Sunday, April 5, 2009

my first knitting project

While I was attending the Women of Faith conference last weekend, I was inspired in more ways than one. One of my travel companions was knitting a shawl. I sat next to her for several hours in the back seat, watching her knit. I taught myself to crochet in college, but knitting has always eluded me. After watching her, I decided I'd give it another shot. I had a pair of knitting needles and lots of yarn from crochet projects. I even had a book called "I can't believe I'm KNITTING!"

Here is the result of my first recent attempt:

I was pleasantly surprised at the result. To give you an idea of the size, those needles are 10 inches long. The whole thing is about 15 inches in length. (I knitted until my ball of yarn ran out.) Mainly, I was just trying to figure out if I could do the stitches. I think casting on is the hardest part. That's the first step, where you get the yarn "loaded up" onto one needle. In crocheting, the beginning chain is just about the easiest part.

Below, you can see the 2 basic types of stitches. The left, center and right sections are done in what's called garter stitch. You do the same stitch on the right side and the wrong side and it looks the same on both sides. The 2 sections that look like little v's or zigzags are the classic knit stitch, which is called stockinette stitch. It's created by doing a knit stitch row followed by a purl stitch row. There are more complex things like ribbing and cables, but I'll leave them for a later attempt.

In the meantime, I think I'll use this piece to cover the table under the front edge of my laptop. The table is always cold, and this makes a nice warm place to rest my arms. My next project is a shawl like my friend was making. It uses lots more yarn (3 or 4 skeins) and bigger needles. I'll let you know how it turns out.