Last summer, because my sewing addiction was driving Mr WembleyWonderful completely crazy, I began knitting – and I absolutely loved it! Contrary to sewing,which I practise as a psychopath, buying compulsively fabric and then sewing frantically late into the night to finish a project (talk to any sewer and we’re all very similar), knitting is the most relaxing activity ever. It takes so long to complete a project that there is no point rushing. The repetitive movement of the needles is strangely soothing. And it is very sociable: you can sit with family and friends and interact with them while knitting, which is completely impossible while sewing.
If I haven’t convinced you, a recently published book will– it is called “La Tricothérapie” by Peace and the Wool (of all names!) and it talks about all the merits of knitting – being already convinced I must admit I haven’t read it, I am far too busy with my other hugely morale-boosting reads about life and death, no comment…
So if I’ve convinced you that Tricotherapy is all you need, here are a few pieces of advice to kick-start your knitting:
- Find an easy thing to make… but not a scarf , which is the most boring project ever!!! My beloved beginner project was the Trendy Chale, knitted by thousands of tricoteuses - I think I’ve knitted nearly ten of them myself and I actually do use them. It is a very easy project to start with and this link should help you getting started. You can get the instructions here (sadly not free anymore)– but also loads of stuff on youtube.
- Get some reasonably-priced, good quality wool. Given my still limited trust in my abilities, I am a huge fan of the Drops brand, which you can buy online here (and it arrives in lovely packaging too!). I particularly like Drops Alpaga and Drops Brushed Aplaga Silk, which I find wonderfully soft (and which you can actually combine).
- Buy some needles . After buying very cheap needles which made my life a nightmare, I eventually purchased this HiyaHiya kit (which was actually half the price then, not sure Amazon is the cheapest source) and I haven’t looked back ever since!
- Decide which knitting method you would like to use . This blog post introduced me to the continental method, which is very rarely used in France, and it changed my life! – not more back pain and it goes so much faster!
And if you want to read more about starting knitting, Lise Tailor is a very active knitting/sewing blogger and this article is immensely useful.
So… Happy knitting! And if you would like to react to this article you are welcome to do so here.