Love The Way You Knit

There are many ways to knit and numerous variations on a theme. Whatever works for you works for you. Yes, of course, there are some habits to avoid, but for the most part, it's your groove, and if it works, it works.

I'm a thrower, or as some would call it, an English-style knitter. My Nan taught me to knit when I was a young lad, and that's pretty much the way I've knitted ever since. Yes, I've tried different styles of knitting, but I've always reverted back to throwing. She taught me to knit using her Aero straight needles. Proper retro. She had a very well-stocked knitting needle kit bag, and now I have my own. I like that.

She was also a big fan of DPNs, or double-pointed needles—no circulars for my Nan. "Don't be afraid of them!" she'd always tell me, and I'm super glad I picked them up. They're one of the most versatile bits of kit out there. Initially it feels like you're holding a hundred different needles at the same time, and they all want to go in every direction apart from the right one. There's also not knowing what to do with your fingers that just keep getting in the way. But, over time, you get into that groove. A lot of learning how to knit is all down to repetition, repetition, repetition and getting into your own groove.

I've adapted my style of knitting over the years, so that when I try to teach someone else how to knit, I'm using my Nan's skills plus some of my own adaptations. I guess that's why there are so many variations on a theme; you learn the skills, adapt them to work for you and pass them on for someone else to adjust the style to suit them, ad infinitum.

A loop of yarn in a loop of yarn. Sounds simple, and fundamentally it is, but what fascinates me is there are so many ways of doing it. A good friend is a thrower and knits by picking the yarn up between thumb and index finger and then moving it around the needle, whereas I use my index finger to flick it around the needle and again use my index finger to tension the yarn. Both are throwing, but variations on a theme.

Watching people knit has always fascinated me; clearly that comes from watching my Nan knitting when I was younger. That fascination is still with me today. I obviously don't just stare at someone knitting; that would be a little strange! I just casually observe their own way of knitting; I think we all do. It's rare to find two people that knit precisely the same. There's always at least one subtlety that make it their own take on knitting, and I love that difference!

There's continental knitting, English-style knitting or throwing, Norwegian purls, Russian knitting, Portuguese knitting, lever knitting, combination knitting, and Shetland Islands knitting. I've probably even missed a few.

There are so many ways of putting a loop in a loop. It's amazing, really.

Happy knitting, however you do it.

Mark