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Knitting Tips and Tricks Make Knitting Fun


Knitting tips and tricks can be so helpful as you learn how to knit. And by knowing a few tricks of the trade it can turn a so-so knitting project into a fun knitting experience making it easier and quicker. It can even look better too.

I created two pages of knitting tips, this one and a page on tips for knitting beginners.  Rather than sifting through the tips on this page, I wanted a dedicated page for new knitters as well.

I just wanted to give you some extra knitting help as you begin knitting your first few rows.

1. One Of The Best Knitting Tips-Long Tail Cast On Without Estimating Yarn Tail

This is one of my favourite knitting tips and I use it a lot. The long tail cast on is a great cast on.  I like the nice clean stretchy edge it creates and how it makes my knitting look. But it can be a bit of a hassle figuring out the yarn tail length you’re going to need.

How many of you have needed to cast on a lot of stitches only to find that you ran out of yarn before you were done?  And the next time you tried casting on you over-compensated and had three extra feet of yarn left?

Yup I’ve been there a lot!

Well not anymore, check this out. Oh but hang on. If you’re a new knitter you will need to check out the original version of the long tail cast on so that you have the full step-by-step instructions. Then you can come back here and see this terrific knitting tip.  Don’t worry I’ll wait for you…

Step 1  What you need to do is use two balls of yarn or one ball using both ends.  Now tie both ends together into a slip knot.  Then use both ends just like using one long end the other way.

Note: When you’re counting stitches make sure not to add the slip knot as a stitch. You won’t be using it

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Step 2  When you have all the stitches you need, cut one yarn end so that now you are using just one ball of yarn.

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 Step 3  Now you can knit your row until you come to the slip knot and stop.
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 Step 4  Remove the needle from the slip knot and…. carry on knitting.
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Isn’t that great?  I sure like it, especially when I am casting on two or three hundred stitches.  And there’s no wasted yarn.

2.  The Biggest of All Knitting Tips

Knitting gauge may not seem very important to you. But it’s one of the most important knitting tips and also the secret to knitting success. I can’t stress enough how much easier knitting will become when you learn and understand about knitting gauge. It truly is that important and honestly when you get into the habit it will become second nature. It really will.

3.  When You are Knitting a Gauge Swatch…

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To make sure you don’t forget what size needle you used for the swatch you made, just make some eyelets for the size needle you used. An eyelet is made by doing a yarn over and then a K2tog.

Little knitting tips reminder: To get less stitches per inch use larger needles and to get more stitches per inch use smaller needles.

4.  Clean Stripes When Working Ribbing

This is a perfect gem of knitting tips and it’s so easy. Have you ever noticed when you change colors in ribbing stitches the little purl stitches poke through on the right side making it look….well kind of messy and not crisp and clean? I did too and I didn’t like it much…

knitting tipsAdd a new color and just knit the whole row with the new color (it won’t mess up the rib stitches at all) and then continue on with your ribbing.  Now it’s nice and clean and crisp.
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5.  When You Bind Off Knitting…

Do you ever find that you bind off stitches too tightly?  And do you find that the last stitch on the bind off row is really loose and messy?  Me too.

But I have ways to clean up that bind off row once and for all and I even made a page about it to help you too. To check out my bind of knitting tips Click here

6.  Knitting Cables Without a Cable Needle.  Oh My..

Sound scary? 

Maybe, but when I discovered that there was a way to cable stitches without using the cable needle it was a total epiphany for me.  Suddenly knitting cables wasn’t so difficult anymore.  You may feel the same way.  Have a look and see how to knit cables without a cable needle.  I’d love to know what you think.

7.  SSK – Slip Slip Knit – Improved?

The SSK decrease has always seemed, well let’s just say not as neat as his cousin the K2tog decrease.  Try this little knitting trick and see if you like it better.

The regular ssk: slip as if to knit, slip as if to knit. Then place left needle in front of those two stitches and knit them together.

Try it this way:  slip as if to knit, slip as if to purl. Place left needle in front of those two stitches and knit them together.

Some people like it better and some people don’t really notice too much of a difference.  What do you think?

8. Knitting Mistakes – Simple Techniques to Help You Fix Them

Everyone makes knitting mistakes.  It’s a fact of life but these simple knitting tips and techniques will show you how to fix those mistakes with confidence.  You’ll be up and knitting in no time.

Here’s a list of common techniques for fixing mistakes:

Twisted Stitches   What is a twisted stitch?

Tinking   Great knitting technique for undoing stitches one at a time.

Dropped Stitches  Did a stitch slip off your needle? Here’s an easy fix.

9.  Circular Needles Are Great Even When You Knit Flat

I swear there’s a special place all single straight needles go because no sooner do I put my knitting down and one needle goes missing somewhere, sometimes under the couch, sometimes tucked inside it and sometimes who knows…

And the other thing is, I used to pass up knitting projects because straight knitting needles weren’t long enough to hold all the stitches. It was around that time I started to consider circular knitting needles a little more.

Finally I decided to do what I thought was a drastic move at the time. You see I had been using straight needles for more than 25 years and I was a die hard fan of them. But I did it and bought a pair of circular needles and knit flat projects with them. It took awhile for me to warm up to them too. But it also started feeling more comfortable when I knit. And my problem of losing needles stopped. Eventually it was the end of my straight needle knitting and the start of a new found love for circular knitting needles!

And there are many more good reasons to give them a try:

One of my favourite reasons as I mentioned above is that circular needles hold a lot of stitches so when you want to knit a blanket like I am right now, my circulars are wonderful. They also carry the weight of a heavy knitting project much more easily which means less wrist pain. You see the weight isn’t on one needle, it’s evenly distributed along the cord and actually your project will rest in your lap so you can knit along quickly and easily.

Circular needles are way more portable. With the shorter needle tips and flexible cable you can fold up your knitting and stick it into your knitting bag so easily.

You will be less likely to drop stitches on a circular. When you finish knitting just push the sides of your work into the middle of the cable and your stitches won’t fall off the ends.

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2 thoughts on “Knitting Tips and Tricks Make Knitting Fun


    1. Hi Dawn. Unfortunately I don’t have an easy solution for turning your work when your knitting gets heavy. I’m working on a temperature blanket right now and sometimes I can turn my work without moving the blanket much but basically there isn’t much you can do about that. 🙂

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