View Full Version : I am intimidated!

03-16-2009, 10:20 AM
I am learning how to knit. I know how to do a long tail cast-on, knit and purl and am making my first scarf doing just that...knitting and purling. :happydance: Anyways, I want to make a hat next on circular needles, but i'm intimidated! I mean, I can't even fix my mistakes on my scarf....it all looks like a jumbled mess to me, and I had to take it into a local yarn shop to get them to help me. I've been looking at videos of here of all the increases, decreases, knitting in the round, double points...I'm very overwhelmed to say the least after watching those videos! I have only had like a 1 hour lesson so far,so I know I have a long way to go but I'm kinda wondering if I'll be able to "get knitting"...It seems kinda hard. :oo: Do you have any tips that may help me along the way? I really enjoy the small bit of knitting I do know how to do and would like to make this a long-term hobby for me.:)

03-16-2009, 11:06 AM
One way you can learn to "read" your knitting is to knit up a small (maybe 4") square, and intentionally make certain mistakes in the knitting, marking them with a safety pin or stitch marker, and continuing to knit. Write down what mistakes you made on which marker. Then when you're done with the square, go back and take each safety pin out one by one as you "read" what your mistakes look like.

03-16-2009, 11:18 AM
I'm not sure how to use a stitch marker:blush: I guess it's off to the knitting videos again:teehee: Thanks for the tip! One more question...Does a hat on circular needles sound like a good second project for a beginner? Or is there another project that would be better? I'm doing great at the scarf as long as I don't have to fix any mistakes.:mrgreen:

03-16-2009, 11:41 AM
I've just pm'ed you a simple hat on dpns which can be used with any yarn for any size head. (The way it's charted won't work well in the format of this reply box.) I'd print it out and circle the numbers for which yarn and which size you're making.
And don't worry about being confused at this point. It takes time to figure it all out. No one's born knowing how to do this-- we all went through it. Good luck!

03-16-2009, 11:45 AM
Oops, I just realized that the same problem will come up in a PM message. Why don't you copy what I sent, paste it into your word processor and then just increase the margins in the document. Then the numbers will all line up correctly.

And about the stitch markers-- they are just little plastic rings you slide onto your needles between 2 stitches to show where you are. If they come between the needles on dpns, then just use a small safety pin and pin in between 2 sts not far below the needles so you know where you are.

Jan in CA
03-16-2009, 11:50 AM
It can be intimidating, but I've learned that it's all much easier than it looks. You can't learn if you don't try so go for it! We are here to help.

Circular stitch markers go ON the needles to mark a stitch before or after it. Sometimes you might have two with a stitch in the center. They are used to denote that you'll be doing something like an increase or decrease or they can be used to just mark a certain number of stitches.

I'm glad you've watched the videos. Here's some more help that is just photos if you need to see it that way, too.

Here's a hat video -

03-16-2009, 12:35 PM
I promise you will get it! My first project didn't even have purls in it at all- it was all knit!

Once you knit more, you will learn how to see what you have done and learn ways to fix it. (like knit stitches look like v's, and purl stitches have a bump)

If you want to try the hat, cast on for that sucker and just start knitting! You can do it- and we're here if you run into trouble. When I started knitting I tried to learn at least one new thing with every project (except for a strange compulsion to knit little baby hats, I could NOT stop making them one right after the other in all their little top-knot or earflap cuteness). Since I would rather have a useful item- I practiced new techniques on actual projects. Dishcloths are good to practice on- anything kinda small.

Good luck, be fearless in knitting, and YOU CAN DO IT!

03-16-2009, 12:49 PM
Don't get too discouraged! It will all fall into place eventually! I stuck with alot of scarves to get really familiar with reading my knitting, then added different things (such as cables) to keep the project interesting and to keep myself learning! I have made a couple of baby sweaters (I was scared to death to try it) and it is much easier than you would think! One thing I was told was not to read too far into a pattern, but just dive in and do it...one row at a time. That gave me ALOT of confidence!

So, I just finished my very first hat, knit in the round on circs and finished with dpns..... and it was a lace pattern. I had neither knit in the round or used dpns before because I was too scared. Well, now I know I can do it (though I'm not sure I did the dpn part exactly right, but it came out looking ok!) and it has given me the confidence to go on and try something else...maybe even socks!

03-16-2009, 12:56 PM
Thanks everyone!! I am excited to learn more!!:thumbsup: I hope I can get the hang of it easily.:mrgreen:

03-16-2009, 01:18 PM
Good for you, but DON'T be intimidated, you learn much MORE from your mistakes than your successes (in anything in life). So venture on and if it's something you can't fix, all you have to do is frog and start over, it's not as if the needles and yarn will be unusable, right?!? ;)

03-16-2009, 01:22 PM
BTW, one thing I did when moving to circulars for the first time was to put the little rubber ends of the needles I wasn't using. Those were like my training wheels and after a while I didn't need them anymore and it gave me confidence and experience working with 4 or 5 needles at once!

Another thing I learned is that the wooden needles lose stitches less often because they aren't so slippery, so you might get yourself a set of those for your first project. By your second circular project you will probably feel confident enough to use the faster aluminum ones!

03-19-2009, 02:47 PM
Lots of good advice. The only thing I would add, and this helped my wife a lot, would be to get a good understanding of the construction of a knitted or purled project. Once you understand the construction of knitted fabric, which is basically loops pulled though loops, it makes things a lot easier because you understand what the directions are trying to achieve.

03-19-2009, 03:34 PM
I'm with Ladyfirelyght (hope I spelled that right). Make mistakes on purpose. I practiced dropping stitches and picking them up until I had no fear.

(or no fear anyway until I tore out about 12 rows of a lace pattern over 1 repeat thinking that I could fix my mistake in just that area and pick them all up again.)

03-19-2009, 03:59 PM
(or no fear anyway until I tore out about 12 rows of a lace pattern over 1 repeat thinking that I could fix my mistake in just that area and pick them all up again.)

I've done that. And I figured it out eventually. But it took an hour, a drink, and the air was blue by the time I was done! It would have been much faster to simply tink or frog back. :)

Mind you, I've gotten VERY good at frogging back.

03-19-2009, 04:38 PM
Also, since you've started on straight needles (knitting and purling)..remember when you work a project in the round (once you've joined it) and to achieve stockinette stitch you will only need to use a "knit" stitch..round and round(this will give you a stockinette stitch..) You can do it...:thumbsup:

03-19-2009, 05:53 PM
I've just finished my first big project - a sweater for myself - on circulars... my first time...
I reknit it 3 times and the neck, 4 times.... got a bit nasty there for a while but someone here gave me some good advice...
It's only yarn, it's only knitting... they said...
In other words, doing over is nothing to be scared about. For one thing you learn so much...
I've started my first sock now and I've had a devil of a time with it but I kept on going and now, after about 12 rip outs, the sock is finally begun...:thumbsup:
If I can do it, you can do it.:hug: because I'm all thumbs...:teehee: