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Blog Week Day 4: All the Things I Wish I Knew

I love my knitting! But there's so much I want to know.
I love my knitting! But there’s so much I want to know.
Welcome to Day 4 of Blog Week. What is today’s topic, you might ask? Ahem. What new skill would I like to learn? Wow. That sure sounds like a simple question. I guess it is! And the answer is simple, too. What do I still want to learn about knitting? The answer? A lot. Got a comfortable chair? This could take a while; I have an ever-growing list.

  • Gauge. So important, and such a basic step in knitting. Counting stitches to know what your gauge is. And yet, this is one thing that I’m still really bad at doing. I think it’s because I have eye tracking problems that counting is hard for me. I’ve tried various magnifiers and whatnot, but I’m still not that great at counting. Sounds like a simple thing to do, right? But yet, get it wrong, and it is the root of all that is evil with my knitting.
  • Measuring, in general. I really do want to learn how to take good measurements so that once I get the gauge thing figured out, I can really know how to knit actual garments that fit.
  • Colorwork. Whether it’s Selbuvotter mittens or a Fassett-inspired color explosion, I’d like to be able to work with more than one yarn at a time and not make a mess of things. Most people say that holding one yarn in each hand is the answer, but not for me. So, I just need to keep at it until I can figure out what feels comfortable someday.
  • Steeks. The very thought of knitting and knitting and knitting something for months on end and then taking a pair of scissors to it makes me dizzy. I think I need to learn how to do a crocheted steek since I don’t sew and I don’t own a sewing machine.
  • And since I mentioned it, Seaming. My seams are messy and awful. I’ve had one person sit with me once while I sewed two swatches together, and once, Lea-Ann McGregor even sat with me patiently on the phone, explaining the whole thing to me and talking me through it.
  • Fixing Brioche Stitch.Brioche stitch is one of my all-time favorite stitches in knitting. And yet, when I drop a stitch, which I always do, it is me after all, doing the knitting, I find it impossible to pick up the stitches correctly and keep going. I guess I need to practice more. Brioche stitch has so many possibilities for exciting shapes and color combinations, and I want to master the technique so I can take my knitting in all kinds of crazy directions.

Phew! Every time I learn something new in knitting it always leads to something else I want to know. I’d love to be like my Italian aunt, who is smaller than I am in every way. She was wearing a handknit sweater that I really loved, that I had raved about, and I asked her if she could make me one, too. She said, “Sure!” and asked me what was my favorite color. (Purple, of course!) Six weeks later, I had my sweater. And it fits so comfortably… I love it. She did it by “feel,” that is to say she never asked me my size and never took a measurement. Just went to work and knit the sweater on instinct. And it’s my favorite to this day. I wish I could do that.

I think I need lessons, Real, actual knitting lessons from someone who knows all of these smarty-farty knitting things. I’d love to shadow a Master Knitter, and really learn how it’s done. Is there ever such a thing as knowing it all in knitting? That’s what I really want. Why is that so much to ask?

See you tomorrow…

12 responses to “Blog Week Day 4: All the Things I Wish I Knew”

  1. Mary Marshall Fowler Avatar

    Have you looked into knitting a moebius muffler or a moebius scarf?
    There are some photos at the web site.

    When I first found out about moebius strips I didn’t have any friends who knitted.

    Now, a lot of young men and women who are into mathematics also are into knitting.

  2. Fiolinn Avatar

    Seaming is one of my topics today too. It’s difficult!

  3. Becky Avatar

    That’s an impressive list of things you’d like to do. I love taking classes; it’s so much easier to do things after I see them.

  4. Kathryn Avatar

    Me too! I’ve got so much more to learn even though I’ve been knitting for years. I can’t imagine ever knowing everything. I’d never even heard of steeking before yesterday! Or maybe I had and just not known the name for it.

  5. Vivianne Avatar

    Wow, that’s some list 🙂

  6. Alexandra Avatar

    I wrote about steeks and colorwork too! I’m hoping to learn the one-color-in-each-hand technique.

    Brioche stitch is very pretty, although I’ve never tried it, it looks complicated. I like your idea about using it with colors, very interesting!

  7. Rae Avatar

    Colorwork & seaming made it on my list too. I would love to have wonderful gauge.

  8. WorstedKnitt Avatar

    Seaming! I hate seaming too! But my problem is I don’t actually want to learn it either 😀

  9. WifeMomKnitter Avatar

    So far, I’ve only seamed one sweater and the stripes don’t line up. After that I started to look at sweater patterns, knit from the top down or raglan style. I’ve made two so far and the ability to “try as you go” is great for getting the garment to fit me.

  10. rachel Avatar

    I mentioned colorwork on my blog, but steeking is another skill I’d love to learn too. Nothing scarier than taking a pair of scissors to your knitting!

  11. AC Avatar

    I took a class on finishing (including seaming) and it completely changed the look of my knitting. I didn’t even know I was doing it wrong. Maybe a class would help? It’s always nice to be surrounded by a group of people who also don’t know what they’re doing. I also always keep the Knitter’s Book of Finishing Techniques by Nancie Wiseman at hand. It’s a great collection of most everything you need to know about it all in one place.

  12. Sara Avatar

    I second gauge and seaming!

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