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Knitting

XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
edited February 2011 in Help / Advice Forum
I know we have at least one knitter on here as I've seen the knitted pieces in a lot of pictures (they all look great by the way)!

I'm looking for help and using google-fu, I have determined that there are about a million websites that all help a little.

Can anyone recommend me a good site for beginners?

example: looking at the about.com site on knitting I can find a glossary of general terms. However, each term is a link to a different site with a different layout etc. etc. As someone painfully new to this, it's more confusing than helpful.

I guess I'm looking for an all around easy to navigate site that can teach me from basic to advanced.

any/all help would be appreciated!

Xaquin on
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    tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I am a knitter and instructor... i am posting from my phone so can't cross-reference my links but I am pretty sure knittinghelp.com has videos and everything. Probably about half my knitting friends got started with the Stitch'n'Bitch books, start with the first one if you go that route. feel free to hit me up via pm or email with questions, there's a lot of info out there though. :D

    tapeslinger on
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    ArtereisArtereis Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    My wife knits. She exists on www.ravelry.com as a resource.

    Artereis on
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    tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    haha! I was just running back here to add ravelry.com to my post and artereis has it covered! ravelry is a great site with forums, links to patterns, a pretty comprehensive library for your personal 'stash' of yarn, books, etc.

    tapeslinger on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    awesome!

    I made an account on Ravelry, but it seemed a bit over my head hehe

    I'll try the videos on knittinghelp =)

    Thanks!

    edit:

    The Glossary on Knitting help was exactly what I was looking for! I have no clue how I missed it. I think half my problem is I'm looking at tutorials and patterns and things and have no clue what the terms mean. Now I think I can get a handle on it!

    Xaquin on
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    EtheaEthea Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Artereis wrote: »
    My wife knits. She exists on www.ravelry.com as a resource.

    My GF lives on ravelry I swear.

    Ethea on
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    Kate of LokysKate of Lokys Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I actually just took up this hobby myself, and I'm quite enjoying it - I've just about reached the point where I can sit and knit while watching TV without needing to devote all of my attention to staring at my hands.

    Personally, I found the various websites I stumbled across to be minimally helpful at getting started. The pictures tended to be some combination of blurry and tiny, the videos were so low-quality I couldn't see what was going on, and text descriptions tended to assume that whoever was reading them already knew all the basics.

    The most useful thing for me was getting a couple of actual books. The $10 "learn to knit" starter kit I picked up at Wal-Mart came with two pairs of knitting needles, a couple of yarn needles, a gauge, a few other odds and ends, and a decent little instruction book that demonstrated stuff like casting on, knit stitch versus purl stitch, etc. It had a dozen patterns ranging from a basic scarf to some hideous hippie shawl-thing, and it explained how to interpret and read the whole "CO 37[41, 45, 49, 53, 57, 61] sts P5, [p2tog, p6(7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12)] four times" language. I also took out a book from the local library, some silly "no really, it's cool for men to knit too" thing called Knitting with Balls, which was pretty similar, but had a somewhat higher production value.

    Having books in general is good because the pictures are big and clear and it's easy to see exactly what's going on; having more than one book is great because when I *do* get a bit confused about what I'm supposed to be doing, I can turn to the other set of instructions for slightly different wording or a better camera angle of the stitch.

    Kate of Lokys on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    hmmmm

    I'll have to give the local library a once over =)

    Xaquin on
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    CowSharkCowShark Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I second www.knittinghelp.com, since they've got some good videos for learning to cast on, and make basic stitches and shit.

    Actually seeing someone's hands doing the stuff is _infinitely_ more helpful than series of pictures, for me.

    CowShark on
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    mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    its been a while since i last opened it but i got this book and thought it was well done and had a good instructional bits

    http://www.amazon.com/Knitting-Balls-Hands-Guide-Modern/dp/0756622891

    plus some good patterns to try

    mts on
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    Mom2KatMom2Kat Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I have recently decided to pick up knitting again as all my friends is pregnant. I learned to knit stich and purl when I was about 10 and still have the darn scarf thing I started on. It has come with me on every move! I went through the pattern books at our Wal-Mart and the one I got had some easy blanket patterns and how to cast on and cast off. I am just halfway through an easy blanket that is just 6x6 squares done in straight knit stich. I am looking forward to moving on to one of the harder patterns.

    I also love the aforementioned sites. Also the Bernat site has some neat patterns.

    Mom2Kat on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Cool, thanks all

    I watched the video on casting on and will attempt today

    Xaquin on
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    CreidhesCreidhes Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I also LIVE on Ravelry. I recommend the youtube videos by the "StitchWitch". I use her all the time for learning new stuff. :)

    Creidhes on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    So, uh

    I'm lame and started a blog about this if anyone is interested.

    I'm enjoying the knitting so far but am already hitting some snags (haha)

    http://thesupermanlyartofknittingasweater.blogspot.com/

    Xaquin on
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    UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Ravely and I are like this

    fingerscrossed.jpg

    Also I basically taught myself to knit from the videos on Knitting Help, though right now the only cast on I can do with any sort of reliability is the long-tail. Right now I'm teaching myself to knit socks and lace, having finished learning cables.

    What sort of snags are you encountering?

    Usagi on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I do the long tail cast on too

    The problem I'm having is the second row of knit. When I transfer the needle with the yarn on it from my right hand to the left hand the thread is at the back of the needle, so when I cross the yarn over and push it off, it just kind of unravels.

    I know I'm doing something wrong (probably something easy) I just don't know what. Most all videos are only of the first row, so I don't know where to go from there

    Xaquin on
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    UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Ah ok, try watching the video for the small project demo on this page, as she does more than one row

    Also, are you continental or english-style knitting?

    Also also, I'm here at Ravelry, though I haven't updated projects in a while

    Usagi on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    English

    Since my ultimate goal (a million years from now lol) is a traditional Aran Sweater, I figured I'd go with English since it would be more traditional

    (this made sense to me at the time I swear)

    Thanks for the video =)

    Xaquin on
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    UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Hey no problem!

    If you don't mind some butting in, you're probably going to want to build up to the sweater - try some scarves, some hats, basically a bunch of different projects that will teach you the little things so when you get to the sweater your confidence and skill level are where they need to be

    e: And I will say, if you're more comfortable knitting continental just go for it. After crocheting for ages, english style seemed so unnatural to me that I fail at it completely, but I'm relatively quick at continental now. Lots of practice!

    Usagi on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    You're not butting in at all =)

    I was kind of figuring going pot holder - scarf - socks - sweater or something (with a lot of practice swatches in between). I'm going to try for the sweater by Christmas!

    Xaquin on
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    UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Awesome! I guess I meant to say that I found doing actual projects way the hell more useful than just knitting endless squares hoping to catch on, and Ravelry is a great place for that with all of the free patterns and reviews/knitting tips

    Usagi on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    thanks!

    Xaquin on
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    tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I definitely agree that projects are the way to go. (I have uhm... kind of a lot of hats, mostly from testing patterns and stitches.)

    and yeah, between Knitty and Ravelry there are metric tons of project possibilities out there! I forgot to link my Ravelry earlier but mine is here. :D

    I will say that my knitting style is a cross of English and Continental; the advantage with continental is speed and ease, but the English method is a little more methodical and I think it lets you control how tightly you're pulling the yarn. I definitely recommend knitting as loosely as you can until you have a good idea of how tense to hold the yarn. (It will eventually come completely naturally to you!)

    tapeslinger on
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    mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    eh honestly i feel like you should hold the yarn however you feel comfortable. i use a weird style that works for me, but is nowhere near to what is traditional.

    mts on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I definitely agree that projects are the way to go. (I have uhm... kind of a lot of hats, mostly from testing patterns and stitches.)

    and yeah, between Knitty and Ravelry there are metric tons of project possibilities out there! I forgot to link my Ravelry earlier but mine is here. :D

    I will say that my knitting style is a cross of English and Continental; the advantage with continental is speed and ease, but the English method is a little more methodical and I think it lets you control how tightly you're pulling the yarn. I definitely recommend knitting as loosely as you can until you have a good idea of how tense to hold the yarn. (It will eventually come completely naturally to you!)

    yeah, the first time I did a full row of casting on (I think I said that right) I could barely move the loops towards the pointy end of the needle they were on there so tight.

    Xaquin on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Just for the record, between the above link and this picture guide, I FINALLY figured out what I was doing wrong. Which was simply transferring the cast ons from one needle to the other.

    http://www.thebestknittersguide.com/2010/05/knit-stitch.html

    Xaquin on
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    tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    mts wrote: »
    eh honestly i feel like you should hold the yarn however you feel comfortable. i use a weird style that works for me, but is nowhere near to what is traditional.

    Most people do exactly this-- you tend to do whatever is most comfortable once your hands are programmed. I hold my yarn in a weird way but it works for me. No two knitters knit alike! Styles of knitting are more about where you hold the yarn and where the needles go to pick up live stitches, and as long as you're getting knits, purls, et al, then you are doing it right.

    tapeslinger on
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    mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    mts wrote: »
    eh honestly i feel like you should hold the yarn however you feel comfortable. i use a weird style that works for me, but is nowhere near to what is traditional.

    Most people do exactly this-- you tend to do whatever is most comfortable once your hands are programmed. I hold my yarn in a weird way but it works for me. No two knitters knit alike! Styles of knitting are more about where you hold the yarn and where the needles go to pick up live stitches, and as long as you're getting knits, purls, et al, then you are doing it right.

    hi 5

    mts on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    wow, 9" Bamboo needles are about 1 Billion times easier to manage than 14" Aluminum needles

    I finally FINALLY figured out what I was doing wrong

    I wasn't pulling the little loop through the stitch, I was just moving the stitch from one needle to the other.

    Xaquin on
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    CowSharkCowShark Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Wood is less slippery, which I'm a fan of.

    CowShark on
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    UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Yes yes yes bamboo or wood needles all the way

    I'm also a huge fan on knitting on circulars all the time as it's much harder to either drop stitches accidentally or woops lost my other straight needle

    Usagi on
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    CreidhesCreidhes Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Usagi wrote: »
    Yes yes yes bamboo or wood needles all the way

    I'm also a huge fan on knitting on circulars all the time as it's much harder to either drop stitches accidentally or woops lost my other straight needle

    I am a big fan of using circular needles as well (even for non-circular projects). I've lost many straight needles and dpn's to the couch monster.

    I find that the metal knitting needles are easier for me though as they easily slide together. Less friction to work against.

    Creidhes on
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    tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    I love love LOVE my Addi Turbos and I wouldn't give them up for anything in the world, but I would have found them superfrustrating when I was first starting. They're slick plated metal needles that are my day to day workhorses.

    I usually start someone I'm teaching with bamboo simply because they are less expensive than wood but offer most of the benefits. Clover are the ones I usually use, though I just recently got a set of bamboo DPNs from Crystal Palace that I really like!

    I am a DPN convert; for stuff like toys and fingerless gloves, you get a better seam. Plus, if you knit in public with them people tend to keep their distance. They're great for getting a seat on the subway to yourself :D



    Sounds like you're starting to get it, and hopefully getting the hang of the pulling-the-loop-through-part -- and I love that you are this enthused about it.

    tapeslinger on
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    mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    yea i started with wood/bamboo but much prefer metal. though the ones I like are not the shiny aluminum kind, they are a matte grey. work great and not as slippy and the anodized ones. the bamboo just has too much friction for my tastes especially on a big project

    and i can't stand circular needles. DPN for life

    mts on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    So, I finally got a solid half hour to knit

    I think I finished 5 rows of 30 stitches

    In the end, it looks both better and worse than I expected. Better because it actually looks like yarn was knitted. Worse because it looks like yarn that was knitted poorly hehe

    6rows.jpg

    any advice on making it more uniform?

    Xaquin on
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    mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    well a lot of the charm of hand knitter stuff is that it is not perfect.

    honestly it doesn't look too bad. your tension is probably off between stiches and rows, but a lot of that gets sorted out when you get it off the needle and stretch it a bit

    mts on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    mts wrote: »
    a lot of that gets sorted out when you get it off the needle and stretch it a bit

    hah!

    I've been so concerned with keeping this on the needles I never even considered what happens when you take it off

    Xaquin on
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    UsagiUsagi Nah Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Yep, once you finish it and either stretch it dry or wash it and stretch/shape it wet (called blocking) it'll be a totally different animal

    And the more practice you get the more uniform your stitches will be

    Usagi on
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    XaquinXaquin Right behind you!Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    one more quick question

    the leftover thread from the cast on. Can I just cut it off or something?

    Does it go somewhere?

    I trimmed it a bit cause it kept getting in my way, but I don't want to cut it all off if it will cause my project to unravel from the other end

    Xaquin on
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    tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited February 2011
    that looks fine to me. blocking cures a wealth of sins. keep up the great work!

    tapeslinger on
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    mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited February 2011
    Xaquin wrote: »
    one more quick question

    the leftover thread from the cast on. Can I just cut it off or something?

    Does it go somewhere?

    I trimmed it a bit cause it kept getting in my way, but I don't want to cut it all off if it will cause my project to unravel from the other end
    depends how long it is. if i really care i tuck it in to the second row to hide it. if not just tie a close not and cut it

    mts on
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