Tips, Yarn

Your tips for new knitters

Autumn is a time when lots of people take up knitting for the first time or return to it after a long time. We want to encourage these new knitters so they can really enjoy their knitting and crochet, so we asked our followers on Twitter what advice they would give a new knitter.

Please share these with any new knitters you come across in knitting groups and at yarn shops – and add more tips in the comments below.

Getting started – choosing your yarn, needles and pattern

  • Start with something that is not too complicated. Ask advice when you get stuck and, lastly, keep practising. Patricia Haskell, @PatriciaHaskell
  • Knit with wool – it’s much more forgiving than any other fibre. Thesnailofhappiness, @thesnailofhappy
  • Practice with lighter colours of yarn especially if new to cables as it helps you see the stitches more clearly. Nicola Kerr, @HandKnics
  • If you’re on a low budget, use cheaper wool for children’s garments. They grow out of them so quickly anyway. Wendy Jones, @WendyJeanJones
  • Don’t learn with cotton yarn which has no give & can split – choose a well spun DK preferably wool with stretch & forgiveness. Woman on the edge, @karenandmimi
  • Some yarns knit better on different sort of needles – I switched from wood to steel for a merino/silk/yak yarn. Woman on the edge, @karenandmimi
  • Use the best yarn and needles you can afford. It makes all the difference. Isla, @BritYarn
  • Use really great yarn, get some circular needles and knit a cowl. Much more fun than the ubiquitous scarf. LouiseTilbrook, @Madmumknits
  • Only buy yarn when you are ready to start a new project, because buying yarn that ‘speaks to you’ is a very dangerous path to follow. Jackie P, @beshabar
  • Don’t be put off by something you think is above your skill level. Go for it! When you get stuck, google it, you’ll learn quickly. Lynsey Gray, @knittingsquids
learning to knit
Keep persevering and don’t be afraid to ask for advice

Keeping track

  • Note your numbers of rows so you will always know where you are up to with your pattern. Knitique, @KnitiqueLimited
  • Use stitch markers to show where pattern repeats start and stop Juliet, UKHKA
  • Take notes. Helpful for when you learn new techniques, make mistakes or want to make the same project again later. Fredi Smith, @FrediSmith

Don’t give up

  • Keep persevering and pop into your local yarns shop  for help and  assistance Martyn, @welsh_tenor
  • Hold the needles however works for you – there’s different techniques, as long as you are getting good tension your own way is fine. Handmade by Anne, @handmadebyanne
  • Enjoy….never letting it be a chore. Also my philosophy is that if it doesn’t look like the pattern it’s your interpretation – art! jennifer hanlon, @jenshanlon
  • Every mistake can be fixed (even dropped stitches!) so don’t worry about not being perfect. Karie Westermann, @kariebookish
  • Be patient. Learn how to become a good knitter first instead of a fast one. The speed will come! Dee, @littleredyarn
  • You’ll find a lot of the mistakes you make are also techniques you’ll end up using down the line (slip stitches, yarn overs, etc). Lynsey Gray, @knittingsquids
  • Don’t be sorry to rip out your work – long term knitters do it more than they’d like! It’s part of the process, not a failure. EdinYarnFest, @EdinYarnFest
  • Set a challenge & go for it! Don’t give up, there are plenty of people to help you! Don’t be afraid to undo mistakes. Martyn, @welsh_tenor
  • Hold the needles however works for you – there’s different techniques, as long as you are getting good tension your own way is fine. Handmade by Anne, @handmadebyanne
learning to knit
Experiment to find what needles, yarns and ways of knitting work best for you

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