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Beginner’s guide to knitting: a giveaway!

becoming art
Becoming Art’s Suave in Sandalwood

When you learn how to knit, you’re learning an entirely new skill set, including language, culture and attitude.

Some folks give up early in the process. “I just did’t ‘get’ it.”

Others muddle along and stick with the basics, because those are pretty easy to learn.

Others yet really dig in, voraciously learning everything possible about their new craft. And become experienced knitters!

One of the beauties of knitting is that you’re never to old to learn to knit, or to expand your knitting skills.

One of the things I really love about knitting is that I’m never done learning. There is always a new technique or skill or tradition to play with.

I’ll let you in on a secret: Every single experienced knitter had to learn how to knit.


Every one of your knitting heroes and heroines had to learn how to knit – no one is born with needles in hand, knitting. Honest!

Whether you’ve knit all your life or are fairly new to it or have been wanting to learn or somewhere in between … you have the absolute potential to knit on the same level as your favorite super star knitters.

Feeling intimidated by the latest Twist Collective? No need to be, because YOU can learn how to knit every gorgeous piece in the latest edition.

Trust me, if I was able to learn to do this, so can you. 🙂


As I’m continuing the overhaul of my blog, I want to create a resource for you and your knitting questions and problems. A “beginner’s guide to knitting,” perhaps. I would LOVE to know what you’re dying to know.

And to make it more fun, I’m going to give away a few prizes!

The #1 prize will be a copy of Knit and Wrap, the collection of 25 collars, cowls and capelets that includes my Flirt cowl knitting pattern (it’s a great collection – gorgeous knits!)!

#2 prize will be two knitting patterns of your choice from Phydeaux Designs.

#3 prize will be one knitting pattern of your choice from Phydeaux Designs.

To enter:

  1. Let me know what you’re dying to learn about knitting in the comments.
  2. You can enter once a day (leave a new comment with a new question each day).
  3. Bonus entries! (a) “follow” my blog (see the “follower” box in the left column) and/or (b) subscribe to my mailing list.

I want lots and lots of questions to read through! Enter by Thursday Sept. 30th, 9pm PST. I’ll announce winners the first weekend of October (my favorite month!).

{ 24 comments… add one }
  • Kekumukula September 20, 2010, 5:35 PM

    Is knitting graph paper different from graph paper you use for math in school?

  • Sandy September 20, 2010, 7:09 PM

    Love your work! What is the best way to start learning types of yarn and how to pick the right type of yarn for patterns?

  • Edda Pyle September 20, 2010, 8:24 PM

    How to "block" the finished project- exactly what does it mean and how is it done?

  • OrangeMama September 20, 2010, 9:44 PM

    I am a follower. I just stared to learn knitting, so I'd love to see your guide!

  • Orion Designs September 21, 2010, 3:43 PM

    Hi Brenda! I'm a very basic knitter — mostly scarves, hats and a few simple sweaters so far. I've been following your blog for a while now.

    I would love to know what weight of yarn is best for which projects. And, how do you know what weight each yarn is?? If a pattern says to use dk yarn, how do I know if my yarn is actually dk, without going to the yarn store and asking the experts??

  • Brenda September 22, 2010, 3:09 AM

    These are all such great questions and points! Thank you all!

  • cara September 23, 2010, 6:28 PM

    hm, well i'm not a beginner anymore, but I am curious as to what you are giving away 🙂

    my question…. hm, well I suppose really my only quandary would be for designing. I sometimes get stuck in my designs simply because I don't know enough of certain techniques or maybe I need a tip or idea on how I could make my styles fit better.
    that is really my only stumbling block in knitting these days. 🙂

  • Kekumukula September 24, 2010, 12:20 AM

    What book is the best to buy for beginning designers?

  • OrangeMama September 24, 2010, 2:23 AM

    What kind of yarn do you personally prefer to work with? What yarn qualities are important to you? What is the maximum amount of money are you to spend on 100g skein? and what kind of skein would it be?

  • Kekumukula September 24, 2010, 6:54 PM

    There are so many knitting mags out there. Which one do you think gives a knitter the best bang for her buck?

  • alkira September 24, 2010, 7:45 PM

    there is a new indicator for yarn gauge, like #1, #2, #3,… in stead of gauge 3.5, 4, … To me, it's confusing. Which one you'd rather stick with? And if the yarn label says #2, how do I convert it to gauge number?

  • LJ September 25, 2010, 3:18 AM

    I really want to learn about working with color

  • Kekumukula September 25, 2010, 4:18 PM

    I always war between choosing a superwash yarn or a handwash yarn for a project that's a gift. Should I choose a yarn b/c I like it and feel it's the best fit for the project or should I think about the gift recipient's lifestyle?

  • Marianne September 25, 2010, 7:23 PM

    I second a tutorial about color, especially discussing 'traditional' color combos for fairisle etc

  • OrangeMama September 25, 2010, 11:08 PM

    What kind of projects would you recommend for beginners to learn new skills?

  • Amy September 26, 2010, 12:37 AM

    I would love a tutorial on provisional cast ons.

  • Amy September 26, 2010, 12:37 AM

    I am following on GFC

  • Amy September 26, 2010, 4:14 PM

    How about turning the heal on socks?

  • YarnSnob September 26, 2010, 11:15 PM

    I'd love to learn more about intarsia, working with more than two yarns. I've done a couple of fairisle projects working with two coloured yarns, but when it comes to working with more than two, it frightens the life out of me!

    I also love to know how to fix a cable when I've gone wrong.

  • OrangeMama September 27, 2010, 12:03 AM

    I'm interested in yarn options. I have seen several book written specifically about knitting with handspun. I am wondering what the difference is? What should one be ready for with handspun, what are pros and cons with both kinds?

  • Kekumukula September 27, 2010, 2:49 AM

    Where do you find inspiration and how do you go about bringing it to life?

  • Camille September 29, 2010, 4:32 PM

    I just started spinning and really could use some pointers on substituting handspun for commercial yarn. Do you simply use gauge swatches and match the gauge or are there some other hints/rules you follow when using handspun? Can you successfully combine handspun and commercial yarns in the same project or is that a recipe for disaster?

  • Camille September 29, 2010, 4:35 PM

    One more question: I always use a long tail cast on (because that's the one I know!) I've heard of several other types. Are some types of cast-on's better for certain situations or is it all personal preference?

  • Kekumukula September 29, 2010, 5:15 PM

    For intarsia, how long of a yarn piece do you recommend to cut for the "painted picture" parts? I have yet to try it as the thought of all the ends make me dizzy. Is there a way to weave in ends as one goes?

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