Reasons a non-knitter should NOT take up knitting

10 Reasons to NOT become a knitter

  1. Learning something new freaks you out.
  2. You really don’t want to demystify the magical process known as knitting.
  3. Making things is too much work. You’d rather buy.
  4. You can’t do two things at the same time. (e.g. Walking and chewing gum at the same time.)
  5. Pointy things scare you.
  6. You have a severe fear of strings.
  7. Worse yet…knots in strings trigger panic attacks.
  8. You hate abbreviations. {You won’t text or tweet either.}
  9. You’re allergic to all but cheap acrylic yarn.
  10. You love housework and can’t imagine anything better to do with your free time.

Okay. I’m just playing around here–just so you don’t think this is a serious list!  Because even if you love doing dishes and piles of dirty laundry make you smile, you can still be a knitter. {At least, I’m pretty sure you can.} But don’t just take my word for it. Go ahead. Give it a try!

I’d like you to share one thing that has held you back in regards to learning to knit. Was there no one available to teach you? Was it an intimidating new technique you were afraid to try? And if you’ve gotten past what was holding you back, be sure to share how!  Just leave a comment below. Thanks!

Happy knitting!

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Early Morning Mitts Tutorial: The Bind Off

Tutorial Recap

In case you’ve missed any of my previous posts in this tutorial series, here’s a list of links to those posts in order.

  1. Cast-on
  2. Cuff
  3. Thumb gusset

Bind off

Now that we’ve finished the main part of the mitt, it’s time to bind off. Like the initial join for knitting in the round, the bind off for my design is worked using purl stitches instead of knit stitches. So how exactly do you bind off in purl?  If you already know how to bind off knit stitches, you’ll find it’s not that difficult.

First you’ll need to purl those first two stitches.

knitting Tutorial

Next, in order to bind off one stitch, you will put your working yarn to the back as if you’re going to knit. Then pull the first purled stitch up and over the second stitch and off the right needle with the left needle.

knitting tutorial

knitting tutorial

Again, bring the working yarn back to the front. Purl the next stitch.  With your yarn behind once again, move the second purled stitch over the third and off the needle. Continue around the top of the mitt purling one stitch and then, with yarn behind, binding off a stitch until you have only one stitch left on your right needle.

Finally, cut the working yarn leaving about a six-inch tail and pull the yarn through the last stitch.

Note:  You could also bind off in purl without switching the yarn back and forth, but I’ve found it’s much harder to pull one stitch over the other when you’re working from behind the needle.

 QUESTIONS? Comments?

Having trouble understanding something in today’s tutorial?  Leave a comment below with your question and I’ll answer it in a future post!

Coming up next…finishing the thumb.

Next is our final step: knitting the thumb and finishing up. And if all goes according to plan, I’ll have my first FREE pattern ready for you to download as well!  Sign up for email updates, follow my blog on Bloglovin’, and/or like my Facebook page so you don’t miss it! 😀

As always, happy knitting!

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Yarn Along: Almondine Socks

~ Two of my favorite things are knitting and reading, and the evidence of this often shows up in my photographs.  I love seeing what other people are knitting and reading as well. So, what are you knitting or crocheting right now? What are you reading? Take a photo and share it either on your blog or on Flickr. Leave a link below to share your photo with the rest of us! ~ Ginny at Small Things

Knitting Update: Almondine Socks

Somehow in the past couple weeks, I’ve found a bit of time here and there–in between knitting and writing up my tutorials for my Early Morning Mitts–to work on the Almondine socks too.  I’ve now completed the leg, heel flap, heel turn and am nearly finished with the gusset. I always feel like once I get past the heel turn and gusset I am almost done. That’s usually when I don’t want to stop working on them until they’re finished and I can wear them!

Knitting and reading

Reading Recommendations

A lot of the books I’m reading now are for our homeschool. But if I have a little time to read for fun, I will read a page or two of The Mysterious Benedict Society and the Perilous Journey.  I’m still enjoying the story. Albeit, slowly.

My hubby and I both love books.  So a few years ago when I was crocheting baby blankets like a crazy woman, we figured out a relatively easy way that we could enjoy reading some books together.  So we find a book that we think we’d both enjoy and my hubby reads it out loud to me while I knit or crochet.  Somehow this summer got so busy that we’d stopped.  But I recently found a new book for us to try and once again he has started reading to me. I just love it!  We don’t have time every evening, but when we do he will usually read a chapter or two.  The book we’re reading now is On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness to me. It’s hilarious!  Thanks to whichever blogger that was reading it a few weeks ago and recommended this book in her WIP Wednesday post. Of course, I can’t remember who (I really need to start writing stuff down more!) so I can’t even link back to her post.

Well, today’s post is short. I hope you’ve found it sweet as well!

I’ll be linking up with Ginny at Small Things today.  Be sure to stop by her blog and check out the other blogs that have linked up.

Happy knitting and reading too!

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Early Morning Mitts Tutorial: Thumb Gusset

So what exactly is a thumb gusset?

So far, I’ve shown you some of the techniques used in knitting the cast-on and the cuff of my Early Morning Mitts pattern. Now it’s time to talk about the thumb gusset.  First off, according to Merriam-Webster online dictionary, the term gusset means “a usually diamond-shaped or triangular insert in a seam (as of a sleeve, pocketbook, or shoe upper) to provide expansion or reinforcement”. So what does that mean for a mitten or glove? Well, take a look at this photo.

knitting tutorial

See the highlighted triangular shape?  The stitches between the stitch markers are the thumb stitches. Starting with just 2 stitches between the markers, I increase two thumb stitches every other row. These are paired increases because you make one at each “end” of the thumb stitch section and the stitches also lean in opposite directions.  The paired increases I use are Make 1 Right (M1R) and Make 1 Left (M1L). You can watch videos to learn how to do M1R & M1L at knittinghelp.com.

Early Morning MittsSo looking at the finished mitts, you see the thumbs are shaped out away from the palm of the mitt. It’s a little trickier to knit than an after-thought thumb, but having a gusset allows the mitt to fit the shape of the hand and thumb better.

Thumb gusset how-to

Once the cuff–up to the wrist–is completed, it’s time to start the thumb gusset while continuing to knit the palm section of the mitt.

My pattern’s instructions begin like this:

Round 1: Knit 1, place marker, M1R, Knit 2, M1L, place marker, knit to end of round.  You now have 4 stitches between the stitch markers.

Round 2: Knit

Round 3: Knit 1, slip marker, M1R, Knit 4, M1L, slip marker, knit to end of round.  You see there are now 6 stitches between the markers…each increase round adds 2 stitches to the thumb.

This pattern of increasing thumb stitches one row, knit one row, continues until we have the total number of stitches needed for thumb. Then the thumb stitches are slipped to a stitch holder (I just slip the stitches to a piece of yarn with a tapestry needle).

knitting tutorialOnce you slip the thumb stitches to scrap yarn or a stitch holder, you need to cast on 2 stitches to make up for the 2 that you used to start the thumb gusset. Then it’s just knitting around until the palm is as high up on the hand/fingers as you like. For this pattern, I’m wanting to mostly cover my fingers–these gloves are especially nice for driving because they keep the fingers and palms so toasty warm, but the finger tips are still free which is nice for setting temperature or radio controls.

At the top of the mitt, I do another garter stitch ridge just like the ones on the cuff and now it’s time to bind off!

QUESTIONS? Comments?

Having trouble understanding something in today’s tutorial?  Leave a comment below with your question and I’ll answer it in a future post!

Coming up next…binding off the top of the mitt.

You need to know the special way to bind off the mitt and then it will be on to knitting the thumb!

As always, happy knitting!

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