Monday, August 25, 2008

Teach Yourself Knitting

Charis asked, in a comment on one of yesterday's posts, how she could go about learning how to knit. So here are some suggestions:

Personally, I think nothing beats learning from an actual, real life person. I think my first suggestion would be to either find someone who's willing to teach you for free (friends are good for this...too bad Charis isn't closer to Baltimore) or to take a class. Is there a knitting shop in the area? They will usually offer classes or will, for a price, sit down with you one-on-one and teach you. I think at The Black Sheep $35 will get you an hour of one-on-one knitting tutorial on the subject of your choice.

But if books are your only option --

I've heard good things about the "Teach Yourself Visually" books. There is Teach Yourself Knitting as well as a volume that will teach you knitting and crocheting. I haven't used them but my neighbor has used the Teach Yourself Sock Knitting and likes it a good bit, I believe.

Amazon has another beginning knitting book that seems to get good reviews and looks okay in the snatches of pages you get to preview. It's called Getting Started Knitting. And there may be other books. I would just make sure that whatever book you get has lots of pictures. Knitting instruction truly is a place where a picture is worth a thousand garbled, confusing words.

Take a trip to your library to see if they have any good beginning knitting books. That might at least help you rule some books out. Though our library, I must say, has a pretty paltry knitting section.

There are also lots of helpful sites on line. With videos, which are helpful. has a library of videos. They aren't exhaustive (they show two methods of casting on when there are quite a few more than that) but they would be helpful in combination with a book.

My biggest piece of advice: There's no right or wrong way to knit. As long as you are happy with your process and your product, then you're fine. There may always be something new to learn, but there's no way anyone can tell you "Hey, you're doing that all wrong!"

Well, perhaps if you were knitting this way...

Note to non-knitters: Those are the wrong ends of the needles....

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