I have been crocheting for many years; but I’ve only learned to knit in the last few.
I’m beginning to get arthritis in my hands and knitting with two straight needles is pretty painful. I discovered circular needles and that was better – but still a bit painful.
Part of the problem is that I have some needle insecurity issues going on. I’m afraid that my knitting will slip off the needles and I will lose my work. In my experience, this is a valid concern, as it has happened to me several times. In order to compensate for this insecurity, I keep a death grip on the needles. This causes me pain and makes knitting a not-so-fun-and-relaxing experience.
Also, I have always found executing knit stitches and purl stitches on needles to be awkward and un-intuitive. I blame this on the fact that I’ve been crocheting for a long time.
A couple of years ago, I discovered knooking. This is actual knitting, but using one modified crochet hook rather than two needles. This is better for me, as the tool is familiar and it doesn’t cause me near as much pain. I’m not forcing my aging joints to learn new motions.
Unfortunately, when I was first learning to knook (using YouTube videos) the experience was still quite awkward. Forming the stitches took a lot of effort and it was very challenging. As a result, I ended up putting the knook away and just resigned myself to no more knitting.
I did acquire a couple of knitting machines and those are great, but not quite the same as working by hand.
Recently, I decided to give knooking another try. I found a Leisure Arts video on YouTube: click here for video. Evidently, this was a different method of making the stitches and (happily!) I have found it to be much easier than my earlier efforts. This method is called “western” and it is more akin to crochet and most crocheters find this to be the easiest method for them to learn.
Because I bounce back and forth between knooking and crochet, I found that I was forgetting how to form the knit and purl stitches; so I made myself a mini tutorial that I can refer to whenever I need a refresher.
Knooking for right-handed folks:
Getting started: cast on (crochet chain) desired number of stitches, then pick up stitches (working right to left, pull loop through each chain stitch, leaving each loop on the hook). Slide stitches off of hook and onto cord. Turn your work so that the hook is on the right and you’re working right to left, just like in crochet.
Yarn held in back.
Insert hook from left to right.
With hook above working yarn, grasp yarn and pull through stitch.
Yarn held in front.
Insert hook from right to left.
Wrap yarn over top of hook, grasp and pull through.
After all stitches have been worked, slide stitches off hook and onto the cord. Turn your work and continue as per pattern.
Knit the first stitch (one loop on hook).
*Insert hook into next stitch (now there are two loops on hook), wrap yarn around hook and pull through both loops on hook (back to only one loop on hook).* This feels like a single crochet, but it is actually just doing a slip stitch two together.
Continue * to * until all stitches have been done.
Cut yarn, weave in ends.
I hope this helps all of you who are interested in learning. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or need clarification on any of my instructions.