Monday, August 6, 2012

And I thought I was SO clever...

Maria's Mitts

I've been hearing over and over again about how much faster knitting is for those who use Continental Style. But it never really interested me. I mean, I've been perfectly happy with my usual pace and technique up until now - so why change, right?

Besides - I've been knitting for over 30 years now - so I wondered if it would even be possible to change my technique at this point...

I kind of have my own little style going on when I knit. People love to tell me how STRANGE and UNUSUAL it is - which used to really bother me - but now I just don't care! Anyway, I tuck my right needle under my arm while I work.

Some people tell me it's a SCOTTISH style...

Some call it PIT KNITTING...

And others just call it weird!

It's not the way I was taught to knit, it's just a comfortable style I fell into as I learned.

So.

My main problem with PIT knitting, is that it doesn't work when you use circular needles or double pointed needles. You can't tuck a needle under your arm pit when it is only 10 cm long (4 inches). So I usually avoid working anything in the round.

Because if I can't tuck, then I SLOW down so much!

But then I was thinking...

If I could learn this Continental Style that everyone keeps talking about, then I could work quickly in the round - SO I DID IT! With the help of some You Tube videos, I taught myself to knit Continental Style. This is the one I found most helpful.

It was a bit tricky at first - since it involves holding your working yarn in the left hand instead of the right - but I got there in the end.

And I practiced, and practiced and practiced until my tension was even...

Then decided it was time to test it out on a project!

I thought I was SO CLEVER.

With my wonderful, even, beautiful tension...

(Which was hard, because it tends to be quite loose when you work Continental)

But I have a problem.

Look at these Mitts:

Maria's Mitts

They're SUPPOSED to be the same size!

I've used the same yarn, same needles, followed the same pattern and worked the same number of rows... But they do NOT match up...

Strange things are afoot at the Circle K...



4 comments:

Christina said...

Yikes! I've been meaning to give Continental a whirl too - only use it now for fair isle... Other than the "slight" size difference, your mitts look great :)

winkieflash said...

I can't believe the difference between those two... You're probably right, but is the row count identical? What a shame... I had no idea tension could make this much of a difference!
But, good on ya for learning how to knit Continental style ;)
xo,
wink

laughing purple goldfish said...

Christina... thanks... I'm looking forward to that stage where you work a whole row and realise you did it without even thinking about it!

Winkieflash... I know, right??? I was SO SURE that I had stuffed up on the row count... so I checked... and checked... and checked... then one more time just to make sure! 22 rows of stockingette. Both exactly the same number of rows... Which kind of makes sense I suppose, that if you are going to use MORE yarn for each stitch, then most of that yarn will be absorbed into the HEIGHT of the stitch. I just wasn't expecting such dramatic differences...

Asa-Marie said...

So I wonder if you make another glove now you will naturally make it the same tension as the second one?...