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View Full Version : Venting about knitting - I'm a bit depressed at the moment


Darcy
07-12-2006, 06:06 PM
Hello Everyone,

The worst thing about learning to knit is all the knitting and not being able
to make anything that isn't totally ebarrassing.

My knitting is very uneven.

Anyway, I bought the following knit kit because it looked like I would like
the pattern and it was on sale so I figured it was a deal. It is for
intermediate knitters which I know I'm not, but I figured it would still be
good practice.
http://www.target.com/gp/detail.html/602-4878259-9614221?_encoding=UTF8&frombrowse=1&asin=B0002KQ7YQ

First, the knitting needles are 11.5" long but when I cast on the 104 stitches
they are not long enough. I have 1 set of the needles that are connected,
I don't know what they are called. They are wood and are very hard
to use, they do not slip into the stitches easily and I'm just fed up.

The above kit came with what I think is called sport weight yarn. No
room for mistakes.

You should see the 3rd row I knitted for my swatch. There are loose
loops everywhere. Where did those darn stitches come from?! Did
a troll come in a knit that row while I took a rest room break?

I'm off to knit on the knifty knitter just so that I have something to show
for my effort.

:frog:
Darcy

Sara
07-12-2006, 06:18 PM
Well, you did get a good deal. The price was good. Cotton yarn doesn't have much give, though, so it might be harder than you want just starting out.

I would suggest that you go to a discount or craft store (like Michael's or Joann's) and purchase a worsted weight acrylic (or wool if you don't like the feel of acrylic). Don't buy any fun fur or hairy yarn, just plain yarn. Get a light color, it's hard to see the stitches when you're just starting.

Then cast on some stitches. Rip it off, cast on again. Try knitting some rows and then try purling. Just play with it so that you get the feel of what you are supposed to do. If your knitting is too tight, hold two needles together while you cast on and slip one out when your stitches are on. It will keep your cast on from being too tight.

Knitting takes practice, but it's very rewarding. Good luck! :thumbsup:

ladyindica2000
07-12-2006, 06:19 PM
Aw, big hugs. Dont give up just yet though. You will get the hang of it, I promise! When I first started, there were extra stitches everywhere and I dropped stitches left, right and centre.

Do you have a local yarn store close by? Maybe you could drop in there and ask them to have a look at your technique to see if they can offer some pointers. Or, better yet, maybe you can take a class if they offer one. That's how I started and the teaching helped immensly. I still take classes.

Stick with it and I promise in a few months, you will be knitting up a storm!

T

brendajos
07-12-2006, 06:49 PM
i agree with what has been suggested so far....i would also say that after you are use to casting on don't rip out anymore. even if it doesn't look right...just keep on knitting. you WILL see improvement and it is very cool to see the difference in your stitches from the beginning until the end! :thumbsup:

janelanespaintbrush
07-12-2006, 08:15 PM
Ditto about cotton. Wool is much, much, much easier to knit because it is springy, and thus a lot more forgiving.

I had a hard time when I started too. The first thing I tried to knit was a garter stitch scarf in worsted weight yarn. My stitches were really uneven and it was taking so long that I started to think that knitting just wasn't for me. Finally, I gave up on the scarf I decided to try a smaller project -- a hat. I doubled the yarn so it would knit faster. Well, lo and behold, it was finished in no time, my stitches looked better (fatter yarn helps there -- doubling it achieved that), and I got lots of positive reinforcement as I saw my knitting actually develop into something other than a rectangle. I think I made three hats that week.

So, if I may offer my humble advice, I would recommend putting the poncho aside for a while, choosing a smaller project, and getting a light-colored bulky wool yarn and some big needles. You'll be able to see and control your stitches better, and most importantly, you'll get faster results, which will help get you excited and keep you knitting.

Another thing about uneven stitches... keep in mind that you can go always back and even out your stitches later. Just take the tip of a knitting or tapestry needle and wherever there is a loose stitch, you can tighten it up by pulling a little of the loose yarn into the stitches beside it. (I'm not sure I explained that very well, but hopefully you know what I mean.)

Good luck! :cheering:

dustinac
07-12-2006, 08:21 PM
When I first started my LYS told me size 8 bamboo and wool yarn to start with... but I kept frogging every thing cause I wanted it to look ok.. finally someone *ahemm brendajosos** why don't you stop taking it out and just continue so you will have a scarf or something? so I did lol my first project was the never ending afghan for my daughter and a dishcloth.. hang in there and it will come... I know its easier said than done.. when I first started I was about to pitch the needles/yarn out the door.. just keep at it and don't rip it out just keep going.. soon you will see a difference in the beginning of your project to the end.. later on down the road you can pull that first project out and stare in amazement at how far you have come...

belive me my daughter's afghan is not a square like its suppose to be lol and has alot of yarn overs... and my dishrag well one corner goes way way way up... :rofling:

Darcy
07-12-2006, 08:24 PM
Ditto about cotton. Wool is much, much, much easier to knit because it is springy, and thus a lot more forgiving.

Yes, I knew that too but since the yarn came with the kit I didn't think
about what I was doing.

I have several projects on needles. I think I may attack the poncho
again but with wool yarn.

How does one make hats? Doesn't one need to know the 3 needle
knitting technique? Knitting in the round I think it's called?

Currently, I am making a knifty knitter cowl (maybe knifty knitter
doesn't count LOL)

A teddy bear on 'real' needles and a rabit on real needles.

When I get stressed about my knitting or just a bit bored I switch to
the knifty knitter and then when I get bored with that, I switch back.

I found an awsome knifty knitter house socks pattern but it is very
time consuming because of the stitches - kind of hard to explain unless
you are familiar with the KK. I would love to make these same kind
of foot warmers with regular needles, I know they would be faster and
easier this way. Just about the only thing that would be on real needles.

Just rambling my thoughts as usual.
Thanks for listening.
Darcy

mks22300
07-12-2006, 09:18 PM
How does one make hats? Doesn't one need to know the 3 needle
knitting technique? Knitting in the round I think it's called?
Darcy

Well, to make hats you don't need dpn's, you can use circular needles. Circs might be eaiser to start out with than dpns, but I guess that depends on the knitter. Actually, I had never used dpns until my wonderful yarn swap pal got me some so I could learn to make socks and they aren't as intimidating as I thought! So, I guess just try both methods and see which one you like the best! Was that any help or did I just confuse you more? :rofling:

brendajos
07-12-2006, 09:21 PM
there are also many patterns for hats that are knit flat. just look at the instructions and see if it tells you to "join without twisting" and if the instructions are in "rounds" or "rows."

if they are listed as rows then it is most often going to be knit flat. I have never done one flat because i LOVE knitting in the round (i almost always use circs though DPNs aren't that bad) but they can be done flat and then just seamed up.

janelanespaintbrush
07-12-2006, 09:58 PM
I used 16" circular needles for my first hats. They are really easy to use. You just go around and around instead of turning from front to back. Most bottom-up hat patterns call for decreasing at the top, but I've seen a few patterns where you just sort of gather it up so you don't have to worry about learning small diameter knitting right away (that requires DPNs, magic loop, or two circulars). You don't have to make a hat necessarily, but I bet that if you could successfully complete one small project it would be a real confidence booster and bring you out of your rut. Before you know it, you'll be addicted.

Jan in CA
07-12-2006, 10:49 PM
Even acrylic is easier when you are learning. Something with some give to it. And keep practicing. None of us had even knitting after 3 or 4 rows. Maybe after an entire scarf though. :thumbsup:

kschmitz
07-13-2006, 10:39 AM
Bags are another nice, reasonably-sized project to do. Like hats, they can be knit either in the round or flat, and it's a good way to learn finishing techniques. And unlike hats, you don't have to deal with the DPN issue. Also, there are tons of great bag patterns using wool that are felted, which hides uneven stitches, etc. Keep at it, and keep in mind that we're here to help! :D

janelanespaintbrush
07-13-2006, 10:50 AM
Bags are another nice, reasonably-sized project to do. Like hats, they can be knit either in the round or flat, and it's a good way to learn finishing techniques. And unlike hats, you don't have to deal with the DPN issue. Also, there are tons of great bag patterns using wool that are felted, which hides uneven stitches, etc. Keep at it, and keep in mind that we're here to help! :D

Good points, especially about the felting. I think a bag would be a great idea. (I might have to make one now too! ;) You're very convincing!)

jodstr2
07-13-2006, 11:17 AM
aw :heart: hang in there Darcy - like others have said before me if you continue instead if ripping out, you will see your stitches and tension become more even.

I bought size 8 metal needles and someone gave me a practice skein of Red Heart acrylic to learn on.

Darcy
07-13-2006, 12:03 PM
Ok, what does DPN stand for? and the needles I have that are attatched, what are those called? Do I use those for knitting in the round or for
larger pieces of fabric like I originally thought?

:??
Darcy

brendajos
07-13-2006, 12:12 PM
DPN = Double Pointed Needles ...they come in packs of four or ideally five.

The others are circular needles and can be used for knitting flat OR for knitting in the round. if you are going to knit a hat in the round you wouldn't want more than 16 inches from point to point (that is the measurement on the package...point to point)

longer needles have all sorts of great uses as well as knitting in the round.

most patterns done in the round will tell you how long the needle should be. you can usually get by with a shorter needle than recommended but not longer!

brendajos
07-13-2006, 12:15 PM
oh just so you know...I have never used straight needles for anything. well except maybe as swords when my brother and I would play at grandma's when we were kids! ;)

circs can be used for everything you want to knit so if you like them you certainly do not need to have double of everything.

until of course you find that you have filled all your needles and you MUST cast on another project! :rofling:

Darcy
07-13-2006, 01:00 PM
:oops:

rebecca
07-13-2006, 01:25 PM
Hang in there ;) As everyone has said...we have had the same experience...practice, I'm afraid is the answer! LOL, when I began I knit the knit st for days on end, then when I felt kind of comfortable with it, I learned to purl and purled for days on end, too. I think that we all start differently, but, practice is the key. And, please don't feel embarrassed or intimidated by the knitting terms...LOL, it took me forever before I knew what on earth frogging was (taking your knitting apart ;) ).
You hang in there and remember...knitting is fun ;)

origami
07-14-2006, 01:09 AM
Hi Darcy!

I agree with the advice you've gotten here. Get some acrylic or wool-acrylic blend yarn and just practice first. Knitting a scarf might be a good first project because you don't have to worry about rows of 104 stitches.
You can always use the pattern for your poncho with some other yarn and use that cotton yarn for dishcloths & facecloths -- knitting square swatches is wonderful practice and instant gratification knitting. You'll have a finished product. Try not to do too much at first, develop your technique, use the Knitting Help site (how I learned how to knit!) and you'll get better and better.