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KKinkade 07-28-2010 11:09 PM

i'm left handed and need help
:grrr: :hmm: i'm new at knitting so i need help i'm left handed so if you can't help me don't bother posting anything. i mostly need to learn how to purl and i have a question... what happens if you use a different size needle than it calls for in the pattern?

Ingrid 07-28-2010 11:12 PM

I have taught several lefties to knit. Since all the patterns and instructions are for knitting 'rightie' then it's best to learn that way.

You might want to try knitting Continental style since your left hand holds the yarn.

Hang in there! It will feel awkward at first, but the more you knit, the more you'll adapt to make it easiest for you.

suzeeq 07-29-2010 12:08 AM


what happens if you use a different size needle than it calls for in the pattern?
That depends on a number of things.... If you use a larger needle you'll get a larger piece and the stitches may be more open and looser than you like. If you use a smaller size, you'll get a smaller piece and the sts may be tighter and denser than you want. However, if it's just one size different, there may not be much difference. Patterns give a gauge so you'll end up with something the same size and you may have to adjust the needle size given because the designer may knit tighter or looser than you.

Short answer - try it and see what happens.

Jan in CA 07-29-2010 02:18 AM

There are few sites dedicated to actually knitting left handed, but I know personally only one person who does it that way. She has to translate how to do things a lot of times. Most lefties I know knit right handed with the yarn in whichever hand is most comfortable to them.

I can tell you I'm right handed and it was awkward for me as it is for anyone learning to knit. Hang in there, you can do it! :thumbsup:

hyperactive 07-29-2010 04:41 AM

I agree with the girls: Knitting is so depending on both hands that it does not matter SO much, if you are right handed or left handed.
Continental style would be advisable. That is my style of knitting, too. And it does demand more of the left hand than the right, especially with purling (regular, not Norwegian).

have you tried to do "regular" handed knitting with your working needle on the right and your stitches to be worked on the left?

I think knitting is like piano playing or typing on keyboards in that way: you just need both hands to perform their tasks. It is a little like guitar, too. Both hands do different stuff, but a lot is easier for left handed people, because the left hand is challenged a lot in the "regular" way.

But if you chose to knit left handed ("the other way around") then that is entirely your choice. I just checked youtube for you:

There are videos on the topic. This here is specifically on left handed knitting and purl stitch:

Problem is that you are not only working from the other side as in left and right, but also from the other side as in front and back loop.
The video should help you!

Kbish 07-31-2010 12:23 AM

My grandmother was left-handed too, and she always tucked the right-hand needle under her arm and let the left needle be the most active. This may help with your purling, however it will get you into trouble if you want to branch out into using circular or dpns.

Just keep working at it!

N0obKnitter 08-01-2010 01:56 PM

I concur with the Continental...

Shandeh 08-05-2010 11:05 PM

I'm teaching two left-handed children how to knit right now.

One of them is learning left-handed, because she had already been learning on her own that way. I didn't want to discourage her from doing it the way she wanted. I've told her that all of her projects will be mirror-images of right-handed knitters, and that she will occasionally have to make changes in the design. She is an intelligent girl, so I'm sure she'll be fine with it.

Here are the Left Handed Knitting videos I found:
LH Cast on and Knit:
LH Cast on and Knit Continental:
LH Purl:
LH Purl Continental:
LH Drop Stitch Scarf:

My other left-handed student is younger (only 8 years old), so I'm teaching her to knit right-handed. She is doing fine with it! She loves knitting, and always looks forward to her lessons.

Good luck with your knitting! :hug:

ShanaHoo 08-05-2010 11:58 PM

Lefty Opinion

Originally Posted by KKinkade (Post 1295891)
:grrr: :hmm: i'm new at knitting so i need help i'm left handed so if you can't help me don't bother posting anything. i mostly need to learn how to purl and i have a question... what happens if you use a different size needle than it calls for in the pattern?

I am also left handed. The thing with knitting is that it doesn't really matter because you use both hands no matter what. I found that Continental was much easier than English because there's less motion.

I mean, you can learn to knit "left-handed" (right needle to left needle) if you REALLY want to (and I did), but I have found that it is not worth the hassle of having to alter patterns and figure out mirror images like some of the ladies have explained. You're going to be using both hands either way, so make your life easier and learn one of the more common styles.

My only left-handed purl tip is to be gentle with your needles. I notice when I'm doing lots of purl work, My left thumb gets really stressed and cramped from trying to control the left needle with it and pressing/holding too tightly. I have to constantly remind myself to loosen up.

Related: August 13th is Left Handed Day! Only about 10% of the population is left handed, so celebrate BEING AWESOME. Remember, they say everyone was born right handed, and only the greatest overcome it :thumbsup: (Hey, this smiley is left handed, too!)

suzeeq 08-07-2010 08:23 AM

Whether you primarily use your right or left hand to do things with - writing, eating.

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