Whether you are a knitter with years of experience under your belt or a beginner about to start your first project, going back to the basics is always a good idea.
Revisiting the fundamentals of knitting can help you become a better knitter.
Not sure why your knitting is uneven, too tight or too loose? Have no idea at which point you should be joining new yarn into a row? We got your back.
Take a look at our 10 tips below to get your knitting to a whole new level of beautiful.
1. Choose good quality yarn
It seems like a no-brainer but you would be surprised how many knitters skip this step. Choosing good quality yarn for your project is just like choosing quality clothing for your closet - the better the material you are working with, the better the end result.
Your yarn will last longer, be more durable and serve you for many moons, making your knitting simply irresistible.
2. Pick the right yarn for your project
Knowing the right yarn to choose for your chunky knitting project is one of the most important steps to getting a finished product you will love.
Have a pet at home who loves to chew on your shoes, cords and anything in the way? Making a pet bed out of Merino wool might not be the best choice. Opt for a more durable tube yarn, felted Merino or chenille.
Want to make a blanket that you can take camping? Skip the delicate yarns and stick with sturdy, light and portable chenille that will make your outdoors trip a success.
3. Maintain equal tension
A lot of new knitters tend to knit very tightly, using more yarn in the process. Practicing relaxing your stitches will help with this in a big way.
Try maintaining the same tension throughout your knitting - don't start too tight and loosen up in the middle - your knitting will be warped as a result.
Watch your knitting for equal tension and your project will turn out a consistent size and quality.
4. Make your stitches the same size
This one goes well with the above-mentioned tip on tension.
Just as important is maintaining the same stitch size to ensure that you don't use more yarn than you need to and that your blanket ends up the right size to cover your queen bed.
Remember our tip for making a Merino blanket from the last blog post: your stitch needs to ideally be 3-4 inches vertically in order to create a blanket of the correct size.
5. Check your knitting
We know how easy it is to get carried away into the warm and welcoming world of knitting and forget all about the outside world. One of knitting's best health benefits is its similarity to meditation and zen-like practices that put you in the 'zone'.
But occasionally stepping out of the zone to check your work is crucial - it will help you prevent making mistakes and having to unravel your knitting and start over.
6. Finish your row
Life gets hectic, we know. Your phone is ringing and the mailman is here while your dog is barking its head off in excitement. You are about to drop your knitting to go answer the door. But wait! Have you finished your row?
The benefits of finishing your row before putting down your knitting are many. If you are working on a complicated pattern, it's so easy to forget where you were in your row and mess up your stitches. Your tension can change the next time you pick it up and end up in an uneven row. You might lose sight of any stitches you tried to count.
So before you do anything else - finish that row.
7. Add new yarn at the beginning of a new row
The best place to add new yarn or 'join' your yarn is at the beginning of a new row or at the end of an existing one. Avoid the middle to ensure that your knitting doesn't have funky bumps or unevenness that will be obvious.
It's easier to hide these joints if they are on the sides of your knitting instead of in the middle.
Watch our videos on how to connect Merino wool and chenille yarn
8. Practice, practice, practice
Need we say more? Practice makes perfect.
The more you knit, the better your knitting will become. No one is born with an innate ability to knit, 99% of any success comes from practice and dedication.
But the great news is that knitting is engaging and fun, so practice is a lot more pleasant than, say, training for a marathon.
9. Knit with friends or in a community
Knitting has been known as a community activity for a while. You've heard of knit-a-thons and charity fundraisers involving many a knitter.
Feeling stuck or lonely in your knitting? Reach out to a friend and have them come over to keep you company.
Or post in our Knitting Club on Facebook for advice from fellow knitters or just to share what you made.
10. Be patient
We know it can get frustrating at times when you keep trying and something is simply not working for you, be it that one stitch that you can't seem to get or the whole project feels like it's falling apart.
Take a break and step away from your knitting. Go on a walk, do some yoga or just listen to some relaxing music. Then revisit your project and see if you want to continue, start over or start something new.
But be patient with yourself. Everything worthwhile takes time. Even if it takes you ten tries, the eleventh will be a success. You got this - we believe in you!