30DOC: New Skills

With not much time left in June, I’m just going to pick some topics from this series and do them as I feel inclined.

Life itself is a learning experience and I believe opportunities to develop new skills — whether it’s personally, professionally or creatively — come to us everyday.

Would it surprise you if I said the person who knitted:


as recently as yesterday?

Although I know I knit them, they don’t even look like they both came from the same hand, especially in the order that they did come.  This, however is not an exaggeration or a trick.  I really did knit both pieces — doing the Feather and Fan lace sample a few months after I learned to knit and the green — I don’t know what you’d call that — yesterday.  What does all this have to do with learning a new skill?  Let me tell you.  🙂

If you’ve been on this blog long enough, you’ll hear me say often — I’m a slow knitter.  I’m learned to throw and my throwing method is the slower of the two alternatives.  That is, I release my right hand needle, move the yarn over the left needle with my hand (instead of flicking with my index finger) in order to create stitches.  

I finish stuff but not fast enough or let me say — not as fast as I’d like to.   To that end, I’ve decided to learn the continental method of knitting.  

The hand movements are precise and more efficient, resulting in faster knitting.   The purl stitch looks crazy, but I even tried that last night. 😀  If you look at the green swatch closely, between all the dropped and wrecked stitches, you can see a little teeny tiny bit of stockinette stitch peeping out in the middle of the sample.

Now some might say “what’s the big deal?  You can knit already, why go through this?  They might be right, but I want to do this for me.  I put it on the list of things I wanted to complete in knitting this year and I think by the end of summer’s dog days, I should have a rhythm and be able to do it faster, having beautifully finished pieces instead of a replica of that green monster above.  😀

That said, what are you?  Are you a thrower or a picker?

5 thoughts on “30DOC: New Skills

  1. autumngeisha June 23, 2012 / 9:16 pm

    I am a thrower, too. I know how to knit continental style and even taught my niece that method, but it just does not come natural to me. After a few frustrated rows, I revert back to my awkward style. Over the years, I have been able to build up a bit of speed but have never timed myself. Good luck with it! You should take a before and after video and post it.

    • Nicky June 24, 2012 / 8:30 am

      Honestly this is where I go back and forth. I know if I commit to learning continental, I can go faster, but if I continue to throw, that too will enable me to build up speed eventually. I’m not exactly sure why I feel so committed to learning continental. I guess it’s my impatience at wanting to go faster RIGHT NOW. 😀

      • Nicky June 24, 2012 / 8:31 am

        p.s. I’m so super shy, I don’t know if I have it in me for a video; I’ll think about it though. :blush:

  2. Renee June 23, 2012 / 3:47 am

    I knit continental, as I found it easier to learn as I crocheted first. I can do English, but I find it incredibly frustrating how much slower it is.

    • Nicky June 23, 2012 / 9:00 am

      That’s how I feel now about the English method. I’m just sooooooooooooooooooo slow using it. Even though I’m just learning continental, it feels better. Easier than the last time I tried to learn it.

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