The Tension in Your Stitches

Hi Everyone!

I have another question for all of you… I was wondering how long it took some of you to get just the right tension in your stitches- or did it just come normal.

I am having a difficult time adjusting my knitting so my projects aren’t too tight- but then not too loose either.

Any guidance would be appreciated!

Thanks! :frog:

I don’t know that you can really change your tension. Practice will help it even out, but if you knit tightly, I think you’ll most likely continue to knit tightly and vice versa. You can change it while concentrating very hard, but when you relax it will go back to what is natural for you. that is why it is SOOOOOOO important to make a gauge swatch before starting.

yeah, tension is such a fickle creature. I used to be an extremely tight knitter, but I’ve loosened up over the years. But there are definitely influences out there - how tired you are, how stressed out you are, how warm or cold you are, how much you’ve been drinking (maybe this is only me? :shifty: ), etc.

Practice will help to even it out, and you can also look at how you hold your yarn. Sometimes the way you hold your yarn can contribute to your tension. I don’t know if I can explain, b/c it’s just something I’ve noticed. When I first started knitting I was doing my version of continental - holding the yarn in my left hand but wrapping like english style. I noticed that the way I was holding the yarn to do this style resulted in my tight work. I made myself learn the “proper” way to do continental, and I started holding the yarn like Amy does in her video, and my gauge started loosening up. Not too loose, still a little on the tight side, but good enough for me. I generally only have to go up one needle size now, as opposed to 3 previously.

Good luck!

[color=indigo]I vote for the idea it’s really difficult to adjust tenstion. I found that with time, my tension evened out. Whenever I need to teach myself a new technique, I tackle a big project, like a baby blanket, and usually by the time I’m finished, I’ve made a habit of the new technique. It provides enough practice to make it second nature. :teehee: [/color]

I used to be a super tight knitter…I could barely get the needle into the stitch most times. My tension was even, just super tight.

I made a conscious decision to loosen up, and now I have a loose, even tension. It was hard, and it does vary. Say, if I’m knitting while watching Battlestar Galactica it gets tighter. :teehee:

But I think you can change your tension if you try. I had to change both the way I knit and purl, too. If you practice it enough, the new behavior becomes second nature.

Yeah, just practice, and it’ll come out evenly.

I find that if I’m knitting flat then my tension is loose and I have to go down about 2 needle sizes. But if I’m knitting in the round then I’m either right on gauge or even a little bit tight.

Guess that means my purling is the culprit…

Lisa: I’ve noticed that, too. My flat knitting is loose, but my in-the-round knitting is tighter.

As everyone else said, it just comes with practice. While you’re practicing, don’t worry too much about whether the stitches are even - blocking/washing helps even them out quite a lot.