Frustrated beginner

I’m not the world’s greatest knitter, but not the best. Still teaching myself new things. But I am getting very frustrated lately with my knitting. Seems no matter what the pattern, I am bound to make a mistake, and restarting hoping that it won’t happen again is just unrealistic. Should I spend more time learning how to frog my knitting or knit backwards? (Gives me a panic attack to rip it out) Not great at working backwards, just great at making the mistakes. Part of what it frustrating me currently is working a k3tog. My work is just too tight to fit my needle through all three stitches. Maybe I just need to go back to the basics and work on my tension? I’m falling apart! And so is my knitting! Anyone have any calming suggestions for me? So I’ll go back to enjoying this?

Welcome to the forum and to knitting!
I find that the more I knit, the more expert I become at ripping out and tinking. Yes, it’s a good idea to practice this on a test swatch so that it’s not so panic inducing.
Working on developing a steady, even tension is important and although you can adjust the gauge with changes in needle size, it’s a good idea to relax and loosen up a death grip on the needles. it’s just more fun that way.
I think we all get discouraged at some point (probably multiple points) but it’s worth it to press on, correct mistakes and keep learning new techniques.

Hello there!!

Welcome to the forum. I have a feeling you are getting so nervous about making a mistake that you are tightening up your tension, also may be causing the goofs.

I would suggest using lifelines. These are wonderful and I use them all the time. You can learn more about lifelines in this video. There are a lot on YouTube too.

Another tip I have if you are working in the round on circular needles I would suggest you use Interchangeable Needles. If you do this you can have your working needle, the one in your right hand if you are right handed, at the size you need for the pattern you are working. Let’s say a US 8 / 5 mm. On the other end of the circular on your holding needle, if right handed this will be the needle held in your left hand put a smaller needle. You can play with the size of the smaller needle but I would go down to a US 5 or US 6 to try. This will allow the stitches to be easier to work. Remember only your working needle sets the size of your stitches the other needle just holds the stitches until they need to be knitted/purled etc.

If you are working flat you can still use this method with a circular knitting flat however it is much slower as you have to change your needle tips at the end of each row.

Please try to relax. Knitting is suppose to bring you joy. If you start feeling frustrated set it aside for a bit. You will find you have to set it aside less often as you get more comfortable with your new hobby. Please keep us posted on how you are doing. Feel free to PM me if I can help or you just need to scream at someone about the project you are doing. I’m certainly not an expert but I do love fiber arts and like to help when I can.

we ALL make mistakes, they’re just part of the game.
the trick (for me) is, take it one stitch at a time.
If you hunt around here, you’ll come across the saga of my green grandpa sweater, which is taking me FOREVER to complete.

and I’m a fairly experienced knitter, with YEARS and hundreds of sweaters behind me.

have a glass of wine, relax, and take it slow.
and remember: its only knitting.
not life or death. :slight_smile:

Thanks for all the responses. A little encouragement goes a long way. I have been knitting off and on for 10 years, but I would still consider myself a beginner as I have not put in consecutive hours devoted to my craft. That being said, I am in the process of re-learning how to hold my knitting needles and yarn. I am learning the 'flicking" method rather than how I was knitting before by dropping the yarn for every stitch. Too slow with no flow!! However, I am having trouble with the tension. Using this method I am finding that I am knitting WAY too tight, and have not figured out how to not do this. Any help here would be appreciated! Again, thanks for the encouragement.

One of the handiest things I have ever learned is to use a rescue thread. After several rows, I use a needle and crochet hook to draw a thread through the stitches on my needle … that stays for several more rows and then I can put in another rescue thread. That way if you make a mistake and need to pull something out you just have to go to your rescue thread! It’s saved me several times!

A rescue thread or lifeline is a wonderful idea.
For knitting too tightly, make sure that you’re not knitting on the tips of the needles. That’ll always make the new stitches very tight. Make sure each stitch sits on the full barrel of the needle before going on to the next.