Complete beginner in tears of frustration

Okay, I am a COMPLETE beginner. I only learned how to cast on last night. Picked my needles back up this morning to begin learning the knit stitch, and have been greeted with two hours of failure, confusion, and frustration. I am hoping one of you wonderful people might be able to figure out what it is I am doing wrong.

I am attempting to learn to Continental knit due to being ambidextrous, and an avid crocheter, it feels more natural to hold my yarn in my left hand as I do for crocheting. I am using the Double Cast On (Long Tail Cast On?) that I learned from the video on this site. Once I have completed my cast on (which I’ve had to redo repeatedly this morning because of the problems with my knit stitch) I begin doing the knit stitch as shown in the video here on Continental Knit Stitch. This is where the problem begins. Once I move the stitch off the left hand needle and onto the right, I find that I don’t have a stitch, I find that I have yarn with two twists in it and wrapped around my needle. Knowing from crocheting that often if you keep going things will work themselves out. So I continue for a few more stitches, and still no stitch appears. I’m going in through the front, sliding my needle to the back, “hooking” the yarn on the tip of my needle, bringing it back to the front, and then taking the loop I went into off of the hook. Does anyone have any experience with issues such as this? Can any of you help me figure out what it is I’m doing wrong?

Thanks in Advance for any assistance, and thank you for your patience with my rant/vent of frustration.


I wish I could see what is happening. :ick: It sounds frustrating all right. From what you say it sounds like you are doing it right. I just tried something that produced your effect. Are you sure you are going into the stitch loop itself that is on the left needle? I tried knitting between the stitch loops and it did what you say.

You insert your right hand needle (RHN) into the first loop on the left hand needle (LHN) going into the loop on the LHN from the left of it moving toward the tip of the LHN. Using the skein yarn, draw up a loop and pull it to the front, then take the first loop off the LHN.

I knit Continental too. As long as you are going into the loop on the LHN and drawing up a new stitch loop onto the RHN you should at least be making stitches. They could be backwards or something if you made other mistakes, but you should have a stitch. :slight_smile:

It sounds like you’re doing the knit st correctly. (It’s really like reaching through the loop with a crochet hook and scooping up the yarn.) I wonder if the problem is in the cast on. Re-check the video for long tail cast on or try the one for the knitted cast on. The knitted cast on is a version of the knit st so you’ll be practicing the knit st at the same time as you cast on.

I think the problem is that in crochet you’re doing a push and pull motion to scoop up the yarn with the hook. This is what you’re used to. In knitting you have that push pull motion but you will also rotate the needle a bit to scoop up the yarn. This is probably why you’re coming up empty with no stitch. If draping the yarn over your index finger is clumsy, you might want to try draping it around your middle finger instead. I learned how to knit when I was a child from a babysitter. Her grandmother who was German taught her this way. I never knew until just recently that technically this is “wrong” when it comes to Continental knitting. It just comes naturally to me because I’ve always done it this way. Draping it over the middle finger may be easier. Check out knitting videos on Youtube. Sometimes you can’t understand instruction videos from one teacher but it clicks with another.

:cheering: :woot: I finally got my knit stitch to work properly, (sloppy but right) though I still have no clue what it was that I was doing wrong. :woohoo:

Fantastic. Enjoy knitting and many successful future projects.
What a happy 4th!

Okay, I’m not in tears of frustration this time, but right now I’m seeing things about as clearly as looking through a blindfold. Okay, I’ve frogged this 8 stitch wide bookmark at least a dozen times because something’s fishy in Denmark. I’m Double casting on 8 stitches, but then when I go back to knit stitch the first row, my first cast on has two vertical threads. Do I treat both of those as one cast on since they were both put on in the same cast on, or do I treat them as two separate stitches?

No. Your first stitch should not have two legs. It should only have one. You are most likely pulling the yarn up from the side of the needle closest to you. You want the yarn to come from the needle, down between you and the needle, and then up the side of the needle away from you and to your finger. God it’s so hard to explain this in print without showing someone. If you are pulling the yarn straight up from the needle to your finger without going around the bottom and up the back you are pulling that stitch so that its legs are showing.

THis is an extremely common beginner mistake and you’ll end up with an extra stitch if you do it the way you are doing.

Okay I just re-watched Amy’s Video on the cast on I’m using. In the video if you look closely under her right thumb as she finishes the first cast on, there are two uprights. So THAT much is apparently correct. The other question remains, do I treat the two uprights as one stitch or two?

(I apologize if “upright” isn’t the proper name for that portion of a stitch, it’s what it’d be called in crochet.)

trvvn5, thank you for your help and I’m sorry for the confusion and not having linked the video in my earlier post to make the question clearer.

Oh ok. Sorry. Yes. Those are considered two seperate stitches.

You will have a loop or slipknot on your needle to start any caston and that’s considered a stitch too. So if you need to CO 20, you have the beginning loop, then cast on 19 more. When you work the first row, knit or purl into all 20 loops.

Amy starts her long tail with a loop over the needle and that counts as a stitch. At any rate, if you need 8sts on the needle, start with a loop or a slip knot and stop when there are 8sts or strands over the needle. (And as trvvn5 suggests, be careful not to pull up on the first st in the next row. Count your sts to check on whether that first st is one or two if you want to be sure.)

Thank you all.