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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Proposing A Knit-Along

My daughter, when she was nine, once declared, "I'm brave enough to knit!"

Applause for all of you who, like Cerena Fflur, are brave enough to knit.  You are linked in a tradition that joins like minds—across continents, across languages, across time.

Really, it's pretty simple, this pulling one loop through another to create a fabric that is shaped into a garment even as the work is done on the needles.

All you need to begin is a good way to cast on (put stitches on the needle), a way to draw one loop through another (snagging it forward, called knitting; pushing it backward, called purling), and a way to bind off (remove the stitches from the needle without their becoming unraveled).  This much will get you a dishcloth, a scarf—or a bedspread, if you keep at it long enough.

If, along the way, you acquire a few good methods for increasing and decreasing your stitch count, you can shape your knitting into hats, vests, sweaters, and such.  You can even knit lace.  "And from this point," in the words of the sailor standing at the pier, "you can go anywhere in the world."

So I propose we embark on a knit-along.  Find some yarn—an inexpensive worsted would be appropriate—and a pair of needles (#10 would be good), or, even better, a circular needle.  Plastic is fine. 

We're going to knit some swatches together.  They'll be milestones and mementoes. 

Tomorrow we begin.  Bring a friend, if you like.

You experienced hands stick around or check in from time to time.  After awhile, I'm going to show an excellent cast-on method I'll bet few of you will have encountered.  Did you know there are at least nine different ways, each with its own best use?  We'll cover six of them.

Coming up:

The Long-Tail Cast-On
The Knit-On
The Cable Cast-On
The Loop On (Single-Edge)
The English Long-Tail
The Provisional Cast-On


  1. how did you know that casting on is the thing I dislike most about knitting ?? :o)

  2. hopefully we'll find one that will help?