Struggling with ribbing and purl stitches

Hi all,

I’m a real newbie - just started knitting this week.

I’ve mastered how to knit and purl (sort of) :smiley: , but I just can’t do the knit one, purl one thing and I need to do it for the pattern I’d like to do!! I’m fine on the first row, but when I get to the second row I just get stuck.

Am I supposed to be doing the same stitch that I have on the first row? So if there’s a knit above, should I be doing a knit stitch, or a purl stitch??

Secondly, I’m fine doing purl stitches, but I always seem to get them really tight around the needle and really struggle to get the next row of knitting on there because I can barely get the needle into the stitch! What am I doing wrong? I’m fine with the knit stitch though… :??

Thanks heaps!

When you’re ribbing, remember that when you turn your work, the stitches change appearance. Even though you knit a stitch on the first row, that now is a purl as it faces you. That’s what you need to look at. Whatever you did on the previous row is done. You only address the row you’re looking at.

So as you do ribbing, you knit the knit stitches (the v’s) as they face you and purl the purls as they face you.

Also, if your last stitch is a purl on a row and you turn it, you start with a knit, or vice versa.

If you are having trouble purling, it sounds like you may be twisting your knit stitches in the previous row–making them tight. Make sure your needle goes into the front of the loop from left to right–the ‘leg’ of the stitch closest to you.

This connects to what I said about the stitches as they face you. If you are having trouble purling into the purl stitch that’s facing you, it’s because the knit stitch from the row before is tight.

I hope all this makes sense.

It really helped me to look at ribbing as alternating panels of stockinette stitch! The knits are the “right” side of the stockinette, so you knit them like you would when you’re knitting stockinette. The purls are the “wrong” side so you do treat them the same as you would if it was just plain stockinette.