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Old 07-12-2005, 11:10 PM   #1
Vixen
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new and a little bit pathetic
I learned to knit yesterday at a 2 hour class for beginners. I bought my yarn and needles and spent a lot of the day today ripping out stiches (yes, frogging, I know) and then starting all over. The yarn keeps breaking which is making me think I should have bought something different. Also, I have way more stiches than I started with. Frankly, the "scarf" I am knitting is so sad looking that it is funny!


Here are my 3 questions:

1. any suggestions on a yarn that might be good for beginners? The instructor strongly suggested wool and the one I bought is kind of fuzzy making things more difficult.

2. how in the world did I add stiches with out trying? I cast on 34 stitches and I have over 40 now.

3. how long did it take you before you knew what you were doing? I just need a little encouragement to keep trying.

Thanks very much! I appreciate any words of wisdom!
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:21 PM   #2
Ingrid
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Yarn shouldn't break. Go out and buy yourself a skein of inexpensive acrylic or blend for your 'starter yarn'. It doesn't have to be the cheap-o stuff. Plymouth Encore or Lion Woolease are both blends that are a decent yarn, yet not too expensive.

One of the biggest hurdles for new knitters is to keep the number of stitches even. Some lose them, some gain them. If you're doing any kind of ribbing, it's common to forget to put the yarn in the proper position for the stitch you're making--in back for knit, in front for purl. If you want, you can put a stitch marker on the needle every 10 stitches or so and keep counting.

Do yourself a favor--save the frogging for a later date. Just keep knitting. If you make a mistake, so what? Get used to knitting and purling. The more you knit, the more even your stitches will become and the more confident you'll get. Your first finished object doesn't have to be model perfect.

LOOK at your knitting. See what the knit stitches look like. Learn to recognize what happens when you purl. One of the best things you can learn, and it won't happen on your second day of knitting, is to understand the effect what you're actually doing has on the piece of work.

Hang in there. There are knitters on this forum who have been knitting for only a few months and are turning out amazing stuff. You can too!
Here's a secret----it ain't rocket science!
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:25 PM   #3
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well i would say your yarn is probably breaking because you are pulling too tight. one thing that us new people tend to do after we make the stitch is give it an extra tug before doing the next stitch which makes yuor knitting too tight. the only time i ever really find the need to give that tug is after the first stitch in the row.

you are likely adding stitches in that very first stitch after you turn your work. if you are doing all knit stitches when you get to the end and turn often you will find that your yarn goes up OVER the needle. When that happens it usually looks like there is an extra stitch there to work. You need to make sure you are pulling that yarn down and behind the needle. If your yarn isn't too thick you can usually fix the occasional extra stitch by just knitting two together. don't do a whole bunch of them at once and it is better not to do it at the beginning of the row, just do it in the middle somewhere. that Knit 2 will be kind of tight to work but you can do it.

i started with a really thick wool yarn. easy to see the stitches with! apparently teachers like to tell people to use a lighter yarn...*shrug* mine was dark red and black so who knows.

i have been knitting since february and still do very basic stuff....Kelly has been knitting for about the same time and does AMAZING stuff (including SOX!) It just depends on the time you have and what you want to do. I am pretty content to do square stuff so i don't try too hard to do other stuff. there is one lady who was making hand warmers five days after starting. Don't worry about others....just keep working at it and you will be knittin' like crazy soon enough! and don't hesitate to ask questions....we love to help

and do what the rest of us do...watch and watch and watch the videos and you will get it really quick!!
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:25 PM   #4
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Thanks for the great advice!! I will go out tomorrow and buy a different yarn and just keep going. :XX:
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Old 07-12-2005, 11:25 PM   #5
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oh well heck....yeah what she said much faster than me!...lol
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Old 07-13-2005, 01:23 AM   #6
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Hi, I dont really have any help to offer as I am new as well. I am just learning and I know how you feel, specially with the adding stitches part. I feel hopeless but am getting better. I just wanted to say stick with it and keep going, you will get better as you go along. It really does get easier and it is so rewarding when you look back and see you have made something.
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Old 07-13-2005, 07:43 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by brendajos
Kelly has been knitting for about the same time and does AMAZING stuff (including SOX!)
Actually, my socks are sitting like orphans on my dresser because I screwed up somewhere....

I agree with everyone's advice....I started with a big fat yarn and big fat needles, too. Lion Brand WoolEase Thick & Quick, to be exact. It is a bit easier to see the anatomy of your stitches with a lighter-colored yarn. That is very important, as Ingrid said above.

I would bet that you are accidentally creating "Yarn-Overs", moving the working yarn to the front before making the next knit st. But....just think. NOW when a pattern ASKS for a YO, you will already know how to do it! You learned a new stitch without even trying! WAY TO GO!

And/or, you arent moving the yarn down & back when you turn to start the next row, so you are knitting into both of the "legs" of the st below. I dont think Ive ever seen a pattern that asks for that. :thinking:

Knitting is awkward for everyone in the beginning. You just have to find your own comfortable way to hold your yarn & needles, your own pace, and your own tension. It will come. I promise!
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Old 07-13-2005, 08:52 AM   #8
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Also, if you haven't checked out the videos at this site, be sure and do so. You are so fortunate that you found this place so early in your knitting career. :D I think I struggled along about a week or so, at the brink of tossing my needles in the trash, when I stumbled upon Amy's videos . Watching her hands as she knits helped me to finally "get" it.

Oh, and welcome!
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Old 07-13-2005, 02:12 PM   #9
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Wow! All this support is just great. I am on my way to buy new yarn and fatter needles and will give this another shot this afternoon. I am sure I'll be back with more questions, and appreciate the kindness of everyone!
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Old 07-13-2005, 02:24 PM   #10
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i started on size 15 needles with big fat yarn. I haven't used the 15s in a while though every so often i pic up the scarf-like thing i am working on (not sure what it wants to be yet!) 17s. The other day i started working on something with 15s and i felt like a kid in kindergarten with the big fat crayons! honestly, i like the way scarves with big fat yarn look like with big fat needles!
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