Knitting Techniques

There are quite a few different knitting techniques that you can apply to your knitting depending on your level of experience and the effect you are trying to achieve.

Garter StitchIf you are a beginner, I suggest that once you have mastered the basic knitting stitches and have learned how to cast on and cast off your knitting, that you start with one of the basic techniques.

But don't worry, when you have gained some experience with stocking stitch or garter stitch, there are many more interesting techniques that you can have a go at.

For example, would you like to know more about:

  • Aran Knitting
      • Contary to popular belief Aran knitting is not a knitting style that is centuries old, but was in fact created in the early 1900s in the Aran Isles.

        Although the various patterns and cables usually incorporated into an aran jumper do not have any historical or symbolic meaning, aran knitting is a beautiful and unique style of knitting that is popular all over the world.

  • Continental Knitting
      • There are two main methods of knitting, the one used on this site is generally called the English method. The other is the Continential Method of knitting.

        The central difference between the two methods is which hand holds or controls the yarn. In English knitting, the yarn is held or controlled with the right hand and the yarn is flicked or 'thrown' over the left hand needle to form the new stitch.

        Continental knitters hold the yarn in their left hand, and simply scoop or pick up the yarn with the right needle. Although until now, I have never used this method myself, it seems to be a much faster method of knitting.

  • Fair Isle Knitting
      • Fair Isle is a traditional knitting technique used to create patterns with multiple colours.

        All of the knitting is plain knitting (stocking stitch) but two or more colors are used to create a pattern in the knitting. Fair Isle Knitting was developed in the Shetland Islands (where my family originally came from a couple of generations ago!)

  • Intarsia Knitting
  • Simple Lace Knitting
      • Lace knitting is a style of knitting characterized by stable "holes" in the fabric arranged to create a pattern.

        Lacy knitting is considered easier than true lace knitting as you only need to do pattern stitches on the right-side or knit row of the work.

        Although eaiser to do that some of the other knitting styles, lacy knitting can be very effective and is often used for garments made for women and children.

  • True Lace Knitting
      • Lace knitting is generally not as fine as other forms of lace. But it is better suited for garments and baby shawls as it is softer and much faster to produce.

        True knitted lace will have pattern stitches on both sides of the work (both the knit and purl rows) and are fairly complex. Most knitted lace is knitted using a very fine wool, usually one or two ply.

        Definitely not suitable for a beginner!

  • Mitered Knitting
  • Modular Knitting
  • Shadow or Illusion Knitting
  • Textured Knitting or
  • Two Color Knitting

And Then There is Loom Knitting!

Loom knitting is just that - using a loom or a frame to create knitted fabric instead of using knitting needles. Looms tend to be either round or rectangular and consist of a frame with upright pegs. Each peg holds a stitch, to create new rows of knitting the yarn is wrapped around or across the pegs and the existing stitch is hooked and looped over the yarn to form a new stitch.

Loom knitting is gaining in popularity as it is a quick and easy form of knitting. Although many people tend to think loom knitting is limited to stocking stitch, with a bit of imagination and experimentation you can use a knitting loom or frame to do any of the traditional knitting styles.

The knitting instructions on this site for your loom so far include:

If you are really adventurous you can even make your own knitting loom!

How about some techniques you can teach your kids?

      French knitting is a style of knitting for kids that most women of my generation fooled around with as kids at school. To do french knitting you need a french knitting tool.

Last One - Machine Knitting!

Although many knitting purists think of it as cheating - machine knitting is another option. I much prefer hand knitting, but to be honest I actually have two knitting machines set up and ready to use!

One is a bulky knitter that I use for 8 plys and the other one I use for finer yarns.

Machine knitting is much faster than hand knitting and as with loom knitting, with a bit of imagination and experimentation, you can do virtually any knitting stitch on the machine that you can do by hand.

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