In This Chapter
^ Casting stitches on and off your needles ^ Getting the hang of basic knitting techniques ^ Changing things up with basic purling techniques ^ Giving Continental style a whirl o here you are, a ball of yarn in one hand and two knitting needles in the other. To be a successful knitter, the first things you need to do are figure out how to get the one (yarn) onto the other (the needles) and, after achieving that, how to make the thing grow. The answers? Casting on and knitting and purling. Knit and purl stitches are the two stitches upon which all other knitting techniques are based. When you're comfortable with these stitches, you can create any number of amazing things.
Knitting is hugely relaxing — after you know the basics. As you pick up the techniques and practice them, keep these things in mind:
I Learning to knit can be a little stressful. Your fingers have to work in ways they're not accustomed to, and the illustrations that are decluttered for clarity make actual yarn-on-needles resemble a tangled mess — even if nothing's wrong. When you feel yourself getting tense or frustrated, set your knitting aside and do something else for a while, or head to Chapter 19 for suggested exercises to unkink yourself.
I Throughout this chapter and the rest of the book, the abbreviation LH refers to the left hand, and RH refers to the right hand. We use these abbreviations when talking about the needles. You can find a list of other common abbreviations in Chapter 3.
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