In this first post for Knitting and Crochet Blog Week, we look at starting out.
My mother taught me to sew and although she also knitted (Continental-style), crocheted and embroidered, it was my sister that first taught me to knit (English-style). I wasn’t very young, but definitely a pre-teen – a very long time ago anyhow. I remember it perfectly, (surprising since I sometimes have difficulty remembering the start of a sentence), a ball of royal blue DK wool, a pair of coloured metal needles and the intention of a 2×2 ribbed scarf. (No, starting simple has never been my idiom).
I thought I was doing reasonably well for a beginner, but couldn’t work out why I kept gaining stitches and would just knit two together if the 2×2 rib suddenly became 2×3 or 3×3. My tension was all over the place too, so it was a fairly wonky piece. My learning style is usually ‘point me in the right direction and let me get on with it, even if I get a bit lost en route I’ll get there in the end’ but eventually questions about how I was getting on were asked, so I had to ‘fess up that I couldn’t work out what was going on with the extra stitches. It transpired that I had a tendency to wrap the yarn over the needle and effectively do a YO when purling, a mistake that became a skill and one I have made excellent use of in lace knitting since. So inadvertently, I discovered a number of techniques beyond basic knit and purl.
I’ve since gone on to try rather more adventurous pieces. Of course, they are mostly just a matter of the same basic stitches and the ability to count, but the results look impressive 😉
As to the original scarf, I don’t recall ever finishing it (along with many other projects that fell by the wayside). It was frogged a few times in the pursuit of some kind of consistency, perfection being unattainable at that stage, or possibly I just got bored of the repetetive nature of ribbing. On reflection, it is rather a shame that I didn’t just press on to the end, warts and all. It would probably have made a nice “art” piece on Etsy (or Regretsy).