If you’re looking to learn how to knit, you’ve come to the right place! This blog will teach you everything you need to know to get started, from the basics of holding your needles to more advanced techniques. By the time you’re finished reading, you’ll be a knitting pro!
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Introduction to knitting
If you’ve never picked up a pair of knitting needles before, the thought of creating something beautiful and useful from yarn may seem daunting. But don’t worry – it’s not as hard as you think, and once you get the hang of it you’ll be hooked! In this article, we’ll introduce you to the basics of knitting so that you can get started on your journey to becoming a master knitter.
The basics of knitting
If you’re a beginner knitter, you might be feeling a little overwhelmed. With all of the different yarns, needles, and stitches, it’s easy to get lost in all of the options. But don’t worry – we’re here to help. In this article, we’ll cover the basics of knitting, from choosing the right materials to creating your first stitch. By the end, you’ll be ready to start your first project.
So grab your favorite skein of yarn and some needles, and let’s get started.
There are two types of knitting needles available on the market today: straight and circular. Straight needles are the most commonly used type of needles and are ideal for beginners. They come in a variety of sizes, from small (suitable for knitting baby clothes) to large (suitable for projects like blankets).
Circular needles are ideal for projects that require a lot of stitches, like afghans or sweaters. They have a long cord connecting the two needle points, which allows you to knit in a continuous circle. You can also use them to knit flat pieces by simply placing the cord behind your work as you knit.
When choosing knitting needles, it is important to select the right size for your project. The size of the needle will affect the gauge of your knitting, so be sure to check your pattern for recommended needle sizes. Needles come in a variety of materials, including wood, plastic, and metal. Different materials can affect your knitting in different ways, so try out a few different types to see what you prefer.
There are different types of yarn that you can use for knitting, and the type of yarn you choose will affect the finished product. The three most common types of yarn are wool, acrylic, and cotton.
Wool is a natural fiber that is warm and insulating, making it a good choice for winter garments. Acrylic is a synthetic fiber that is less expensive than wool and easy to care for. Cotton is a natural fiber that is cool and comfortable to wear, making it a good choice for summer garments.
Casting on is the process of creating the foundation stitches of your project. It may seem daunting at first, but with a little practice, you’ll be able to do it with your eyes closed! There are many different ways to cast on, but we’ll start with the most common method — the long-tail cast on.
This method is ideal for beginners because it’s relatively easy to master and produces a nice, tight edge that won’t unravel easily. You’ll need a regular knitting needle and a second needle of the same size (or a crochet hook) to complete this process.
1. Start by making a slipknot about 18 inches from the end of your yarn. Slip this loop over the end of your knitting needle and tighten it so it’s snug, but not too tight.
2. Make an “X” with your yarn, holding the needle in your right hand and the tail of the yarn in your left. This “X” should have two long tails — one coming from each side of the “X.”
3. Holding both tails in your left hand, use your right hand to bring the needle under both pieces of yarn and then over top of the yarn that’s closest to you (as if you were making a backward “4” shape).
4. Now use your left hand to grab hold of the new loop that’s formed and pull it over top of the needle (towards you) and off the end. You should now have two loops on your needle — one from the slipknot and one from this new stitch.
5. To complete the stitch, tighten up the loop by gently pulling on both ends of yarn until it sits snugly against the needle. You have now successfully cast on one stitch!
The knit stitch
The knit stitch (abbreviated k) is the most basic stitch in all of knitting. To work a knit stitch (sometimes also called a plain stitch), you simply insert your right needle into the front leg of the loop on the left needle from left to right, then wrap your yarn around the right needle as if to make a new loop. Next, draw the yarn through the loop on the left needle to form a new loop on the right needle, and at last, drop the old loop off the left needle. You’ve now completed one knit stitch!
The purl stitch
The purl stitch is one of the most basic stitches in knitting, and once you’ve learned it, you can combine it with the knit stitch to create all kinds of different patterns. Purl stitches are made by holding the yarn in front of your work (if you’re a right-handed knitter, that means holding the yarn in your left hand), and inserting your needle from back to front through the next stitch on your left needle. Then, you wrap the yarn around your needle clockwise and pull it back through the stitch (still keeping the tension on the yarn), and finally slip the old stitch off your left needle. You’ve now made one purl stitch!
Increasing and decreasing
There are two main ways to increase or decrease the number of stitches in your work: you can add or remove stitches, or you can work more or fewer stitches into a given space. How you do this will depend on the effect you want to create and the type of fabric you are working with.
To add stitches, use a method called “casting on”:
1. Make a slipknot and put it on your needle.
2. Hold the needle in your right hand and the yarn in your left. Insert the needle into the slipknot from front to back.
3. Wrap the yarn around the needle from back to front and then pull it through to the back again. You have now made one stitch.
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have the desired number of stitches on your needle.
To remove stitches, use a method called “binding off”:
1. Knit two stitches onto your right-hand needle.
2. Insert your left-hand needle into the first stitch on the right-hand needle and lift it over the second stitch and off of the needle. You have now removed one stitch.
3. Knit one more stitch onto your right-hand needle (you will now have two stitches on your right-hand needle).
4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until you have only one stitch remaining on your right-hand needle, then cut yarn and pull through remaining loop to secure
Binding off is how you finish your knitting project so that your work doesn’t unravel. When you bind off, you create a neat edge that can be sewn or grafted together with another piece of knitting. You can also use binding off to create decorative edging on your knitting.
To bind off, you will need to know how to knit and purl stitches.
Cast on a few stitches (at least 6) onto your needle to practice with.
* knit the first two stitches
* insert the left needle into the front of the second stitch on the right needle
* lift this stitch over the first stitch and off the needle
* now you have one stitch on your right needle
* knit the next stitch on the left needle in the same way
* continue until you have only one stitch left on your right needle
* cut your yarn, leaving a long tail, and pull it through the last stitch to secure it
Finally, you’ll need to weave in the ends and block your finished piece. Blocking is a process of lightly wetting or steaming your knitting to even out the stitches and give your finished piece a professional look. Many knitters skip this step, but it’s definitely worth taking the extra time to do it right.