Thursday, 29 April 2010

The Skills to Pay the Bills (or not!)

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Day Four: Write about a new skill you would like to learn related to knitting or crochet.

In actual fact, I always feel with each new knitting project I complete that I am learning new skills and/or improving my existing ones. Knitting is one of those things I see as a life-long skill and one where you can always learn a new technique or a different way of doing something. This is something I love about it and with my hunger for knowledge, it certainly keeps me busy.

In terms of specific skills, there are quite a few I would like to learn or develop further.

I have suffered from the well-known, problematic Second-Sock Syndrome (SSS) when learning to knit socks, something which I would very much like to overcome. It would also mean my poor lonely sock would finally have a partner!

One lonely Baby sock
Oh yeah, and DPNs (double-pointed needles, for the uninitiated) are something I have yet to master, while we're on the subject of sock knitting. Somehow knitting on circular needles, or knitting in the round generally, seems to be beyond me. It has a lot to do with my favoured knitting style, which is on long straight needles. I like to tuck one needle under my arm when knitting and have always knitted this way, so find it more than a little tricky working with little stubby needles. I inevitably end up stabbing myself with them.

sock WIP
As I mentioned in an earlier post, I really haven't ever really gotten terribly far with crochet. Not for lack of trying - I just find it quite awkward and counter-intuitive somehow. I also found that I need to be able to see the technique being done in front of me, books just don't help. Trouble is I don't often see anyone who knows how to crochet! So far I can do a chain or, well, pick up dropped stitches in my knitting with a crochet hook! One day I will do a granny square. Maybe.

The other thing I would very much like to do in order to 'raise my game,' as it were, is to brush up on finishing techniques. I'm talking about the sewing up and weaving in of loose ends, darning and all that malarkey. I'm sure that I would benefit from properly learning mattress stitch, and for the sock-tastic stuff, I reckon the infamous Kitchener stitch would prove pretty handy too.

This was not intended to be a post on my shortcomings as a knitter, but it does seem to be turning out that way! Mind you, it's not as if anyone is an expert on absolutely every single aspect of knitting as a craft. It definitely keeps things interesting in any case.


Anonymous said...

I manage to stab myself a lot with my dpns, also with my long and straights, also with circulars, and my crochet hooks :D I think I may just be clumsy

Cat McLaughlin said...

You are not alone - I have given myself a nasty bruise with straight needles before. Ouch! I do like needles to be nice and sharp though, I find it makes the whole process of knitting so much smoother & more accurate.