Do you want to learn to knit but don’t know how? Are you a little lost between the choice of wool, needles, patterns? Heard about the sample but don’t know if it’s important? Knitting in the round makes you want to go, but again you don’t know how to go about it?
We will see all of this together in several tutorials!
This series will therefore be divided into several articles:
- This article will be about how to start knitting and how to choose your material.
but you will also find
- How to make a swatch
- How to read a knitting pattern
- How to choose your size
- How to knit in the round with circular needles
- How to knit in a magic loop
- How to block your knitting
- Choose your project
This is a huge question isn’t it! The important thing is that you challenge yourself with something that is achievable. Some people will prefer to start easy by learning how to knit a scarf or a snood, while others will prefer to start right away by learning to knit a sweater or a cardigan.
I consider myself to be in the second category because I need a project that will motivate me, and the same goes for sewing. I know that I will really want to finish a garment as I will want to wear it, while a scarf I would quickly tend to leave it aside … because yes, a scarf is long and a bit boring!
* If you prefer to start with accessories, I can advise you:
– The Trendy Shawl which is a free pattern from Mlle Sophie, which will allow you to learn knit stitches and increases. It is available in French and English.
* If what interests you is to learn to knit children’s patterns in order to spoil the babies to come in your entourage (or yours), I recommend these knitting patterns accessible to beginners:
– The Cozy sweater: It’s a sweater that is worked in the round top-down, with raglan sleeves. You will need to cast on stitches, knit and purl stitches, increase, decrease, put stitches on hold, pick up stitches, cast off stitches and, if desired, make pockets. But these are optional. It is available in size 3 months to 10 years.
– The Rosa cardigan: one of our bestsellers for children! It’s an adorable little girl’s cardigan, which is knitted in the round, top-down, with a beautiful lace which is very accessible. You will need to cast on stitches, knit and purl stitches, make increases in the form of yarn overs, decrease, put stitches on hold, pick up stitches, cast off stitches. It is available in size 3 months to 12 years.
* If what interests you is learning to knit women’s patterns, here is also a series of very accessible patterns:
– Trescao jumper: it’s our free pattern for women, which is very accessible for beginners. This is a jumper that is worked in the round, top-down, with raglan sleeves, and the increases of which are made by yarn overs. The finishes are in garter stitch, but the body and sleeves are in stockinette stitch. It is slightly longer at the back than at the front. The length is intended to be crop but it can be lengthened very easily. It is available from size 80 cm to 158 cm bust circumference. You will have to cast on stitches, knit and purl stitches, make increases in the form of yarn overs, decrease, make short rows, put stitches on hold, pick up stitches, cast off stitches.
– Trescao cardigan: is the cardigan version of the jumper. It has the same finishes and the same construction as the jumper of the same name, but it also has a button band.
– Erell sweater: is our bestseller. This is a bottom-up sweater that has a drop-shoulders construction, which is one of the most accessible. It also has a very beautiful stitch on the body. Its shape is “boxy” with fitted sleeves. You will need to cast on stitches, knit and purl stitches, increase, decrease, do short rows, put stitches on hold, pick up stitches, cast off stitches.
– Finally, Suzie sweater has been created especially for beginners, with detailed instructions. You will need to cast on stitches, knit and purl stitches, increase, decrease, put stitches on hold, pick up stitches, cast off stitches.
These patterns will allow you to familiarize yourself with knitting in the round! Discover all of our knitting patterns accessible to beginners in the “beginners pattern” menu of the shop.
Now that you have chosen the pattern, you have to choose the material!
Choose your yarn and needles
It is important to know that you do not choose a yarn randomly when you decide to knit a project. It is very important to look at the recommended yarn and swatch in your pattern, and find a yarn that matches (either the same or another of the same type). Indeed, there are several types of yarn with different gauge and they are classified this way:
– Lace (2ply): gauge per 10 cm of 33-40 stitches with needles 1.5 to 2.25m
– Fingering (4ply): gauge per 10 cm of 27-32 stitches with needles 2 – 3.25 mm
– Sport (5ply): gauge per cm of 23-26 stitches on needles 3.5 – 4 mm
– DK (8ply): gauge per 10 cm of 21-24 stitches on needles 4 – 4.5 mm
– Worsted / Aran (10ply): gauge per 10 cm of 20-18 stitches with 4.5 – 5mm needles
– Bulky (12ply): gauge per 10 cm of 12 -15 stitches with needles 7 – 10 mm
– Chunky: gauge per 10 cm of 17-11 stitches with needles 10 – 15 mm
– Roving (Giant): gauge per 10 cm of 6 stitches at least with needles 20 – 25 mm
Let’s take a look at these two balls of yarn from Drops, for example: Alpaca and Lima.
As you can see on the label, it is usually written the size of needles that is recommended, the gauge of the yarn (21 stitches x 28 rows for 10cm for the Lima), but also the yarn yardage, and finally the composition of the wool. On the right you can also see the color (5820 for the Lima) and the bath (184664). It is important that all your balls come from the same bath, to avoid color differences. If this is not the case, alternate the balls to avoid demarcations.
If your pattern recommends knitting with DK yarn and a gauge of 22 stitches on 4mm needles (which is often the case for baby projects for example), you must then compare with the gauge written on the label of your yarn. Then, if it more or less similar, you will have to swatch.
Tip: for those of you who are registered on the Ravelry, I recommend looking at the ‘yarn ideas’ tab on the pattern page that you like. You will be able to see the yarns that have been used by other people, and the rendering on their project. It helps me tremendously if I don’t want to use the same yarn as the designer, or have my head scouring the internet for yarns that might match. I often look at ideas and use them to choose my yarn.