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Hi there, welcome to my blog! and thankyou for stopping by. I have designed this blog to share with you knitting patterns that are my favourites and, i'll be trying out some new ones along the way. I also hope to help knitters new and old (i don't mean your age LOL) by sharing information, handy hints and tips, answering quieries and helping solve your knitting problems. Before you go, please help me by making a comment and suggest any knitting project you'd like to see.

Thanks again. Have a nice day!


Dianne

Monday, January 7, 2013

Beginers Knitting Part 1 : Basic Materials


So you've decided you want to learn to knit. What now?
This is the first in a series of posts designed the help new knitters get started.
All you need is a set of needles and inexpensive yarn and a beginner’s guide and pattern.

Needles:

Straight needles, the ones that actually look like two individual “sticks,” and are the tools most of us associate with knitting. Sold in pairs in varying lengths (the most common being 10"/25.5cm and 14"/35.5cm), they sport a point on one end and a knob at the other that keeps stitches from sliding off as you knit.

Circular needles are made up of shorter pointed “sticks” attached to one another by a smooth nylon cord, these can be used to knit both tubular and flat pieces and are ideal for knitting in tight spaces. They’ve also solved the problem of the missing needle; you’ll never lose one in the setee cushions or have it roll away from you.

The third and final variation on knitting needles are the double-pointed style (dpn). These have points on both ends and are used to knit small items in the round, turn sock heels and the like. They’re a bit trickier to use than straights and circulars, so most knitters wait until later when a bit more experienced to use them.

All needles—straight, circular or double pointed—come in a wide range of standardized sizes. They are marked in numeric U.S. sizes (0-50) or millimeters (2.00-25.50) which indicate the diameter of the needle. As a general rule, the lower the number, the thinner the needle. See the needle size conversion chart page for a full listing of sizes.
Yarn:
Now we get to the best part —yarn. Take your pick from natural fibers like wool, alpaca, angora, cashmere, cotton, linen, silk and mohair or sleek synthetics that range from inexpensive acrylic to pricey, glitzy rayon novelties and even new age materials like microfiber and paper. Thick, thin, smooth or textured, you’ll find them in solid colors as well as striped, variegated and multicolored patterns. Though acrylic yarn is often harder than natural fibers, acrylic is less expensive. Use smoother and thicker (at least double knitting or Aran weight) yarn at first so that you can see your stitches. Cotton is also a good material for beginners.  All yarn is grouped into basic categories to help you choose the right type for your project. Organized by weight (thickness of the yarn) they range from super fine all the way to super bulky.

Okay, so now you’re on your way to grasping the basics of yarn and needle size. But how do they work together? With rare exceptions (like some kinds of lace knitting), thinner yarns work best on thinner needles, while thicker yarns require a needle with a little more heft, each yarn weight has a corresponding range of recommended needle sizes. The chart in blog post 'What is yarn weight' will help you familiarize yourself with how it all fits together.

HOLDING YOUR YARN AND NEEDLES TOGETHER

One of the biggest frustrations for a new knitter is finding the most comfortable way of holding the yarn and needles, so if you’re reading this and thinking you’ll never figure it out, don’t despair. With just a little time and patience your hands will fall into a comfortable rhythm.
Perhaps what makes learning to hold the yarn and needles a bit confusing is that no two people do it the same way. The two main styles of knitting are the English and the Continental. Though both create the same end product, most knitters have very specific opinions about which way is superior (their way, of course!). If someone has already taught you how to knit, chances are you have inadvertently chosen one way over the other. If not, or if you’d like to see how the other side knits, here’s the major difference: English knitters hold and “throw” the yarn with their right hand,


 while Continental knitters manipulate the yarn with their left hand.

Once you’ve decided which hand will hold the working yarn, there’s still one more decision to make—how to hold the needles. Some knitters like to grasp their needles over the top, while others would rather hold them like pencils, resting the majority of the needle between the thumb and index finger. There is honestly no right or wrong way to accomplish this, so experiment with the different choices and pretty soon you will have developed your own unique style.
There are various videos on you tube showing you the two methods and Crafty have a beginers class that begins with essential lessons for new knitters: choosing supplies, casting on, knitting, purling and binding off. Learn how to increase, decrease, make a buttonhole, knit lace, block, seam and read patterns. These basic skills put you on your way to create anything you want!
Tomorrow- Beginers Knitting part 2. Cast on and first stitches.


Online Knitting Class

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