Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Experiments in Knitting

Something very odd happened recently--I was seized with the urge to knit.  I figured it would happen at some point.  I have mentioned before, "I'd like to learn to knit, too, more than a basic rectangle, but I don't see that happening any time soon."

The "basic rectangle" that I learned to knit before was back when I was 12 or so--I think it was for Young Women's at church, or possibly younger than that.  I remember making a cover for a wooden hanger.  It wasn't particularly exciting.  By that point I was already crocheting doll clothes, so I couldn't really see any point in knitting rectangles. I do remember fiddling around with it again at various times, for one thing or another, but it was all a very long time ago!

I'm not sure where this desire to pick up the needles came from.  Perhaps it was the appeal of focusing on something else for a while, without any expectations of how it was going to turn out.  Just playing.  Trying something new.  (Or perhaps it was just an avoidance technique--like my roommate at BYU who used to go on cleaning binges when she had a lot of homework.)

So I got online and found some videos--long tail cast on (which I love), basic knit and purl stitches, and more... how to yarn over and knit two together, how to do a slip-slip-knit, and even cables.  I don't have a cable needle so I just used one of my crochet hooks, slipping the stitches onto one end and off the other.  (Not ideal, but it worked.)  And everything turned out great!  (Except that bit in the middle where I was trying out the yarn overs and decreases in no particular pattern--that looks a little weird.)

There are two styles of knitting--English, or "throwing," holding the yarn in the right hand; and Continental, or "picking," holding the yarn in the left hand.  I'm definitely a picker.  In fact I've found that I hold the yarn exactly the same way that I do when I'm crocheting.

After practicing the yarn overs and decreases, I found a few basic lace patterns and had a go at those.  Nice!  At this point I find it takes a lot more concentration than following a crochet pattern, but that will come with practice.  I suppose the next step will be to try stranded colorwork. That should be exciting.

This is some Red Heart yarn left over from Kate's octopus.  Not my ideal choice to work with.  I'll have to try with something nicer, and maybe some different needles.

At this point I don't have any particular thing that I'm planning to knit.  (I already have another crochet sweater that I've started.) I'll probably just keep learning and practicing a little at a time, and maybe some day I'll knit Andy a sweater or something.


Helen in Australia said...

I just love the way your practice muck-around pieces look totally awesome. You're a legend. :-)

Jake and Jenny said...

Sweet! You always amaze me with your talents!

Anonymous said...

a pesar de no entender muy bien el ingles me ha ENCANTADO tu blog! y la facilidad para tejer, has hecho muestras increibles! te felicito!
muchos saludos y exitos!
Patricia, desde Lima Perú

Anonymous said...