Help with tension

A couple years ago I posted about my tension problem. I was tightening too much, therefore making it hard to knit. I broke the habit for like a day, but then went back to my bad knitting ways lol. Yesterday I started a scarf and decided that this time I really am going to try to break my bad knitting habit. I’m doing great with the knit stitch, I finally found a happy medium of loose but not too loose, and the desire to tug on the yarn is barely there. But I keep wanting to pull the yarn a bit(not as as I used to pull!!) because the purl always comes out much more loosely than my knit stitches. I’ve tried a few different yarn holds, wrapping a couple extra times around different fingers, and nothing seems to really help. Anyone have any suggestions?? Thanks!!

This is normal. For the majority of knitters purl stitches come out looser than knit stitches. You don’t need to “fix” it, IMO, unless your purl stitches are so loose that you have actual holes in your work.

Your knits and purls will become closer in tension with time and practice. And don’t forget that once you wash/block things all of the stitches will even out a bit and the difference in tension between the knits and purls will hardly be/not be noticeable.

I’m one of the rare ones who purls tight. I wrap my yarn the same, but I do hold it close to the needles. It tends to hurt my hands if I do for long, BUT my knitting is very even with not much rowing out so I let it be.

I’m not sure what to tell you, but practice. :shrug:

I don’t know if this applies to English style, I knit Continental (no, it’s not better, it works for me!) Wrapping the yarn backwards or opposite to the way that you normally do makes a twisted stitch which is tighter. You have to be aware of it and knit into the back loop when you come to it, but I used to do it a lot and sometimes do it now. Before I got better at the tension thing I even tried a smaller needle on the purl side of stockinette.

Yes, that works.thats called combination knitting. For ribbing I actually do that on the first purl after a knit. It does twist the stitch so it shows a bit on the back if you don’t untwist for reversible knits. For some things like a hat that won’t have a flipped up brim it works well.

I actually unknowingly used the combined purl for a couple of years, before realizing I wasn’t purling Continentaly lol.

I think it’s just the fact that I’m so OCD about my knitting and crocheting, so if I see that the purl is even a little bit looser than my knits I automatically want to make them the same size as the knits. Hopefully with practice I’ll get better at it!!

Oh!! I have noticed that I’m having NO arthritis pains in my wrists since I loosened up my tension, so I’m definitely gonna keep at it!! :smiley:

That’s definitely a big incentive to continue with the looser knitting. Glad you found a way to ease up on your grip and relax your tension.

It most certainly is!!! I used to only be able to knit a few rows before I started hurting, now I can go at least an hour with no pain. It’s awesome!! :mrgreen:

There was another knitter in here recently that we suggested the painstaking her hands might be knitting too tight. She tried to loosen up and it helped as well! :thumbsup:

Achy hands and arms were a big reason I wanted to loosen up my knitting. It helped. A lot.

It really is amazing the difference it makes loosening up just a little bit. :slight_smile:

Nice autocorrect in my post about pain. At least it sorta fit this time and you got my point. :lol:

Yes. Jan is referring to me lol! Yep mee. I started knitting way too tightly so in attempt to see if it was the tightness causing finger/hand pain i tried knitting looser. Its helped. :slight_smile:

Perhaps practice knitting some swatches before the actual piece to get your tension right? Practice makes perfect n all that jazz :slight_smile:

I can do the knit stitches without pulling on the yarn, but for some reason I keep wanting to tighten up those purl stitches. I’m trying a bunch of different yarn holds, so hopefully eventually I’ll get it!! :slight_smile:

I hate purling. its so…annoying lol