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Renee1160
04-11-2009, 01:12 PM
Hi All,
I'm very new to knitting, have done one scarf of knit stich only. Just learned the purl stitch. I always am looking one step ahead of what I might learn next. My question is that I can't seem to grasp in my mind the process of knitting a blanket or afghan. Most are very wide, how do all of the stitches go on the needles? I looked at some patterns, but I think I'm too new to know how to read the instructions. I have always wanted to knit and at age 48, sat down one weekend started watching videos from this site and one on U-tube and now I've knited a scarf. I'm certainly not going to take on a blanket project right now, but would like to keep in mind what I'm woking towards. I'm really not in to the toys, hats, etc. Pretty much would like to do scarfs, blankets, shawls.

Sorry for the winded post, any advice would be appreciated.

Renee

suzeeq
04-11-2009, 01:35 PM
Unless the blanket is done in panels and sewn together, it's much easier to use a circular needle as the cord can hold 2-3 times its length. They can be use for flat knitting, as well as in the round. Many shawls need to be done on circs too, to hole the large number of sts.

stisdale
04-11-2009, 05:46 PM
Welcome to the fun and exciting world of knitting! :hug:

To answer your questions:

To knit a blanket all on one set of needles you would generally need to use circular knitting needles, they look like THIS:
http://www.paviyarns.co.uk/shop/images/subnav/682.jpg

Basically it's two knitting needles attached together so you can have a REALLY wide piece on it. Circular needles vary in length to accomdoate smaller or larger projects.

Blankets can be a bit intimidating, ESPECIALLY a full sized bed blanket or something. I would recommend doing an extremely small blanket (roughly 100-150 stitches) that you can give to a friend who is having a baby, or donate. Sometimes blankets can become a little daunting as they take SOOO much work to finish and some people (ahem, me) get a little flustered when the project takes so much time. BUT the reward is GREAT when you finish it. I am just wrapping up a baby blanket for my aunt and even though it took me 2 months, I am so excited about it!

I hope that helps answer your question, please feel free to ask anymore questions you have or PM me if you need more help too!

Happy knitting! :knitting:

Renee1160
04-11-2009, 06:18 PM
Thanks for the info about circular. After i posted my question, I thought about it and seemed to think the circular needles were the answer. But, have never even held any or seen how they work. I'm assuming there is a video I can watch, and yes, I'll definitely start with a small blanket or even a shawl. But that's much in the future, still just working on getting some of the stitches down and learning to read pattern directions.

suzeeq
04-11-2009, 06:30 PM
To knit a flat piece, you use them the same way you use straights - when you get to the end of the row, swap the right needle to the left hand and the left one to the right hand.

Renee1160
04-11-2009, 06:43 PM
Thanks, it's beginning to make sense now, not as difficult as it looks.

suzeeq
04-11-2009, 06:46 PM
It really isn't and many of us prefer to use circs for all knitting. They can be very versatile.

Jan in CA
04-11-2009, 07:09 PM
I never use straight needles anymore except for double pointed needles occasionally. Many of us use Knitpicks Options (http://www.knitpicks.com/knitting+needles.html) and love them! The cord is thin and flexible and never curls. You can buy just one set of needles and cable or a fixed circular needle to try. Or you can try those you can get from local stores. Just make sure it's long enough if you want to do an afghan on it. I'd say 32 in or longer for a project that big.