Friday, June 29, 2007

Knitting Lesson

Well, I learned something about my knitting yesterday. I HAVE BEEN KNITTING WRONG FOR THE PAST THREE YEARS! I am a self taught knitter using books and the internet for instructions or when I ran into something I didn't understand. It took the monkey socks to show me that I have been knitting wrong. It took a while to understand it because my knitting looked just like anyone else's. But, I discovered that I have been knitting into the back loop all this time. I found this out when I got to the row that said ktbl and I looked it up to see what was different because I always knitted through the back loop. I discovered I was supposed to be knitting through the front of the loop. I am not quite sure what difference it makes. Does anyone know? I have been diligently trying to change my habits so I am knitting more slowly. Since I am never trying to knit quickly (unless I have a deadline) that is not a problem. It does take some more concentration. I know it will become normal to knit in the front loop eventually but I think it's weird that it took a sock pattern to show me the error of my ways.

6 comments:

ArtWalkSockYarnClub said...

Hi Donna Lee! Oh gosh, I'm glad you figured out that you were knitting incorrectly. I am also self-taught by internet and books but I had my Mom show me the basic knit stitch so I haven't been doing the back loop thing. If you were to do a row of back loop knitting and regular knitting then it may show what the difference is in the knitting. I do know back loop knitting is meant to set the stitches up a certain way for other stitches. Hopefully someone else can help too.
~Roxanne~

teabird said...

I have a friend who knits Continental, as I do, but who knits through the back loops. Her purling, though, re-twists the stitch so that her knitting is not "wrong."

You might want to check out
Annie Modesitt's site - she has written extensively about "combination knitting," which seems to be what my friend does. Annie's book talks about various knitting styles, and she is an advocate of "whatever works" as far as not twisting stitches.

Roxie said...

Different is not wrong as long as it works. If you knit through the front loop on one side, then through the back loop on the next side, it twists the stitches. There are a whole raft of twist-knit stitch patterns. Twisted stitches have less give than regular stitches, which is something to think about when you design with them.

Andrea said...

I taught myself to purl and I was doing the same thing (purling through the back loop). It made my stockinette look a bit odd, but I didn't know the difference.

InkyOrchid said...

I started out knitting through the back loop, too. It can make your gauge a little tighter, but I think it looks cool.

Carie said...

It twists your stitches. I, too, was knitting through the back loop (I learned from the stitch n' bitch book, which shows this way). After I had been knitting for about 6 weeks, I embarked upon a pretty adventurous plan--to knit a baby romper for my son to wear to my sister's wedding. I started to notice that my knitting in the round and my knitting back and forth looked MUCH different. After finishing the project (which I did just in time to dress my son in it as we were walking out the door to sis's wedding), I took it to my LYS owner to show off my work and inquire as to what must have made the texture difference. She instantly knew what it was and had me show her how I knit. Thats when I learned that I had been ktbl all this time! Imagine how silly I felt!

I did complete a few projects before figuring that out, and they have an interesting texture and the fabric is almost lacey.