Learning new techniques: from English to continental to ? combined?

I’m embarking on learning some new techniques. I’m an English-style knitter, but I hate doing ribbing more than anything. From looking at various videos and reading people’s comments, I think I might enjoy doing ribbing more if I learned a different basic style. Combined style looks like it might be the smoothest, most streamlined. But it does include holding the yarn on the left! So I’m starting with trying to do continental first, to get my left hand use to it. It feels so awkward! But even so, it’s already getting a little better.

Happy knitting, everyone!


Doing ribbing is much easier in combined, but you don’t need to learn continental first, that may confuse you. Just go to the combined and remember, we were all awkward with it first no matter which style we use.

I don’t like purling in english either so if I need to do a lot I knit continental. I can’t get the hang of the combined purl. :lol:

Purling english is easy - it’s the same hand motion as knitting, it’s just the needle inserted differently. Purling combined should be easy for you, it’s like yarning over with a crochet hook.

Yeah, purling in English is easy, it’s just that ribbing takes so many extra motions to keep moving the working yarn from front to back and back to front. That’s what bugs me about it, and why I want to learn a way that is more streamlined.

So far, the continental is getting easier. The KH video shows using the middle finger to push the working yarn down when purling; I find myself using the index finger of my R hand, but it works, too.

Questions about combined:

Oh wait–I should post this over in the how-to area.

Thank you both the the encouragement! That’s one of the best things about a forum.


There are many ways to do things. Rox on Ravelry (on the home page she has a column-Ask a Knitter), has another way to do the Continental purl stitch which you might like. It uses the index finger of the right hand. Check it out.

To throw in another option, I find it very easy to purl using the Portuguese style knitting. This has many different names. The yarn is looped around the neck or through a clip at the shoulder. The yarn is manipulated by the thumbs with little overall hand movement.

In fact I find purling easier in Portuguese than the knit stitch. I am doing a shawl in garter stitch and I am only using the purl stitch.

I’m sorry I can’t provide a link, YouTube is block here, but search YouTube for Portuguese Knitting and watch the videos.