In all my years of knitting (over 50 now, egad!), I have taught countless people how to knit.
The most delightful and memorable experience took place, once upon a time, sitting cross legged with a 5-year-old on my lap and my arms wrapped around her, guiding her dimpled hands and fingers to wrap the yarn around the little red and blue needles. This is not the practical way to teach most students.
AWWWW! Nell’s daughter (and MDK Field Guide Sample Knitter) Haley chalkley learning to finger knit at 5
Invitation to Knit
As I leafed through the clearly-written and cleverly-illustrated pages of my fresh copy of Skill Set: Beginning Knitting, I recalled a recent text exchange with my neighbor …
Because K already knew how to crochet (hook in her right hand, yarn in her left), she was a natural for the continental method of knitting. We practiced a swatch of garter stitch on straight needles.
It was such a pleasure to be teaching—in person—again!
When we were ready for Lesson 4, we took a trip to our local yarn shop, Baa Baa Sheep, where I work and teach. K chose a clear yellow wool to knit her hat. Knitting in the round is a great first step on the road to hand knit socks!
She did not want a rolled brim on her hat, so I had her begin on straight needles and knit an inch and a half of flat garter stitch for the band. This will leave a small seam to join (Lesson 7!), but since she’ll need to weave in the cast on tail, a seam is a good way to work it into the piece.
After completing the band, she then knit the stitches onto her 16″ circular needle to join for working in the round.
K’s enthusiasm for her new skill is only curbed by her full-time job, and caring for her wonderful vegetable garden and two beloved pets.
The truth is that she will complete this hat long before the evening temps drop here in the steamy southeast.
And Skill Set and I (and Daisy girl pictured below) will be here to guide her through knitting her first (of many!) pairs of socks.