.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;} MondayLunchCrew: Continental Skills

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Continental Skills

I've been knitting for a number of years now. My mom taught me how when I was maybe 12 and then I taught myself more than the knit and purl stitches she taught me about 6 years ago. I learned to cast on, bind off and do a number of increases and decreases. I've moved having trouble keeping stitches on the needle to knitting without looking at it (by feel). I've gone from panicking when I've made a mistake to feeling pretty confident that I can just about fix any mistake I've made. Moved from 'un-knitting' rows, to just pulling them apart and know that I can pick it all back up without twisting a stitch or dropping some more. I've made three sweaters and countless accessories. And this past month I feel as if I've made the most progress in my knitting skills. I've always cast on using the long tail method. that's what I've been taught and I have never moved on from there. It works for almost all the time and the only draw back is that if you've estimated the tail length you need, you had to rip it all and start again. Not great. So, this month, I decided to learn the knit cast on. And now, I love it, so much easier to do. Don't know why I wasn't taught this first! And this past week, while working on a simple knit pattern scarf, I decided it was time to teach myself continental knitting. I remember hearing it was faster and also easier on the hands and after two days or so of learning the knit stitch I have to agree, while it's very strange to do, my inexperienced knit was nearly as fast as my regular English method. I'm actually quite impressed! So, I'm looking forward to learning the purl stitch and going from there. I may never completely turn over to knitting continental, but having the option is great for when my hands need a little bit of a break and I think even if it speeds things up a little, it's well worth it. I also thought perhaps that it's easier for left handed folks to learn too. I don't know if it's true. As well, for me, it is a happy reminder that I feel that I am able to teach myself anything craft related. And for my fellow knitters out there, if you haven't learned continental, I'd highly recommend it!

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