Continental purling

I am teaching myself continental knitting and I am gonna keep trying even if it kills me :slight_smile: I hate when I can’t do something. I almost got down the knit st :woot: I am having a hard time with the purling. I have been watching Amy’s videos over and over again and I still can’t seem to get the hang of it. I am working on a pattern that looks almost like a checker board and I need to k2 p2 for two rows and then p2 k2 for two rows. It’s taking forever because I am an English knitter. Is there another method of purling that is not on this website?

You’re wanting another method for purling Continental? Some people find Norwegian purling easier. I haven’t gotten the hang of it myelf.
I knit Continental and have trouble purling English.

I will try that but that looks even more difficult lol

This is the method I use for Continental purling:

There are MANY methods that you can try. Keep going and eventually you’ll find the one that’s right for you!!!

hth, knitcindy

I got it!!! :woot: :woot: :woot: I use my thumb instead of my middle or pointer finger. It’s different but it works. I now am knitting continental not that fast but I am gonna practice all day :slight_smile:

I am just glad the kids are at school. MY house is a mess but I am knitting :slight_smile: That is way more important.

I haven’t figured it out yet but some people like it. You might try the combination purl and wrap the yarn backwards. It was easier in some ways when I was first learning and the stitches are tighter. It twists the stitches so you knit in the back loop to untwist them on the next row. As you’re determined to get it, I’m sure you will. Something will work. I’ll keep trying to do purls English style. I share your frustration.

How you hold the yarn in your left hand can make a difference too. Try different ways of doing it.

:cheering: :cheering: :cheering:


I actually saw a video of someone purling continental that way and am thinking about trying it. I use the Norwegian purl. I learned it when I learned continental and it is easier for me to not have to move the yarn forward, or my finger for that matter.

Great job on getting it!!! Congrats:woohoo:

I was trying the Norwegian purl I have been going back and forth and I kind of almost got the hang of it. It works the best when your doing ribbing. I did a row of k2 p2. I figure I would make a dish cloth so that it won’t matter what stitches I use.

It’s definitely great for ribbing and moss stitch and the like. I used it for a few row of just purling and figured there was probably a better way, I just didn’t think of one at the time. A dishcloth is a great thing to make while teaching yourself something new.

This is how I Continental Purl:

The stitches do twist, but this is how I learned and you know how they say “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” :aww:

I was taught Continental knitting when I was a young girl by a gal who learned it from her German grandmother. Most Continental knitters use their left index finger. The girl taught me to use my middle finger. It took me a long time to figure out I had been doing it “wrong” all these years. I still use my middle finger. I find I can tension the yarn with my middle finger then lift the yarn up and to the front of the needle easily with my index finger. It makes switching back and forth between knit and purl easy.

this is the video that made the most sense to me,

never knew there were so many different ways to knit

I just can’t get a good tension with the yarn if I use either my index finger or my middle finger so I have been using my thumb :slight_smile:

Continental knitting demo

She explains why she holds the yarn as she does. When I finally got the hang of holding the yarn this way my tension improved, my purls were more even, and my gauge from flat to circular was much closer. It takes a while to get to the purling but it’s worth watching IMHO.

Yeah I tried holding the yarn that way and I still can’t get good tension. I just have to keep practicing.

I hear you! I still can’t purl English. My English knits are fine, the purls suck. :shrug:


We will get it eventually we have to just keep trying :slight_smile:

Just to overwhelm you some more…I just came across this, it’s looks really weird, but hey! if it works for her then it just might work for someone else.

That’s a lot like how I do it. Someone gave me a hint about holding the yarn way back on my index finger, and that works too, but it’s such an ingrained habit to use my thumb.