Tip of the week: Knitting speed
Aug 10, 2021
One question I'm asked a lot is: "How do I knit fast?"
My top tip for getting through your knitting faster is NOT to try to knit really fast. What generally happens is that you can end up dropping stitches, splitting yarn or making other mistakes that mean over all your knitting takes longer.
Rather than thinking about being speedy, concentrate on finding an efficient knitting style. This is a way of knitting that lets you to get into a steady rhythm and requires only small movements to make each stitch. This way each stitch will take a small amount time.
First, work out what sort of needles you are most comfortable using. This could mean using long needles you can tuck under your arms. Or it could be working on circular needles (even for rows) because you. find it easier only to move the short tips.
There are various styles of knitting and it is worth trying out different methods to see what suits you - I'm going to contrate on two.
Many people say that “continental” style knitting (as in this UKHKA video), where you hold the yarn in your left hand and use the tip of the right needle to pull or “pick” it though each stitch is the fastest. This only requires a small movement so can be quite speedy.
However, if you are more comfortable holding the yarn in your right hand, learning to “flick” the yarn in the way forward. Knitters use their index finger to move the yarn round the needle without ever letting go of the right hand needle. This allows them to work at a steady rhythm with very little excess movement. I like this tutorial from VeryPink
Experimenting with techniques and practice will help you find the most efficient and comfortable way to knit for you. Once you find it, you will develop your natural knitting speed. And remember this is about enjoyment not racing.
If you need any advice or any other help with building your knitting skills or confidence check out my knitting therapy service.