European Knitting Try It You Will Like It

bcnorthernerJuly 16, 2005

Has anyone out there ever tryed European knitting?

Thats wear you hold the wool in your left hand instead of the right like in American style knitting.For those of you that have never tryed this it will take some getting use to but the effert is well worth it especially when you are doing stocking stitch (knit front purl back). I can easally purl two rows in the time most will knit one using this method so take the time to learn this one

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I have always knitted in the European (Contintental) style. I only learned to knit the English style a couple of years ago. I have found good uses for both. When I am knitting something with two colors and alternating every other stitch or so, I hold each yarn in a different hand and my knitting just flies. I was so proud of a hat I made recently using these techniques. Certain yarns also feel better using a specific style (for me). Bottom line: it's good to know both.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 1:51AM
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I've tried the European style, but can't get my tension looser. The stitches can hardly slide across the needle! Any suggestions?

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 9:02PM
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I spent a good part of a weekend making myself learn European (continental knitting). It was soooo ackward at first but now I have it down. Our local knitting shop in San Carlos, CA (Creative hands) promotes this type of knitting and even has a class on it. It takes fewer hand movements to make a stitch.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 10:24PM
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Yeah, lynndr, but non-knitters are SO much more impressed to see those knitting needles and your fingers flying when you're doing it the english way! LOL.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 11:52PM
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That's the way I've always knitted.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 3:28AM
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It's how I knit, too. I've been crocheting since I was 10 but wanted to learn to knit this past spring. I tried and tried to keep my yarn in my right hand while learning because all the instruction books told me it would only bring me trouble if I didn't--can't figure that one out. Well I trudged along for about a week when all of a sudden I was picking up speed and realized the yarn was in my left hand!! I'm sure it's because that is the hand I've used to hold my yarn in crocheting for the past 30 years--habit. After reading Donna's post up there about knitting with 2 colors and how much easier it is designating one hand for each, I might have to give the English style another chance.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 11:09AM
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I just about gave up on knitting until my aunt showed me how to knit continental style. Like Kindrat, I'd crocheted for years and the continental manner of holding the yarn in the left hand and the way the right hand uses a needle to pull the yarn through felt natural to my crochet-accustomed hands.

Are there any web sites where we can find out more detailed information about continental knitting techniques? I have heard that there are certain techniques in continental that are slightly different from English.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 5:33PM
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This website has good instructions for lots of knitting techniques:

Here is a link that might be useful: continental

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 7:47PM
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I have alway knit European and would like to teach some children how to knit this way. Does anyone have a link with instructions and good illustrations?

    Bookmark   July 26, 2006 at 9:05AM
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I saw two tv shows on knitting continental style, and I have saved them to reteach myself to knit that way. I have tried it on my own, and just could not get it figured out. I learned to knit English style as a kid, and to crochet as an adult. So someday when I feel in the mood, I am determined to learn continental.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2006 at 4:42PM
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For the longest time I thought I "Knit wrong" then found out I knit continental (European). Whew what a relief that was! People do look at me funny when I knit a quick scarf as I found if I just alternate Continental and American I don't have to knit a row and pearl a row!!! I just knit back and forth!!!


    Bookmark   July 30, 2006 at 1:34PM
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Um, Vickey, you're not doing Continental and American. Both of those techniques still knit in the same direction. What you are doing is actually called backward knitting, and is quite a talent I'm told. I'm intrigued by it, but haven't actually tried it yet.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2006 at 11:55PM
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here's a site that I've used

Here is a link that might be useful: Knitting Help

    Bookmark   July 31, 2006 at 1:25PM
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Darn, and here I thought I'd mastered two kinds of knitting. Going from left to right I knit continental, then going from right to left I throw the yarn, so I thought it was American. HMMM, oh well, it's quick and I make scarves...I can pretty much only knit scarves, but I'm happy with that! (Actually could probably knit more, but am to lazy to try..want to try mittens but last time I tried I think only a lobster could have worn the one).


    Bookmark   August 9, 2006 at 8:07AM
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Well, Vickey, the way you describe your knitting, you ARE doing both continental and american. And in addition, you are backward knitting as well. You are quite talented.

    Bookmark   August 9, 2006 at 12:16PM
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I know only continental, but my cousin, who does both, likes the English style. She says her tension is better. Me, I just knit scarves.

    Bookmark   August 19, 2006 at 10:57PM
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Hi Profsusan,

Thank you for posting the Knitting Help link for how to knit the European way. My neighbor for years has been knitting that way and I haven't been able to ask her to show me how to. It seems like she can whip up anything she wants and quickly using the European method.

I am still trying new patterns and hope to someday knit like she does and teach others how to do either way.

Thanks again,

Cheryl (Foolishknitter)

    Bookmark   November 12, 2006 at 9:47PM
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