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Old 02-07-2006, 12:26 AM   #1
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Normal knit and Combinded Purling?

I'm brand new to knitting, 2 months give or take. I asked for a knitting needles and yarn for xmas :D . They were recieved along with a book on how to teach yourself. I was all for teaching myself, 'cept the book wasnt any help, it only detered me from knitting. I surfed many a site until I found I love it here ! I began by just watching all the basic videos until I could find a form or two I could work with.

So now Im working with the Continental style. The knit stitch I can do with my eyes closed, maintaining great tension and all...its the purl stitch I cant quite do as fluid as I had hoped. I started looking at the other types of purling videos and saw that the combinded purl stitch is seem more fluid...expect that Amy has said you MUST do it with the combinded Knit stitch...

I'm working in a round( 29'' #9[5 1/4mm] needle) for my 1st project, which at some point will be a throw with lots of different patterns and stitch combos taken from this site so I can get a grasp knitting.

So what Id like do know is

1) why MUST it be used with combinded knit?
2) what will happen if I Continental knit a row then Combinded Purl the next? or try K1 P1 with normal knit and Combinded purl?
3) Knitting back in a round, can it be done aswell to make a purl stitch?

Thanks in advance to anyone who can help me out
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Old 02-07-2006, 08:46 AM   #2
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I don't know that much about combined knitting, but I believe that when you knit in the combined manner, you twist the stitches, so you have to untwist them on the next pass when you purl.

Maybe you can purl English? That you can do with conti knitting.
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Old 02-08-2006, 11:37 AM   #3
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Stitches ride the needle with one leg on either side, front and back. As you stretch the stitches apart, you can see that one leg leans toward the tip of the needle (the leading leg), like:


and one leg leans toward the other end, like:


In conventional Western knitting, all the leading legs are on the front side of the needle, the trailing leg on the back.

If you enter a stitch from the front left of the leading leg AND you wrap the yarn counterclockwise around the needle, the stitch you produce will have its leading leg face the same direction as the stitch you just knit.

If, however, you enter the stitch from the front left of the trailing leg OR wrap the yarn clockwise, you will reverse which leg ends up leading. This is a half-twist to the stitch.

The same thing happens with purlling. If you enter the stitch from the back right of the trailing leg or wrap the yarn clockwise, you give the stitch a half twist, but in the opposite direction.

The stitches are not permanently twisted at this point, though. If you wanted to, you could slip each stitch from the needle and reverse its direction. A tedious process at best.

OR, as in combined knitting, you can untwist the stitches by using your knowledge of how leading leg and direction of yarn wrap affect the lie of the stitch to give the stitches a half twist back in the other direction, thus straightening them out. It's not hard, in fact, the yarn will 'fight' you trying to do it any other way, as you'd be effectively completing the twist.

The disadvantage to combined knitting isn't really circular knitting. It's that you have to be aware of which leg is leading so that you enter the stitch correctly, which is sometimes the leg in front of the needle, and sometimes the leg in back. All depends on what happened the row before. This is hard to teach a knitting newbie.


1.- Combined knit and purl must be used together to produce the conventional little columns of stacking v's in the fabric. Using one without the other will result in every other row having tight, twisted stitches.

2. A Western-continental knit row followed by a combined purl row won't look too terribly unusual. It's when you follow a combined purl row with a Western-continental knit row that you will produce something that is in all likelihood not a part of your intended pattern.

Ribbing works very nicely in combined style. Because you quickly get a feel for the leading leg thing, the fabric itself clues you in to when it's time to knit or purl without even counting stitches. I find it much harder to make a mistake in ribbing when using combined style.

3. Stockinette in the round is just handled as conventional continental stitches. While it is certainly possible to knit backwards to produce the equivalent of a purl row, it's much harder to do in practice than one would think.
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