Thursday, July 31, 2008

Tutorial: Decreasing: K2Tog

Decreases are used to shape knitting for things like sleeves. They can also be used with increases to make lace. Using them together keeps the number of stitches constant on each row.

Step 1: knit to the point where the decrease is desired.

Step 2: Stick the needle into the next two stitches.

Step 3: wrap the yarn around the needle you just stuck into the stitches.

Step 4: Pull the yarn through the two stitches.

Step 5: Drop the two stitches off of the needle.

Now you have one stitch where previously you had two. This same procedure can be used for the K3Tog. The P2Tog is the same, just hold the yarn in the front of the needles.

I decided to take the video off, because the lighting was terrible, and made it hard to see anything. I plan on redoing this video this weekend.

Links for this tutorial and others can be found on the left side of the blog.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Our Trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee

One of the things I was looking forward to doing while we were in Gatlinburg was visiting a yarn shop located there, called the Smokey Mountain Spinnery.

Due to a lack of planning on my part, Patrick and I walked for what seemed like a mile uphill to the yarn shop. It really didn't look all that far on the map. As we were walking up the hill, we stopped in the shade to look at the misleading map, a really nice lady told us she was a local and asked where were trying to go. We told her and she said she really didn't think the Spinnery was still open. At this point, I felt sort of dumb for not calling the place to make sure it was still in business. Then she said that the shopping center where the Spinnery was suposed to be has free parking. I said, this is silly, we should just turn back, we don't even know if the place will be there when we get there. But Patrick insisted that we keep walking. I kept slathering on the sunblock, and we traveled on. When we finally made it to the shopping center called the Winery, I saw the sign. The Spinnery was just ahead, on the second story of a nearby building.

The store was open! We went up and took a look around. There were lots of different beautiful yarns, and I wanted all of them, but narrowed it down to three skeins. I bought two sock yarns and one yarn that was spun by the owner. I really like the one that she spun; I’d say it’s a worsted weight yarn. I bought the really big hank of it, and I’m sort of wondering how I will put it into balls so I can use it. It’s a really pretty light brown Alpaca yarn.

One thing I really liked about this store is that there are actually two stores. The yarn shop is on one side of the store and the Smoky Mountain angler shop is on the other. This made it easier for me to shop without feeling bad that Patrick was bored. Another feature of the store that I liked were the llama and alpaca dolls around the store holding knitting needles. Selma said that they are made by a friend of hers. They were adorable, and I really wanted to get one, but I decided to buy the yarn instead.
While we were checking out, she told us she was headed to downtown Gatlinburg to demonstrate spinning. She is part of Smoky Mountain Tunes & Tales™, which is a program where musicians, artisans, and storytellers entertain visitors while teaching them something about Gatlinburg’s culture and history.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Comfy Cotton

Cotton is a material that most people who live in warm climates like New Orleans are very farmiliar with. Cotton is much cooler than wool, for the most part cotton is machine washable and dryable, and it seems to get softer the more you wear it. There are disadvantages to this fiber though, it isn't stretchy, which makes it harder to knit with. It shrinks if it isn't preshrunk. Cotton garments can be very heavy, especially when wet.

I found an interesting website all about cotton production and how the fiber goes from plant to fabric. It is the website for the National Cotton Council of America. The Cotton Counts: "Cotton: From Field to Fabric" article tells all about the Cotton Boll and how cotton Seed is used to feed livestock and make oil for salad dressing. Cotton is also used in Astronaut's flight suits and in the American Dollar.

Cotton, when used for knitting, can be Mercerized or not. Mercerizing refers to a process where the fibers are "immersed under tension in a caustic soda solution and then later neutralized. This causes fiber to swell permanently. This gives the fabric a silken sheeen, improves its strength and increases its affinity for dye" (This definition is from; field to fabric)

Here is the 100% cotton, it is Cottontots from Bernat, in the Little Boy Blue colorway:

Here is the Mercerized Cotton, it is called Sinfonia, made by Omega, in the black colorway:
Here are the two yarns together:

Have a Comfy Day!

Monday, July 28, 2008

This week in the Blog

This week I have some things planned:
Tuesday: Comfy Cotton - about knitting with Cotton
Wednesday: A recap of our trip to Gatlinburg
Thursday: Tutorial on the Knit Two Together Decrease. (K2Tog)
Friday: Project Profile: Under the Hoodie from the Stitch and Bitch The Knitter's Hand Book

I hope everyone had a great weekend!

Here are some upcoming events:
MidCity Art Market: August 28th from 10am or 4pm at Palmer Park.
Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival August 28 through September 1 (Labor Day Weekend)Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston from October 18-19.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Project Profile: The Striped Socks

Knitting socks is somehow addictive. I'm really not sure why. I mean, you can go to any clothing store and buy socks. Store bought socks aren't expensive, in a lot of cases, buying the yarn to make a sock is more expensive than buying a six pack of regular socks. Socks are usually knit on tiny needles with pretty thin yarn, so they can take a while to knit. My favorite yarns to knit are the ones that are self striping. Its sort of magical how the stripes form.

I made these socks a while back, using a pattern I found at WendyKnits. She has a lot of free patterns available and some really beautiful patterns for sale at the Loopy Ewe. I'm pretty sure I used this pattern. I really like these socks and the instructions were very easy to follow. The thing I have noticed about these socks is that the more I wash them, the better they look and feel. The more they come together and look like a real sock and not just a bunch of stitches. It was made with some Regia yarn I picked up in Natchez while I was there for the Balloon Race.

Here are the socks I finished on my recent trip to Tennessee. This yarn is also Regia that I bought at Garden District Needleworks. I was surprised that I actually picked out such bright colors, I'm more of a neutral tones kind of girl, but I really do like them, and most of the people who have seen them really do like the colors. This pattern was from the Summer 2007 issue of Interweave Knits Magazine. To be perfectly honest, I preferred the pattern from Wendy Knits. The cast on in the pattern is the Eastern Cast-On, which I did a tutorial about yesterday. I find it a little hard to keep the needles and the yarn together at a good distance apart. Maybe I just need to practice it more. It's on page 24 of the issue, in an article in their "Beyond the Basics" Section entitled "Working Socks from the Toe Up".

Both pairs of socks were worked on sets of double pointed needles. Those of you out there who knit socks, what is your favorite kind of needles to use? DPN's or Circulars?

Have a Great Weekend!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Tutorial - The Eastern Cast on

When knitting things like socks from the toe up, this cast on method is very useful. I just learned how to do it and thought I'd share in case anyone else was having problems with it. As I said, this is new to me, so if you have a better way to do it, or any little tweeks to make to the way I'm doing it, feel free to chime in.

Step 1: Take two double pointed needles (DPNs) and hold them parallel to each other, with a little space between them. (Just in case you are wondering, the space should be about the size where you can fit your pinky finger through the middle of the two DPNs)

Step 2: Leaving a little bit of a tail, stick the yarn between the two DPNs. so that your tail is in front of the bottom needle and the yarn connected to the ball of yarn is behind the top needle. I've found that if you tie a slip knot when you are starting and put it on the bottom needle, it is easier to keep the needles parallel to each other.

Step 3: Wrap the yarn around the two needles half as many times as the number of stitches you need to cast on. Wrap the yarn over the top needle, under the bottom needle... When you get your desired amount of casted on stitches, take the yarn that is connected to the ball of yarn and put it in the back of the two needles.

Step 4: Starting with the stitches on the top needle, knit across.

Step 5: Knit the stitches on the bottom needle.

Now, you have cast on stitches and can proceed with your sock or whatever it is you are making.

Here is the video, I hope it clears up any questions you might have. But if it doesn't, feel free to leave a comment. Go ahead and mute the video, I completely forgot what the background "music" was and have gotten some comments that it is annoying. I listened to it again and am a little embarrassed that I actually pubished this. I think the video is good, but I havn't been able to take the time to change the background sound.

Check out some of my other popular posts:
The Swift and the Yarn Winder
Might as well face it, you're addicted to yarn.
Andean Folk Knits-A Book Review
Finished Object: The "Shaped Triangle" Shawl
Or check out the tutorials on the left margin of the blog.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The Tail of the Dragon

One day of our trip, Patrick and I drove the loop at Cades Cove. We stopped at the Old Mill on the loop and talked to some of the rangers about how to get to the Tail of the Dragon. The Tail of the Dragon is a road along the side of a mountain, the great allure of it is that this road that extends for eleven miles has 318 curves, so it is sort of like a roller coaster. The ranger told us about a road that leads from Cades Cove to the middle of the Tail of the Dragon. The road is called Parson’s Branch Road, but he warned us that it is a very bumpy road and about twenty streams cross the road. Also note that this primative road is closed during the winter. Parson’s Branch Road was a beautiful, very scenic route. When we reached the end of the road, we took a left turn and we were on the Tail of the Dragon.

We drove to a city called Deal’s Gap, North Carolina, where there is a hotel, gift shop, restaurant and many motorcycles. Motorcyclists just love all of the turns in the road, and so this road attracts them in large numbers. Patrick was a little sad that he didn’t bring his bike, but I was sort of happy, because it seemed dangerous enough in a truck. There is a tree by the hotel that has a sign on it, Tree of Shame, No Gain & A lot of Pain.

This tree has pieces of wrecked bikes and cars hanging from it. Inside of the gift shop, there is a wall of pictures and a lot of the pictures are of people who crashed, the ones I saw weren’t bad crashes, just bloody arms.

We had lunch at the Dragon’s Den Grill, where my grilled cheese sandwich was very good. After we had finished looking at everything, we headed back to our truck and drove the entire Tail of the Dragon. After a little while, I was feeling a little sick, I guess it was all of the turns making my lunch want to come up. We saw a lot of motorcycles and sports cars riding the Tail, and every time a motorcycle came up, we would pull over since we were going slower than they wanted to go. Along the way, there are some very scenic places to pull over, which over look the mountains and a nearby lake. At the end of the Tail, I was happy to be going to some straighter roads. We took the Foothills Parkway back to Cades Cove; this is also a very pretty ride, with stops along the way and trails to hike.

That afternoon, I took a long nap and Patrick went for a hike. That is when his wallet went missing. We searched the camper and the truck and the campsite for what seemed like hours and couldn’t find it. The next day, we retraced his steps from his hike and the wallet wasn’t there either. The day after we arrived home, we went to Target and bought Patrick a new Wallet, we also went to the DMV and tried to get him a duplicate driver’s license, but since he didn’t have his insurance card, they wouldn’t give him one. This story does have a happy ending, after we were home for a couple of days, a package arrived in the mail, and it was Patrick’s wallet. The wallet still had everything in it. I’m not sure who sent it back, but we are really happy that there are still honest people in this world. If you’ve ever found a wallet and sent it back to its owner, I’d like to personally thank you. It is so nice when something that you think is lost forever comes back.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Ravelry is a website for Knitters and Crocheters to keep track of their yarn, projects, and various other information related to their crafts. It is still in the Beta version, which means that they are still getting everything ready. If you would like to sign up for a Ravelry account, just go to the Ravelry Site and put yourself on the waiting list. I think it's just taking a day or two to join now, when I signed up, it took a couple of months to get an account. When they go public (not sure when that will be) anyone will be able to go to the website and look at all of the information stored there. The thing I really like about this site is that if I see a pattern I like, I can look it up and see how other knitters/crocheters liked the pattern, what kind of yarn they used and how it looks on different people. I like looking to see which colors they chose and to see if they ran into any problems or if they made any modifications. There are also groups that people can sign up for to connect with other knitters who share other interests too. If you want to look me up on ravelry, just do a search for KnittingKel.

Monday, July 21, 2008

MidCity Art Market this weekend

This Saturday is the MidCity Art Market from 10am or 4pm at Palmer Park.
Come out and support local artists. There are photographers, painters, jewelry makers, and various other disciplines. There is usually a band playing and local restaurants so you can grab a bite to eat.

This week I have some things in the works for your viewing pleasure.
Tuesday is a little information about the Ravelry website
Thursday is a tutorial on the Eastern Cast On
Friday is a project profile of the striped socks that I finished on my vacation.

Here are some other upcoming events:
Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival August 28 through September 1 (Labor Day Weekend)Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston from October 18-19. The St. Pius X Players are presenting the play "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat." The plays are July 24, 25 and 26 at 8pm. It takes place at St. Piux X Gym which is at 6666 Spanish Fort Blvd. New Orleans, La.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

And We're Back!

Missed me? Patrick and I went on vacation last week to the Great Smokey Mountains. We borrowed my parent's camper and stayed at the campground in Cades Cove. The campground was a bit more primitive than a lot of the ones I've stayed at in the recent past. There weren't any hookups for electricity or water and while there was a restroom a short walk from our site, there weren't any showers. It is a beautiful campground in the mountains.

The cades cove loop/settlement is not very far from the campground, a lot of people take bikes to the loop and some hike there. We thought about biking the loop, but decided to take our truck instead. Taking the truck was a good thing though, because we found out about a road that leads to another road called the Dragon's Tail. The Dragon's Tail is an eleven mile stretch of of road through the mountain with 318 curves in it. It is like a roller coaster and motorcyclists just love it. The road that lead from Cades Cove to the Dragon's Tail is called Parson's Branch Road and it ends in the middle of the Dragon's Tail. We went to the left and ended up in a place called Deal's Gap. But more on that in a future post.

We spent a lot of time in Gatlinburg too. Stay tuned to future posts about our adventures in the Great Smokey Mountains.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Happy Birthday Laney (The Dog)

Today is my dog Laney’s fifth Birthday. He is a Sheltie.

I first met Laney in May of 2004, I had just graduated from college, and I wanted to get a dog. I really wanted to get a Yorkshire terrier, because I had one named Kopper (1988 to 1998) and I really loved that dog. Instead of just getting a Yorkie, I did some research to find out exactly which dog breed I wanted to get. I probably should have looked at mixed breeds, but I really wanted some sort of a baseline of how the dog would be. With mixed breeds, it’s sort of a hit or miss. Will the dog be big, or small? Will he have lots of fur, or have short hair? I looked at all of the dog breeds at the American Kennel Club Website and made a list of the breeds that interested me. Then I looked at all of the breed's traits and narrowed down the list until I finally arrived at the conclusion that I wanted a Sheltie.
When i met Laney, he was eleven months old, which really wasn’t a bad thing. He had already been trained to go outside to potty and he didn’t cry all night like some puppies tend to do. He was already crate trained too.
His name is actually Lane. I just call him Laney so people don’t confuse him with my dad. And no, he was not named after my dad. Here’s how he got his name. When Donna, the breeder, told her mom’s former neighbor that Bree (Laney’s mom) was expecting a litter, the neighbor who’s name is Elaine, asked her to name a puppy after her and she agreed. When Laney’s litter was born, there weren’t any girls, just boys. So, in honor of Ms. Elaine, he was named Lane. When I brought him home, he already knew his name, so he remained Lane.

His favorite things to do are siting on sofas with the ones he loves, barking at just about anything from people walking by on the street to the neighbor's dog.

A funny addition to that story is that about a year later, Donna told Ms. Elaine that Bree was expecting another litter and Ms. Elaine asked, since the last litter didn't have any girls, could you name one of the girls from this litter after me? So, Donna named one of the girl puppies Lanie after Ms. Elaine and we went to visit Donna's new litter and my mom fell in love with Lanie. So, when Lanie was four months old, she became part of our family, and her name was changed to Cupcake, because having two dogs and one human with the same/very similar names gets confusing. I wonder what George Foreman's family does.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Project Profile: El Gazaro, the Parrot

When I finished knitting this parrot Patrick quickly named him El Gazaro. I decided it would be best for him to stay with us. The pattern came from one of my favorite knitting books which is called World of Knitted Toys by Kath Dalmeny.

This is a great book for anyone who wants to make a special toy for a child in their life. There are many animals to knit, with the book broken down into seven sections. The sections are as follows: In the Jungle, Australian Outback, Down on the Farm, The Deep Blue Sea, Forrest Friends, On Safari, and The Snowy Regions. With fourty-seven animals in all, this is a great resource to make some animals that aren't all that easy to find in toy stores.

One cute feature of this book is that each section has a doll of a person who would be found in each particular area and in the clothes that they would wear.

Some of the animals included in this book are: the Gorilla, spider Monkey, Merino Sheep, Koala, Duck-Billed Platypus, Kangaroo, cat, Mallard Duck, Chicken, Dolphin, Shark, Octopus, Turtle, Moose, Zebra, Husky Dog, Walrus, and Chipmunk.

I'm thinking it would be fun, if I ever have kids to fill up their rooms with knitted toys. A very good thing about making toys for your children is that you can control what is going into the toys and with all of the product recalls these days, that can really give you peace of mind. Also, knitted items seem to last a very long time, so they can be appreciated for generations to come.

Here is the technical information for El Gazaro, the Parrot. I used a US 3 sized needle. The yarn is from my yarn stash. The red is a yarn that Lion Brand yarn company used to make. It is called Chunky USA, the colorway is Patriot Red. This is a 100% Acrylic Yarn. I think the brown yarn was Red Heart Super Saver and the white was Wool-Ease Chunky. I was trying to use up some older yarn, that's why it's made of so many different yarns.

Have a great day!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Tutorial: The Yarn Over

Yarn Overs are used in knitting to increase the number of stitches and to make holes in the knitted fabric. Yarn overs are very useful in lace knitting.

Yarn overs are very easy. Like their name suggests, you just put the yarn over the needle. When I was first learning to knit, I was a little intimidated by them.

Step 1: Once you already have your knitting on the needles, knit to the desired point in your row and instead of sticking your needle into the next stitch, just wrap the yarn around the needle like you would when you are making a knit stitch.

Step 2: Knit the next stitch like you normally would.

Here is the Video, In it, I do a yarn over then a knit stitch, then another Yarn Over than another Knit Stitch.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Knitting Needles

There are basically three different types of knitting needles, Straight, Circular, and Double Pointed Needles.
Straight needles are what most people think of when they think about knitting. They are sticks with a point on one end and a knob on the other end. These needles are used to make flat items, like blankets, scarfs, and shawls.

Circular needles, which are my favorite types of needles have two parts. There is a cord which is typically made of plastic. The other part is the needle part. This part is typically made of metal or aluminum and connected to the cord by a plastic piece that changes in diameter from the needle size to the smaller diameter of the cord. These needles can be used to make anything the straight needles can make and they can also be used to make tubes. Knitting in the round is a good way to make seamless sweaters, bags, and skirts. Another good thing about circular needles is that it seems like the weight of the knitted fabric is better distributed and there is less hand strain with these. There are also sets with interchangable needles. They come with most of the needle sizes and different lengths of cord. This is nice when you are trying to figure out what size needle to use to get the gauge of the pattern. Also, different lengths of cords enable the knitter to use the same needles to make a sleeve and the body of the sweater. The set I have was purchased at Michael's with a 1/2 off coupon. The one thing about these needles is that the needle part screws into the cord and sometimes the connection will get loose and the cord will seperate from the needle. There are other needle sets that have different ways of connecting, which I've heard isn't as likely to come undone during knititng. A company called Knit Picks has a set and there are other companies who make sets like this.

Double Pointed Needles, or DPNs as they are more commonly called are used for small things that are knit in the round. They are just sticks with points on each side. The most common uses for DPNs are socks and sleeves.

Knitting has been around for a long time, so there are different ways to measure the diameters of knitting needles. Needles are measured by at least three different systems, the US, the British and the metric. Always make sure that the needle size that a pattern calls for is the system that you think it is. The British system runs in the opposite direction of the US, so using a British Size 3 needle when the pattern called for a US size 3 would not work so well.
Knitting Needles also come in many different materials. The most common are wood/bamboo, metal/aluminum and plastic. I have found that the wood ones are good for yarns that are more slippery, like cotton. The metal ones are good for wool and things that may slide off of the needles.
What is your favorite kind of knitting needle? Have you tried the other interchangeable circular needle sets, if so, how did you like it?

Happy Knitting!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Last week and this week.

I thoroughly enjoyed my three day weekend. Thursday night we went to Spudly's Restaurant and saw the new Disney Movie WALL-E. We went to two Barbeque's on Independence Day. The rest of the weekend was spent cleaning the house. I'm feeling a lot better than I was last week. Which makes me really really happy!

This week I have some things planned for ya'll.
Tomorrow I have a discussion of knitting needles. The basics of what you should know when you are in the market for knitting needles.
Thursday will be a tutorial on how to do the yarn over, which is useful for increasing the number of stitches on a row and also very useful for lace knitting.
Friday is a Project Profile on a parrot I knitted. His name is El Gazaro. I will also talk about the book, World of Knitted Toys by Kath Dalmeny. This is the book that the pattern for the parrot came from.

I hope all of you have a great week. Here's a brief list of some upcoming events.
MidCity Art Market: July 26 and August 28th from 10am or 4pm at Palmer Park.
Morgan City Shrimp and Petroleum Festival August 28 through September 1 (Labor Day Weekend)
Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in Houston from October 18-19.

St. Pius X in New Orleans by the Lakefront is presenting the play "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat." The plays are July 18, 19, 24, 25 and 26 at 8pm. And a mantinee on July 20 at 2pm. I've been to a few of their plays and they are always very well done. If you are in the area and have some free time, you may want to check it out. It takes place at St. Piux X Gym which is at 6666 Spanish Fort Blvd. New Orleans, La.

The Movie WALL-E was cute. It was a little eerie because the first part of the movie doesn't have any talking. I think this isn't really a good movie for those with short attention spans. It has a couple of great messages, one is pretty much about what will happen if we don't Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. Another message of the movie is the importance of doing things for yourself and exercising.

Spudly's is a restaurant that specializes in Baked Potatoes. It is located at 2609 Harvard Ave. in Metairie. They cook the potatoes very well and top them with just about anything you could want in your potato. I had a potato topped with the traditional topping, and Patrick had one with seafood in it. Patrick's parents went with us and his mom had the traditional one like me and his dad had a shrimp topped potato. The menu has things other than potatoes too. One thing that I'm not sure if it was just a bad night for it, or if they are always like this is that the fried mushroom appetizer wasn't very good. We were really surprised that they could batter mushrooms that small. Other than that the restaurant and the food was very good. One other thing about the restaurant, it doesn't have the ambiance of some other restaurants, but I think the food more than makes up for the lack of atmosphere.

Friday, July 4, 2008

The Joys of Yarn

I really like yarn, if you ask my husband, I have way too much yarn. A while back, he gathered up all of my yarn from my favorite hiding spots around the house and counted all of the skeins he could find. He told me I had about eighty two skeins and he was sure that there were some unaccounted for. He really thought that was a good reason for me not to buy any more yarn for a while. I disagreed, but played along.

I enjoy shopping for yarn. There are so many possibilities in the isles of the yarn store. So many different colors, thicknesses and fibers. Some of my favorite kinds of yarn are made from Merino wool, Alpaca, Llama, bamboo and cotton. I've never had the pleasure of knitting with silk, but it seems like it would be a nice fiber to create something with. Acrylic and other man made yarns have come a long way since they were first produced. Some are silky, beautiful and have very nice drape. The most important aspect when shopping for yarn is to find a yarn that feels good on your fingers.

Here is a quick guide to the basics of Yarn Weight:

Yarns are for the most part classified according to their thicknesses/diameters. The thinnest yarns are called cobweb and are used to make very fine lace projects. Next is Fingering/sock yarn which is a little thicker and used to make things such as the obious socks and lacy things. Next is the Sport weight yarns, a lot of yarns used to make baby items are Sport weight. Sport and DK weights are very similar with DK (Double Knit) being a little thicker. Worsted Weight yarns are probably the most popular. These yarns aren't so thin that it takes forever to knit something, but they aren't so think that they make the wearer of the knitted item look extra bulky. Bulky weight yarns can be used to items such as blankets and scarfs. The major advantage to knitting with bulky weight yarns is that the project grows very quickly.

If you are looking for An inexpensive yarn that is reliably available in many craft stores, I would suggest Lion Brand Wool-Ease. This yarn comes in different yarn weights, pretty colors. Wool-Ease is very soft and machine washable. I've seen this yarn at stores such as Michael's, Hobby Lobby, Joann's Fabric, and Wal-mart. Wool-Ease is a blend of wool and acrylic and is very soft. This yarn comes in various weights. This is the yarn that was used in my previous videos of the tutorials.

I hope everyone had a happy Independence Day (Fourth of July) and please keep our troups in mind, especially those that are away from their families.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

The Purl Stitch

The next thing to learn in your journey to becoming a knitter is the purl stitch. The purl stitch is the one that looks like a bunch of bumps or --'s. Together, the knit stitch and the purl stitch yield unlimited possibilities. These two stitches can be combined to make many different patterns, garments, and accessories. It really amazes me just how much these two stitches can do when they get together. As a previous post stated, these directions are in the Eastern European Style.

Here is a step by step guide to the purl stitch. The video is below. As with the knit stitch, you'll need a cast on row or a row of knit and/or purls. When referring to the needle with all of the stitches already on it, I'll call it the populated needle and the other needle will be referred to as the empty needle.

Step 1. Hold the needles with your cast on/knitted/purled stitches from your previous row in your left hand. The empty needle on your right hand.

Step 2. Stick the empty needle through the front of the stitch closest to the pointy end of the populated needle.

Step 3. Wrap the yarn around the empty needle, like you did with the knit stitch.

Step 4. Pull the yarn through the stitch on the populated needle.

Step 5. Slip the stitch from the populated needle off of the populated needle and drop it. Now you have a stitch on the empty needle.

Repeat these steps until all of your stitches are on the needle that was initially empty.

Turn your work and switch the needles like you did with the knit stitch. The needle with the stitches will now be in your left hand and the empty one will be in your right hand. Repeat until you feel comfortable with the purl stitch.

One thing to keep in mind. If you purl every row, you will end up with the garter stitch. If you alternate knit rows and purl rows you'll end up with the stockinette stitch.

Here is the video: