Contintal purl - What is this madness?

I am an English Knitter or maybe more correctly American knitter, but I am always up for new things and I have been trying to learn Continental Knitting. However… I can knit, but I can’t purl. Any suggestions? Stay well, S.

Hi Susan. Welcome to the forum!

I switched from English to Continental last year and found purling to be difficult at first. Here are some links that helped me:

The best advice I can give you is to keep at it.

Good luck!

Thanks, Nathalie. I am having yarn overs, dropped stitches, and all kinds of horrible occurances that don’t happen to me in EK. I will keep trying, because I can see that it will be more efficient and I want to be able to do it, but my knitting is sloppy again :frowning: Stay well, S.

Hi Susan! Let me add my welcome.:hug:

I knit continental, and purl in a manner similar to Amy’s continental purling video here on KH. She pushes the yarn down in front of the left needle with her middle finger, but I use my index finger.

Hang in there! It is always hard to change your technique, and it will feel horribly awkward at first, but you’ll get the hang of it and come to love the speed and ease of conti knitting. :knitting:

There’s that picture of the thumb method.

That’s what I do if it’s going to last for more than 6 stitches.
K1P1 I do the finger method but it took a washcloth of moss stitch to get me used to it.

If you still have trouble with the purl, don’t worry about it. Some people knit continental and purl english.

That’s why I switched to english. I just struggled with the purls. There are times though I wish I could do continental…like when I’m ribbing. :doh:

I’m incredibly lazy, and when I couldn’t learn Continental “right now”, I gave up. I wanted to do projects, not practice LOL. However, lately I’ve been doing a lot of k1p1 ribbing, and boy do I wish I’d stuck it out! Maybe after this current pair of socks I’ll give it another shot – if I can make myself put my projects aside for a while.

I started off English, but I wanted to go faster so I switched to continental. Purling was hard at first but I kept with it. I found what worked for me after a little while and for me it’s way easier than English now and definitely faster :slight_smile: You’ll get it.

I had only used the English method of knitting, but l also wanted to try something new. I found the continental in the Finnish Method in both the knit and purl to be easier on my fingers and hands. It just takes a lot of practice and more of the same. It is really nice being able to do English and continental though. Good luck. :thumbsup:

Don’t worry too much about your knitting being ‘sloppy’, like Elizabeth Zimmerman said, after soaking and blocking the stitches even out on their own.

I learned to knit Continental since I am a lefty. At first I was slow with purling and had to pinch the yarn each time to wrap it, but now that I have better control of the needles, I just leave the yarn over my index finger and pull it around the needle. As long as there is enough tension on the working yarn, I can purl pretty fast.

I thought English knitting was usually faster though. All those “speed knitting” videos on You Tube usually are knitting English…

Not all of them. The one for the Guinness holder is Continental.
There are also a few that are neither style.

I watched the English knitting videos again last night and tried to do a few stitches English style. I don’t ever remember knitting feeling that awkward. I think it is the whole left-handed thing. I can barely get my right hand to do the necessary parts for Conti-knitting as it is! :teehee:

Ya know what? I think I am going to post a video (can we do that?) of me purling Continental style. I realized when I looked at Amy’s video again that my style has evolved to be different from what she is doing, and maybe my way would be easier for the OP.

I learned to knit from Amy’s videos just last year, and I re-watch the technique videos often. I find them so much more helpful than a book. I have to go to work right now, but that will be my project for tomorrow. If I can’t post a video here (probably can’t) I’ll just put it on my blog and link to it. I am doing a kkp pattern scarf right now (Scrunchable Scarf) and it is just zipping along.

Now my socks, on the other hand… Can you believe I left them sitting on the end table for over a month and they aren’t a bit longer than when I last worked on them? :mrgreen: They are very naughty (the Jaywalkers).

I switched to Continental knitting about a year ago when I was doing a project in ribbing. I had heard that ribbing was easier and faster using Continental knitting, and I found that to be true for me. Just a small movement with your finger moves the yarn from the front to the back of the needle so smoothly - it’s wonderful!

I agree that the purling is awkward at first, but now (after much practice) I feel that I have better control of the yarn when I purl.

I learned continental and have never really considered changing. I saw a friend knitting and was totally confused as to why she was moving around so much until I realized that was the “other” way to knit. LOL So I can’t compare continental purling to it since I have no idea how to do that but can say for me purling can occasionally be tight if it is small needles or bamboo needles. I much prefer slicker needles.

AHA!!! As promised, I made a short video and posted it on my blog. :happydance:

I am not sure if it will be much help, but it was the best I could do without a tripod. Anyway, check it out if you like. The yarn I used for the demo is Mmmmmmalabrigo. I also have some yarn pictures in the same entry that I bought this week. Including more Malabrigo…

Blog link in the sig!

PS, now I have even [B]more [/B]respect for Amy. It took me about 8 tries to get that video as good as it is. And it still doesn’t come close to how clear hers are! And I wasn’t even narrating!!! I can’t imagine making ALL the videos on this site. :thud:

OK, someone else posted this video in another thread and it is way better and so clear!

You know you want to come over to the dark side! Muhaha!!

[QUOTE=laikabear;1141921]OK, someone else posted this video in another thread and it is way better and so clear!…eature=related

Hi, Maureen, Thanks for forwarding the video I put on Knit Tips & Tricks over here! When you mentioned there was a thread about continental, especially the purling, I came looking for it so I could put in the website. Thanks for doing that! :muah:

A word about continental knitting. When I started knitting again last year I was knitting English. I read about continental and thought I’d give it a try. I had difficulty with the purling and worked out a way to do it so it wasn’t too awkward, but when I saw the above video it all fell into place. I already loved continental style, but getting the purl stitch right was the cherry on the sundae! Now I absolutely ROCKET when I knit, and it’s very smooth and efficient.

Too bad, really. I was already hooked on knitting - now I’m fanatically obsessed with it! Oh, well - at least it’s not going to rot my teeth! :slight_smile:

Have fun with this. I hope it helps all of you as much as it has helped me!

Ruthie :waving: :knitting: