Over the past few winters I've been practicing my knitting. I was taught to knit originally by my grannie when I was younger, so I knew the basics, but I had never really practiced until I became interested again a few years ago. I have been buying wool and needles from markets and op shops and teaching myself using youtube.
I never like to spend time practicing something just for the sake of it, I like to make something that I can use, so I have been trying to find things to make that help me to refine my technique, but are also simple and ultimately useful. Obviously I can't launch into huge projects while I'm still struggling to knit consistently and neatly, but I managed to find a few small things to knit that have really helped me to gain the confidence to make something larger.
|This is what I made this winter to practice before I make something bigger.|
Here's what I have come up with as suggestions for beginner knitters to practice:
- Headband or ear-warmer - this can be as simple as a strip of 10-15 stitches knitted in either garter stitch or stockinette stitch, keep going until it reaches around your head and then stitch the ends together to form a band. For something different you can add stripes of colours, or try a fancy knitting stitch.
- Button-up snood - this is just a short scarf (you could make a scarf, but that takes longer!), again, you can add stripes or fancy stitches. I took the opportunity to practice ribbing at each end and added button holes. I started with 30 stitches and knitted until it was long enough to go around my neck.
- Snood in the round - a great way to experiment with needles "in the round" is to knit up a simple snood. If you get it twisted, its called a helical snood (great for covering mistakes!).
- Arm-warmers - this is a great way to practice knitting on double-pointed needles. Just make a hole for the thumbs using the same technique as for a button-hole. I like to add stripes to this one too, but could also be done with a fancy stitch. Ribbing at the top stops the top from folding over.
- Tablet or phone cover - we bought a new tablet and I decided to knit a cover for it instead of buying a cover. I just knitted a long strip in the right size and sewed up the seams. Again, you can add whatever techniques you need to practice.
- Socks - this might seem like an odd one for beginners, but after you've figured out double-pointed needles, you have most of the skills to finish socks as well, you just have to really concentrate on the pattern!
Lately I have been side-tracked with crochet, so I haven't knitted anything bigger yet. I am wearing my arm-warmers and ear warmer as I type though!
What do you think is a good project for learning to knit?
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Previous posts about knitting and crochet: