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Old 09-21-2009, 12:45 PM   #1
queenbean
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Reeeeally new at this, and confused
I'm very new at knitting, and I want so badly to learn. But I'm a little dense. I am getting pretty good at doing the long-tail cast-on, but I dont' know what to do at the end of a row, when I want to turn and start another row. Do I pick up the last stitch, or skip it? It seems that when I pick up the last stitch on both ends, each row gets progressively longer, but when I skip it, it looks weird. I don't know what to do.

Also, how tight are you supposed to pull the stitches? I'm having trouble getting them even.

Any help would be appreciated. Sorry for the n00b questions. I briefly looked over the forum and didn't see these questions previously asked, so I apologize if this is a repeat. Thanks in advance!
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Old 09-21-2009, 12:59 PM   #2
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Just knit the last stitch. It may not be knitting the last stitch that makes the rows longer, but accidentally knitting an extra stitch in the first stitch. If you have the yarn over the top of the needle to the back, it pulls up the first stitch so the 2 legs of it look like 2 sts. Hold the yarn out to the side and you can see where to knit the first stitch easier.

Don't worry about your tension for now, and don't pull the yarn after you make a stitch. Even sts come with practice and washing the item when you're done evens them out a lot.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:02 PM   #3
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Thanks, suzeeq! I'll pay attention to that.
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:03 PM   #4
Jan in CA
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Welcome to Knitting Help!!

First of all don't worry about how tight or loose the stitches are at this point. The tension will come with practice.

I'm not sure why it's increasing if you're just knitting the stitches on the needle. Did you count them and there are more or is it just wider? Wider is normal if your cast on is tight and your stitches are loose. If that's the case it's a tension issue that will resolve with practice.

Watch this Demo of a Small Project and it should help.
http://www.knittinghelp.com/videos/knitting-tips
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Old 09-21-2009, 01:07 PM   #5
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Jan, it did just look wider -- I didn't count the stitches. That makes sense. I do think my cast-on is a lot tighter than the rest of my stitches. I haven't made anything more than 3 or 4 rows, because I'm just trying to get the hang of making the stitches -- maybe if I made some more rows, it would even out a bit.

Thanks for the welcome, and the tips! I'm really excited about learning. I found this site about a year ago, but I am just now getting the time to sit and really practice.
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Old 09-21-2009, 02:03 PM   #6
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I am working on a small project right now, and I made sure to count the stitches -- even though it looks wider, each row is exactly 15 stitches, so it's just a problem of tension. I pulled on it a bit after a few rows and it evened out. Thanks for the advice!

Now to learn how to finish the thing... I know there's a video for that, I'm gonna go watch it.
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Old 09-21-2009, 04:59 PM   #7
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Just keep going. It's probably good to practice the cast on, (and a tight one may be what you have, not more sts) but knit a couple or three feet instead of starting over. That will help you learn to keep an even tension. When you cast on, don't pull tight on the yarn, especially the thumb yarn if you're using long tail CO. That will help your edge to come out as wide as the rest of it.
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Old 09-21-2009, 05:31 PM   #8
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Oh, ok. I have been pulling the thumb yarn tight during the cast-on. How tight should it be? I thought it needed to be pretty tight to keep it from getting all messy.
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Old 09-21-2009, 07:33 PM   #9
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You'll figure out how tight by practicing. I know we keep saying that, but we've all been there and know that's what it takes. You'll learn that if it's too tight you loosen up or vise versa. It's hard for us to tell you exactly what to do because each person knits a little differently. That's why patterns have a gauge/tension listed on them.

Anyway.. practice, practice, practice. That first "scarf" that you knit looks pretty bad at first, but watch as you knit that 2 or 3 feet and it'll look better as it goes along. Kind of cool really!
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Old 09-21-2009, 07:47 PM   #10
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Looser than you've been doing it. As I said, don't pull tight on it. The LT cast on can be stretchy, so it will pull in if it needs to, but should be loose enough to 'give' a little. Take some extra yarn and practice it a bit; cast on about 20 sts, then knit several rows. Cast on again and try your tension a different way. See what gives you a better result - not too tight and not too loose.
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