Monday, March 26, 2018
I was working on some Purple Haze yarn yesterday and got about 12 inches I believe. I was doing knit stitches and it was about ten to twelve stitches across. I only had about one fourth of a skein of yarn so I will end up needing to buy another skein. The store supposedly has a 50% off sale this week off one item so I will probably go in and get a skein later. I never realized that so many people take a passing interest in knitting. It seems crocheting is more popular since it has hooks and people sometimes get confused with the two needles but it’s actually not that hard with two tools. I had initially started knitting because I thought it would be a fun thing to do and as a project to learn how to make Christmas gifts because a gift is more personal when you make it versus buy it. I think the cool think is that the scarfs are unique and no two are the same because the yarn is different from scarves, you spend different amount of time on certain scarves and the tension can vary depending on your moods and what you are feeling at the time. Also, each project is done by hand. In a world that’s now almost all automated and dominated by machinery it is nice to go old fashioned and feel what it was like to originally create something with your hands. Although I suspect that most machines can do my task quicker and faster because knitting really is just a series of repeatable patterns that a machine could do perfect, I think it’s a nice activity to do that’s sort of relaxing and Zenlike because you can zone out and think about your day or watch TV or listen to music while doing it. I originally learned the steps from a YouTube video called “How to Knit a Beginner’s Scarf” on SheepandStitch’s video. Her steps were really easy to understand and it was a whole lot easier than books. If you watch someone do the steps it’s way easier. Regardless of whether you’re left-handed or right-handed you can pick up steps easily and adapt. I learned that I prefer bamboo needles because they are warmer when holding them whereas metal needles are cold on picking them up. They give off a slight burn smell if you’re sliding and your work is too tight. And the reason I got off them is because it was a bit more dangerous in that if you poke yourself the metal really hurts whereas I think the wood is a bit more relaxed. Your wood might splinter over time. I actually had knitted one time and made my work too tight using metal needles and hurt myself when binding off so I try now to make my work relaxed.
I like the bulky yarns somewhat and find the ones that fray a lot are not as easy for beginners so if you’re teaching someone it’s good to get a wooden needle, maybe a cap to keep the yarn from slipping off when they aren’t working on the project and also a nice “worsted” yarn?
I have not tried to make hats or socks but have stuck to basic repetitive patterns like all knits or knits and purls or basic knit a certain number of stitches and purl a number of stitches. I’ve also learned how to join string and pick up dropped stitches and do drop stitches on purpose to get a nice straight edge. Some string already has colors that gradually change which can be nice. I like the Lionbrand yarns as they are soft. The Redheart yarns while nice I’ve noticed imperfections in manufacturing in some cases that make it unpleasant in the work. Also make sure you find where to remove the beginning yarn tail as it can be rough later on trying to unwind and untangle a big string mess.
I find stitch markers can help and it is important to pay attention to your stitches because sometimes you can end up with extra stitches somehow especially if your yarn frays easily. Also I like the counters that you can click instead for the turning counters personally cause with the click you can hear it register in your head you reached the end of the row and you just have to be consistent. It helps when you get to the end of a row and you click. But I usually only do the counter on complex projects. I have made roughly about three scarves and one project that turned out sideways somehow. I’ve also made about two or three swatches just to see how my project would turn out. I’ve not done looms although I’ve seen videos and am intrigued. Maybe one day I will do a hat.