Friday, January 3, 2014

So You Want to Learn to Knit?

Once upon a time…

Okay, it was a couple weeks ago.

One knitter said to another, "I only know how to make scarves and I want to do more." The other knitter replied, "No problem, if you can cast on, knit, purl and bind off, you can make anything you want." And thus a knitting class was born.

That seems a little too easy. It also involved rounding up several other wanna-be knitters and the materials and the pattern and the space.

Where? Panera. Easy. Good food and a private room where we won't bother anyone.

Look at all these awesome colors
new knitters ordered from Fiber Wild!
Who? A ragtag group of old and new friends. And everyone, super nice.

What? I placed a call to Fiber Wild, a yarn store I've shopped with before online. I spoke with a clerk, maybe Nicky or Natalie or Jennifer (I can't remember), and explained the situation: short notice and need yarn and needles for eight. She assured me I could place an order online and it would arrive in time. I put out an email to all the new knitters asking for color choices and placed the order. Another call to Fiber Wild to confirm they received the order and spoke to Nicky or Natalie or Jennifer again. They even refunded part of the cost of the extra fast shipping! And the yarn showed up in plenty of time!
We used HiKoo SimpliWorsted, a wool blend yarn, and my Daily Gazette fingerless wrist warmers with thumb hole pattern. It's not the most elegant way to knit wrist warmers or fingerless mitts but it is a great way to learn to knit.

The biggest problem with most first-knitting projects is people generally go for scarves. Scarves are long. Big projects. Long big projects. Big long projects that feel like they are never-ending. It can take forever to finish if you just started knitting. The wrist warmers are only 30 stitches wide and 24 ridges (48 rows) so it's a totally doable and fast project.

Knitting Class!
I also love these wrist warmers as first projects because you get all of the basics in one pattern: knitted cast on, garter stitch (knit all the time - lots of practice!), and binding off. You ever get a little bit of extra fun because the thumb hole involves binding off in the row and then casting back on.

It's exciting!

What was your first knitting project? Or, if you're reading this for my sparking wit, what will be your first knitting project?

*ps: I'm not affiliated with Fiber Wild; they're just a really great store with a website and I had a great experience.