The main reason that most people never think about learning how to knit is the misconception that it is too hard. Of course, there are advanced patterns and stitches but in the beginning, steps are relatively easy to learn and follow. The key is to start with knitting basics, being dedicated to the process, and spending time practicing. Someone just learning to knit could choose from a huge selection of easy projects and with each one completed, gain more skill to move on to more challenging projects.
Unfortunately, a common mistake made is trying to work on projects beyond ability, which leads to frustration and disappointment. With that, a person simply gives up. Learning to knit is no different from learning anything else, meaning it helps to understand knitting concepts and basic knitting functions. Again, an individual would hone skills with each completed project so that eventually, even the most sophisticated products could be conquered.
Although gaining insight into the full history of knitting is not necessary, having some general knowledge makes it possible to appreciate this craft on an entirely new level. For centuries, knitting was something done out of necessity whereas today, most people knit as a hobby. Of course, with exceptional skills it would be possible to start a business if wanted. In early times, electronic equipment and fancy knitting needles were non-existent so artisans devised various methods using crude tools and supplies.
Because knitted items continued to be of extreme value, this craft was fine-tuned over time. Today, someone interested in knitting can choose from a never-ending selection of yarns, needles, and other required tools/supplies. In fact, the number of available patterns is so vast that many people find the selection process nearly impossible. Most beginners quickly recognize the multitude of possibilities, which actually serve as a great motivator for developing strong knitting skills.
Without proper knowledge of knitting basics, it would be impossible to create a perfect item. Even if an individual invested in the best needles, yarn, and patterns sold, without proper education the project would be a disaster. For someone just learning how to knit, as well as an experienced knitter interested in learning more, it would help to take advantage of available educational tool.
For example, there are a number of well-written books that provide a wealth of information about knitting but also step-by-step diagrams or photographs that would guide an individual through each step. Another popular option is with DVDs. Like books, this type of educational tool would make it possible for someone to follow along while learning basic stitches and methods.
Another option for learning the basics of knitting would be the internet. For this, an individual could use information and instructions found in an e-Book or follow videos posted by seasoned knitters that provide information and instructions. Because there are books, DVDs, e-Books, and online videos for knitters of all skill levels, it is essential to choose what coordinates with current ability.
Appropriate Tools and Supplies
For the person interested in knitting, it would help to purchase quality tools and supplies but without going overboard. After all, it is common for someone to switch to a different type of needles after handling the first set initially purchased. As a beginner, there is no way to really know for certain whether an initial set of needles is going to be what feels and works best long-term. Because of this, we recommend buying needles of decent quality while not spending a fortune.
The same rule applies to other knitting tools and supplies to include yarn. For the more basic patterns, an individual should consider buying yarn in the color wanted but also yarn that has a nice soft texture. Then as skill level increases and patterns worked become more challenging, the opportunity would arise to buy many different types of yarn. In summary, at first a person should spend enough money to end up knitting tools and supplies of moderate quality opposed to buying those considered the best.
As part of learning to knit a person would need to have knowledge of certain methods used. Some of the more important things to learn are listed below:
Casting On – This consists of getting the first row of stitches on the needle prepared. Casting on can be accomplished in several different ways but one of the easiest and most versatile is called “long-tail cast on.”
Purl and Knit Stitches – There are literally hundreds of unique knitting stitches. To avoid confusion and frustration, a beginner would stick to the two most basic to include Purl and Knit. Usually, early knitted items would consist of one row of purl stitches and a second row of knit rows that would be repeated to complete the item. For this reason, these two stitches should be the first a person learns and masters.
Binding Off – Once a project is complete, the last row must be secured to prevent the yarn from unraveling and the person’s hard work done for nothing. The process used to accomplish this is known as “binding off.” Although someone new to this craft would choose a simple but also effective type of binding off, it is important to note that even with this, the method could be somewhat challenging. Rather than feel defeated, an individual should spend time practicing so before long, binding off would become second nature.
Appropriate Patterns – The final piece of information pertaining to knitting basics that we felt important has to do with patterns. Unfortunately, it is common to find a beginner choosing a mid to high level skill pattern well beyond capability. Quickly, the individual realizes the pattern is much too difficult, which leads to a sense of failure before even getting started. Instead, several patterns specifically developed for someone new to the world of knitting should be chosen and projects completed to help build ability in producing more advanced knitted items.