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View Full Version : Do we have to be good at everything?


N0obKnitter
05-17-2013, 01:11 PM
I have pondered this often:

Is knitting like school? Do We have to learn things we don't like and be able to do them?

Or: is it purely a hobby and meant to be relaxing/enjoyable? Learn things you want to and not everything? Eg: I so far don't like provisional cast on - due to the short rows. I find short rows very intimidating/stressful. Am I a bad knitter if I never want to learn short rows?

Jan in CA
05-17-2013, 01:49 PM
Of course you don't have to learn something you don't want to. Knitting should be relaxing and enjoyable. By not learning new things it will narrow your choices of some projects, but, if that's okay for you then don't worry about it.

That said...what? You don't use short rows for a provision cast on. :??

butlersabroad
05-17-2013, 01:54 PM
Nope, that would take the enjoyment out of it. I like learning new things and mastering a new technique but it has to be at my own pace. I dread to think how many peeps might give up, or have given up, if they thought they had to be brilliant at something!

N0obKnitter
05-17-2013, 04:34 PM
Of course you don't have to learn something you don't want to. Knitting should be relaxing and enjoyable. By not learning new things it will narrow your choices of some projects, but, if that's okay for you then don't worry about it.

That said...what? You don't use short rows for a provision cast on. :??
The wrap and turns after the cast on...?

N0obKnitter
05-17-2013, 05:06 PM
http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?feature=fvwrel&v=gEEX_L0V_iQ

The short rows after the provisional...that is the part I find...waaaay too complicated. All the picking up and more wraps etc etc.

Makes me wonder if it's ok that I prefer top-down...

Jan in CA
05-17-2013, 05:29 PM
The wrap and turns after the cast on...?

That sounds specific to a pattern. Usually when you do a provisional cast on there are no short rows. BTW...the last short rows I did didn't use wrap and turns. I don't like those either if I can avoid them.

Now I'm not saying you should learn anything you don't want to. This is just an FYI.

I did something like one of these.
http://kaityvr.wordpress.com/2007/05/28/the-easiest-way-to-do-a-short-row-heel/
http://somethingtodowhile.blogspot.com/2009/01/no-wrap-short-rows.html

Jan in CA
05-17-2013, 05:41 PM
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Makes me wonder if it's ok that I prefer top-down...

It's absolutely okay to prefer top down, but...:zombie: That was weird. If that is your introduction to toe up socks no wonder you prefer top down!! That is far from the basic way to do them.

I use a turkish cast on which creates a closed toe right at the beginning. I increase by using KFB on both sides till I have my toe then just knit till you're ready to do the heel. Most toe up patterns use some form of this same method. No provisional cast on or short rows for the toe. How on earth did you find this pattern?

Ingrid
05-17-2013, 05:54 PM
Nobody really HAS to knit anymore. We can clothe ourselves without making anything.

Knitting is for fun and whatever part of the brain it stimulates to make it addictive, and you do what you want to do. Some people love fine lace on tiny needles, some chunky washcloths. Some like complicated, some simple.

The good thing is that there are so many things to make that if you don't want to bother with a particular technique, you don't have to. And once you make a few things, you can adapt patterns to be to your liking.

Jan in CA
05-17-2013, 07:07 PM
Yeah, what Ingrid said! I knit a ridiculous number of hats...I can do them without a pattern if I want to, make them as simple or complicated as I need right then and learn new techniques if I want to. If you really want to learn toe up socks then you look for a pattern that suits your needs. Or knit top down, those work, too. :thumbsup:

GrumpyGramma
05-17-2013, 07:29 PM
Yes! You must learn to do everything knitting. That way you can teach me! :roflhard:

I'd seen that video for socks before and found it off putting, went on and found the Lifestyle socks that are mentioned in the video Jan linked to. Thanks for the video, Jan, I'd seen it or something like it before but didn't quite catch on...that was when I hadn't actually done a sock yet I think. I think Silver's Sock Class pretty much gives you a how-to for socks and you can then do them without a pattern. That's what I love about socks, no pattern required unless you want to do something fancy. Personally I like ribbing around my foot, I think on socks from the store it was called an arch support. I like the way it feels snug, not tight, and helps keep the sock in place and the top doesn't get eaten by my shoe. That's something I wanted to learn, so I did. Learn what you want as you need or the spirit moves you. Sometimes you might end up doing a few things you'd rather not simply because you want to do a particular project. It's kind of like life, sometimes to get what we want we do a few things we'd prefer not to do.

Learning to knit English style was a biggie for me. It still seems awkward, but I can do it. Why bother? So I can do colorwork and carry the second color in my right hand. Was it worth the effort? Yes. Will I turn into an English style knitter? Probably not, but if I injure my left hand I should still be able to do garter stitch, I still can't purl English. I plan to try that odd looking provisional cast on followed by short rows toe, someone on the forum said they like it. I might. I do think you might want to look again at provisional cast ons, they come in handy in various places. Or not. It's up to you.

Frankly I'm amazed at how much knitting you can do with young 'uns. If your comfort zone is to do what you've already learned, stick with it. If it ain't fun, why bother?

ArtLady1981
05-17-2013, 09:03 PM
I only knit what I find enjoyable.

However, I've been forced to learn new techniques along the way. For example, applied/attached i-cord! And I'm so happy I applied myself to it and learned to do it! Now I use it even when it isn't necessarily called for!

I avoid sweater patterns that require a process that I don't like, for example, I avoid top-down construction. And sleeves that are picked up around the armhole, knit (in-the-round) down to the cuff. It's very difficult to block these kinds of sleeves. I prefer blocking flat pieces, then seaming them together.

So to answer your question...no, knitting isn't like school where you have no choice about the curriculum. Knitting is totally optional, and personal to each individual.

Jan in CA
05-18-2013, 01:54 AM
Everyone has different likes and dislikes. I just read Artlady's post.the things she avoids are the things I look for! :teehee:

GG...I do the crochet provisional cast on, but not that one...I find that one more steps than necessary. I use the one that's here in the videos.

salmonmac
05-18-2013, 05:38 AM
There's a difference too between not doing a new technique because you don't like it and not doing it because it's intimidating or stressful. Short rows, provisional cast on, steeking, inside-out knitting all have their uses and are worth trying, at least on some practice swatches. If you don't like doing them or the look of them, there are ways around them or other patterns. That's the beauty of this craft.

GrumpyGramma
05-18-2013, 11:53 AM
Jan, I use the provisional cast on shown here too. The one in the video looks as if it would be too hard, pick up and knit in the bumps? I don't think I have the fine motor control for that. I see something like that and think, I can do that the other way since I already learned how, and wait for the part I'm interested in to get there. Then of course I don't know what a large part of the video really was. That is like when I was in school. :zombie: Most of the time I had no idea what I'd missed.

Jan in CA
05-18-2013, 12:15 PM
GG, It's a sock pattern where you provisionally cast on into the crochet chain right above the toes, then use short roes for the toes, then I assume you put the provisional cast on back on the needles and knit the foot. I'll have to check the rest.

ETA...okay, it's not a whole sock pattern. It's simply a short row, toe. Too fiddly for me even though the toes are nice with no seams.

GrumpyGramma
05-18-2013, 01:41 PM
GG, It's a sock pattern where you provisionally cast on into the crochet chain right above the toes, then use short roes for the toes, then I assume you put the provisional cast on back on the needles and knit the foot. I'll have to check the rest.

ETA...okay, it's not a whole sock pattern. It's simply a short row, toe. Too fiddly for me even though the toes are nice with no seams.

I have some lovely soft On Your Toes bamboo yarn that just isn't cooperating when I do the usual closed cast on and start increasing, it loves to split. I'm hoping that doing it the way in the video might work better. Trial and error. The yarn may be destined for being something besides socks. :shrug: I just don't have the patience to deal with it if I don't figure out an easier/better way to make a toe from it and soon.

N0obKnitter
05-18-2013, 01:49 PM
It's absolutely okay to prefer top down, but...:zombie: That was weird. If that is your introduction to toe up socks no wonder you prefer top down!! That is far from the basic way to do them.

I use a turkish cast on which creates a closed toe right at the beginning. I increase by using KFB on both sides till I have my toe then just knit till you're ready to do the heel. Most toe up patterns use some form of this same method. No provisional cast on or short rows for the toe. How on earth did you find this pattern?

Ninja skills. Lol.

This might seem stupid but, I can do Turkish easily on dpn instead of magic loop?

GrumpyGramma
05-18-2013, 01:49 PM
There's a difference too between not doing a new technique because you don't like it and not doing it because it's intimidating or stressful. Short rows, provisional cast on, steeking, inside-out knitting all have their uses and are worth trying, at least on some practice swatches. If you don't like doing them or the look of them, there are ways around them or other patterns. That's the beauty of this craft.


Steek. cuttingSTitchesEEK! I've not done this but will try it. I have something I will make up one day and it requires steeking. Intimidating? Definitely. Will I try it? Yes. Will I succeed? I expect so. Will I ever do it again? Time will tell. Fortunately I have many teachers, here and all across the 'net.

Many things aren't worth bothering about until I understand why bother about them. Provisional cast on was like that, now I find many uses for it. Short rows were intimidating and frightening, then frustrating beyond belief. They were too too too ugly to use, another method had to be found, someone here suggested German short rows and that's worked for me so far and now I look at other methods and have to decide which one to try next. I'm stalling. I should be swatching and then cleaning my kitchen.

Lighting57
05-18-2013, 02:06 PM
no, knitting isn't like school where you have no choice about the curriculum.

We can think of it more like vocational school where you choose what courses you wish to take.

Jan in CA
05-18-2013, 08:42 PM
Ninja skills. Lol.

This might seem stupid but, I can do Turkish easily on dpn instead of magic loop?

Yes, you can. I haven't done it that way because I prefer ML, but I found a few videos. I think this one from Cat Bordhi is the best one and is how I do it. She's using big needles and yarn to show you how to do it, but it looks better in lighter yarn.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Px2dxWHZ8U

She shows increases for her pattern, but how you do them will depend on your pattern. I only did one on each end of each needle (4 increases total) like this ---
Round 1 - KFB, knit until 2 stitches remain on needle KFB, k1. Repeat on other needle.
Round 2 - Knit all stitches on both needles

Repeat both rows till you have your ultimate stitch count.

You do them the KFB like the above so it will match on each side. If you're using DPN instead of ML just keep track of where your increases are since you're using m ore than just the two needles.

GrumpyGramma
05-19-2013, 12:03 PM
Yes, you can. I haven't done it that way because I prefer ML, but I found a few videos. I think this one from Cat Bordhi is the best one and is how I do it. She's using big needles and yarn to show you how to do it, but it looks better in lighter yarn.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Px2dxWHZ8U

She shows increases for her pattern, but how you do them will depend on your pattern. I only did one on each end of each needle (4 increases total) like this ---
Round 1 - KFB, knit until 2 stitches remain on needle KFB, k1. Repeat on other needle.
Round 2 - Knit all stitches on both needles

Repeat both rows till you have your ultimate stitch count.

You do them the KFB like the above so it will match on each side. If you're using DPN instead of ML just keep track of where your increases are since you're using m ore than just the two needles.


Jan, I think she said in at least one rendition of this method, that 3 is the magic number for casting on. Did I get that right? Does it apply only to the particular pattern she refers to? How many did you use? Questions, questions, questions. :) This Turkish cast on seems different somehow from ones I've looked at before. Must try it this way. Thanks!

Jan in CA
05-19-2013, 12:45 PM
Jan, I think she said in at least one rendition of this method, that 3 is the magic number for casting on. Did I get that right? Does it apply only to the particular pattern she refers to? How many did you use? Questions, questions, questions. :) This Turkish cast on seems different somehow from ones I've looked at before. Must try it this way. Thanks!

3? I think that must be pattern specific. I cast on 16 with fingering weight and size 0 needles. I find the Turkish cast on easier than Judy's Magic Cast on. Here's a pic. You can see using the simple KFB looks fine

GrumpyGramma
05-19-2013, 02:30 PM
Yup, that's a lovely sock toe - as if you'd do anything else. :noway: I don't know what's different but there is something different about the way she shows the T. cast on. I'm really not interested in tracking down others to compare, however. If it's good enough for you, it's good enough. I will give it a go. Thanks so much!

Jan in CA
05-19-2013, 04:41 PM
If it's good enough for you, it's good enough. I will give it a go. Thanks so much!

You're welcome. I took a sock knitting class in October (Called Socktober..:lol:) and the majority of us did this toe. :thumbsup:

mathwizard
05-21-2013, 09:20 PM
Nah, I love to knit and crochet and many other crafts but I hate filet crochet. I had to do it for the Masters program for the crochet guild ( they have a new one now) and hated it because one mistake and ripping out so much ,lol. I enjoy being a perfectionist when knitting but haven't found something I don't like about it yet. There is still lots to try and learn.:cheering:

Jeremy
05-22-2013, 05:12 PM
I love what the Yarn Harlot said about Cat Bordhi-She sits around and thinks "There has to be a harder way to do this". Anyhow, I think The Knitting Guild of America does have this mind set. That you do have to do be able to do certain things and do them well whether they're your kind of stuff or not. I've been a member for a while but never really drank the Koolaid on this issue.

GrumpyGramma
05-22-2013, 11:16 PM
Jeremy, thanks for the comment about finding a harder way to do things. I've thought some individuals seem to think that more complicated and more difficult is by necessity better. I disagree. I prefer, :muah: keep it simple, sweetie. I hadn't come across the Yarn Harlot's comment.
:thumbsup:

N0obKnitter
05-23-2013, 09:40 AM
I agree about Bordhi - sweet tomato heel etc. I've viewed many of her videos and thought "too complicated/fiddly etc
For me!"

I do not think I'm a "process" knitter.

Antares
05-23-2013, 11:34 AM
I have pondered this often:

Is knitting like school? Do We have to learn things we don't like and be able to do them?

Or: is it purely a hobby and meant to be relaxing/enjoyable? Learn things you want to and not everything? Eg: I so far don't like provisional cast on - due to the short rows. I find short rows very intimidating/stressful. Am I a bad knitter if I never want to learn short rows?

GOOD GRIEF! What kind of Knitting Nazis are you hanging with, Girl? Whoever they are, you should lose 'em (FAST!) and get some better friends. And if it's your own little self that's thinkin' this, you should definitely change your thinking!

This is as bad as a friend who stresses out over meeting up with me. Why take something FUN and make it pure-dee hell? (Unless, of course, your sadistic; then have at it . . . but count me out!)

N0obKnitter
05-24-2013, 12:23 PM
I used to go to knitting guild meetings - while I did learn some new things, I felt a bit like I was in College again, in a class with required learning etc. I mean, we were encouraged to practice certain things and show our work etc. We had "homework"! It was awesome but...I had conflicting feelings. Is my knitting purely a hobby, for stress relief or...is it also a skill and I need to try to learn everything, even if I don't enjoy it, or think it too fiddly etc?

Different than me learning stuff I actually want to, like two at a time socks or top down raglan pullovers etc. THOSE things I'm self-taught via books and the internet.

Yes, I think entirely TOO much.

Rorshach
05-29-2013, 12:47 PM
When it comes to anything, knitting in this case, I tend to learn about one technique or pattern, then explore those to see what I can do. It's not necessary to know how to do everything, even though it would be nice.

Jan in CA
05-29-2013, 12:52 PM
I used to go to knitting guild meetings - while I did learn some new things, I felt a bit like I was in College again, in a class with required learning etc. I mean, we were encouraged to practice certain things and show our work etc. We had "homework"! It was awesome but...I had conflicting feelings. Is my knitting purely a hobby, for stress relief or...is it also a skill and I need to try to learn everything, even if I don't enjoy it, or think it too fiddly etc?

Different than me learning stuff I actually want to, like two at a time socks or top down raglan pullovers etc. THOSE things I'm self-taught via books and the internet.

Yes, I think entirely TOO much.

Read back through the thread and you'll see we said no. Learn what you want at your own pace. There are no knitting police. If they hire some at Guild meetings and it bothers you then don't go.