New and a little bit pathetic

I learned to knit yesterday at a 2 hour class for beginners. I bought my yarn and needles and spent a lot of the day today ripping out stiches (yes, frogging, I know) and then starting all over. The yarn keeps breaking which is making me think I should have bought something different. Also, I have way more stiches than I started with. Frankly, the “scarf” I am knitting is so sad looking that it is funny!

Here are my 3 questions:

  1. any suggestions on a yarn that might be good for beginners? The instructor strongly suggested wool and the one I bought is kind of fuzzy making things more difficult.

  2. how in the world did I add stiches with out trying? I cast on 34 stitches and I have over 40 now.

  3. how long did it take you before you knew what you were doing? I just need a little encouragement to keep trying. :wink:

Thanks very much! I appreciate any words of wisdom!

Yarn shouldn’t break. Go out and buy yourself a skein of inexpensive acrylic or blend for your ‘starter yarn’. It doesn’t have to be the cheap-o stuff. Plymouth Encore or Lion Woolease are both blends that are a decent yarn, yet not too expensive.

One of the biggest hurdles for new knitters is to keep the number of stitches even. Some lose them, some gain them. If you’re doing any kind of ribbing, it’s common to forget to put the yarn in the proper position for the stitch you’re making–in back for knit, in front for purl. If you want, you can put a stitch marker on the needle every 10 stitches or so and keep counting.

Do yourself a favor–save the frogging for a later date. Just keep knitting. If you make a mistake, so what? Get used to knitting and purling. The more you knit, the more even your stitches will become and the more confident you’ll get. Your first finished object doesn’t have to be model perfect.

LOOK at your knitting. See what the knit stitches look like. Learn to recognize what happens when you purl. One of the best things you can learn, and it won’t happen on your second day of knitting, is to understand the effect what you’re actually doing has on the piece of work.

Hang in there. There are knitters on this forum who have been knitting for only a few months and are turning out amazing stuff. You can too!
Here’s a secret----it ain’t rocket science!

well i would say your yarn is probably breaking because you are pulling too tight. one thing that us new people tend to do after we make the stitch is give it an extra tug before doing the next stitch which makes yuor knitting too tight. the only time i ever really find the need to give that tug is after the first stitch in the row.

you are likely adding stitches in that very first stitch after you turn your work. if you are doing all knit stitches when you get to the end and turn often you will find that your yarn goes up OVER the needle. When that happens it usually looks like there is an extra stitch there to work. You need to make sure you are pulling that yarn down and behind the needle. If your yarn isn’t too thick you can usually fix the occasional extra stitch by just knitting two together. don’t do a whole bunch of them at once and it is better not to do it at the beginning of the row, just do it in the middle somewhere. that Knit 2 will be kind of tight to work but you can do it.

i started with a really thick wool yarn. easy to see the stitches with! apparently teachers like to tell people to use a lighter yarn…shrug mine was dark red and black so who knows.

i have been knitting since february and still do very basic stuff…Kelly has been knitting for about the same time and does AMAZING stuff (including SOX!) It just depends on the time you have and what you want to do. I am pretty content to do square stuff so i don’t try too hard to do other stuff. there is one lady who was making hand warmers five days after starting. Don’t worry about others…just keep working at it and you will be knittin’ like crazy soon enough! and don’t hesitate to ask questions…we love to help

and do what the rest of us do…watch and watch and watch the videos and you will get it really quick!!

Thanks for the great advice!! I will go out tomorrow and buy a different yarn and just keep going. :XX:

oh well heck…yeah what she said much faster than me!

Hi, I dont really have any help to offer as I am new as well. I am just learning and I know how you feel, specially with the adding stitches part. I feel hopeless but am getting better. I just wanted to say stick with it and keep going, you will get better as you go along. It really does get easier and it is so rewarding when you look back and see you have made something.

Actually, my socks are sitting like orphans on my dresser because I screwed up somewhere…

I agree with everyone’s advice…I started with a big fat yarn and big fat needles, too. Lion Brand WoolEase Thick & Quick, to be exact. It is a bit easier to see the anatomy of your stitches with a lighter-colored yarn. That is very important, as Ingrid said above.

I would bet that you are accidentally creating “Yarn-Overs”, moving the working yarn to the front before making the next knit st. But…just think. NOW when a pattern ASKS for a YO, you will already know how to do it! You learned a new stitch without even trying! WAY TO GO! :cheering:

And/or, you arent moving the yarn down & back when you turn to start the next row, so you are knitting into both of the “legs” of the st below. I dont think Ive ever seen a pattern that asks for that. :thinking:

Knitting is awkward for everyone in the beginning. You just have to find your own comfortable way to hold your yarn & needles, your own pace, and your own tension. It will come. I promise! :thumbsup:

Also, if you haven’t checked out the videos at this site, be sure and do so. You are so fortunate that you found this place so early in your knitting career. :smiley: I think I struggled along about a week or so, at the brink of tossing my needles in the trash, when I stumbled upon Amy’s videos . Watching her hands as she knits helped me to finally “get” it. :thumbsup:

Oh, and welcome! :mrgreen:

Wow! All this support is just great. I am on my way to buy new yarn and fatter needles and will give this another shot this afternoon. I am sure I’ll be back with more questions, and appreciate the kindness of everyone!

i started on size 15 needles with big fat yarn. I haven’t used the 15s in a while though every so often i pic up the scarf-like thing i am working on (not sure what it wants to be yet!) 17s. The other day i started working on something with 15s and i felt like a kid in kindergarten with the big fat crayons! honestly, i like the way scarves with big fat yarn look like with big fat needles!

I agree with Ingrid…just keep knitting. I’m really bad at follow-through :rollseyes: so when I started knitting I set little rules for myself – the very first thing I did was to knit through an entire skein of cheap Red Heart yarn. I just cast on and kept knitting and knitting and knitting…some days minutes, other days hours…until it was gone. I ended up with a very long scarf that looks awful at the beginning and a heck of a lot better at the end. :smiley:

A lot of places I checked said size 10 needles were good for beginners, so that’s what I used. I’m glad I went that route because now, having used larger needles and finding them somewhat cumbersome, I think I would have gotten more frustrated using anything larger than 10 or 11. But, that said, I dont’ think that size/weight is as important as simply being able to see your stitches!

Good luck! :smiley:

Hi all. I’ve been knitting for about a month and find it so frustrating! But i completed my first project yesterday- a scarf. Now i am working on another scarf. However I am so anxious to start incorporating new fancy stiches in my scarf but one of my friends told me i should stick with the simple garter stich. How long do you think i should wait until i get a little more ambitious? Also what is the next suggested project after scarves? Thanks!

If you feel ready to try new things, then go for it! My second type project following scarves was a hat, but dishcloths are a good sample project for experimenting with new stitches. Because they’re small, they don’t require much yarn; and because they don’t take as long, you get more immediate satisfaction.

Aimster17~~ I have only been knitting for a month and a half but everytime I start getting really comfortable with something I move one to something else. So this has been my progression so far:

garter stitch
purl stich
ribbed scarf so I could practice both…added fringe on the scarf
made two more scarves…got comfortable
made a hat using dpn’s (learned decreasing and using dpns)

Now i am working on a scarf with color changes on circulars
and next with be cables

Do what you want to do. After an entire scarf of garter, I’ll bet you’ve got that stitch figured out. Mittens and hats are good “step up” projects and they’re small, so they are a quick reward.

Some people :heart: socks. Some people like to practice new stitches by making wash cloths.

There are endless choices out there. You can look at the free patterns tab at the top of the page or you can go to an online magazine like to get new ideas.

Welcome to the forum!

Aimster17~~ I have only been knitting for a month and a half but everytime I start getting really comfortable with something I move one to something else. So this has been my progression so far:

garter stitch
purl stich
ribbed scarf so I could practice both…added fringe on the scarf
made two more scarves…got comfortable
made a hat using dpn’s (learned decreasing and using dpns)

Now i am working on a scarf with color changes on circulars
and next with be cables