Oh so continental…kitting style that it
Posted in Knitting & Crochet

Oh so continental…kitting style that it

I am a self taught knitter. I decided to learn about three years ago whilst on holiday in America and started learning from a book. I must admit I did struggle for a while and early attempts were fairly terrible. I eventually got the hang of it and am very pleased with some of the items that I have produced (if I don’t say so myself).

In terms of style I am a ‘thrower’ but only in the loosest sense of the term in that my right hand comes off the right hand needle in order to wrap the yarn around the needle. To me, this had always felt inefficient and slow. Therefore I have decided to teach myself how to knit continental style. I have no idea whether this method of knitting will turn out to be any more efficient or indeed any quicker, but I feel as though I need to give it a try!

Initially knitting continental style has felt very strange, very cack-handed indeed. A bit like playing tennis or golf left handed when you are a right handed player. I just couldn’t get my hands to work the right way around and found keeping the tension even and moving the stitches up the needle very awkward.

In order to practice this method of knitting I have decided to knit two complete projects continental style….deep breaths and lots of patience required

The first project is a knitted necklace is knitted in the round using the knit stitch only. The pattern I am using is called sev[en] circle by Kirsten Johnstone. Hopefully this should allow me to really get into the swing of things.

sev[en} circle knitted necklace

Photo from Kirsten Johnstone

The second project I am knitting is the Abalone cardigan by Beata Jezek of Hedgehog Fibres.

Abalone Cardigan by Beata Jezek

Photo from Beata Jezek

The Abalone cardigan is knitted primarily in stockinette so it will allow me to practice both the knit stitch and the purl stitch.

I am hoping that by the time that I get to the end of these two projects that I will be slick slick slick at continental stitch!

If you would like to ‘teach yourself’ to knit continental style then have a look on You Tube, there are loads of video tutorials. I used this one by Craft Sanity if you are interested….

Are you a English style or Continetnal style knitter? Or do you switch between the two methods? Are you bothered like me about how fast you knit, or are you just happy to be knitting at any pace?

Comments (2)

  • I love watching ‘speed knitters’ and did have a go myself at achieving that fluid, effortless style but decided that my slow and steady, ‘right hand off the needle to wrap the yarn’ is perfectly fine for me!

    Paula virgo
  • Good for you! I’ve been knitting just over a year and I just learned how to knit English Style. I used to just let the yarn drop between each stitch (like Paula here) – I’m not sure there’s even a name for that. Let’s just say by changing to English style my tension has loosened and I’m getting faster!
    I hope Continental becomes second nature to you by the end of these two projects.


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