Knitting is a craft that has been around for centuries, and it continues to be a popular hobby for many people today. Not only is it a relaxing and meditative activity, but it also allows you to create beautiful and practical items such as clothing, blankets, and accessories.
However, as with any skill, it takes time and practice to become proficient in knitting. One important technique in knitting is increasing, which allows you to add stitches to your work and shape your project. In this article, we will explore the different types of knitting, the steps to increase knitting, common mistakes to avoid, tips for increasing knitting, and more.
Types of knitting
Before we dive into increasing, it’s important to understand the different types of knitting. Some of the most popular types include:
Basic knitting: This is the most common type of knitting, where you simply knit every stitch across the row.
Lace knitting: This involves creating intricate patterns of holes and gaps in your knitting, often using yarnovers and decreases.
Fair Isle knitting: Also known as stranded knitting, this technique involves carrying two or more colors of yarn across the row and alternating between them to create patterns.
Aran knitting: This is a type of textured knitting that often involves cables, bobbles, and other raised stitches.
Steps to increase knitting
Now that you have a better understanding of the different types of knitting, let’s focus on increasing. Here are the steps you can follow:
Understanding increases: An increase is simply adding a stitch to your knitting. This can be done in various ways, such as knitting into the front and back of a stitch, or making a yarnover.
Choosing the right increase: There are many different types of increases, each with its own purpose and effect on your knitting. Some common ones include knit-front-and-back (KFB), make-one (M1), and yarnover (YO).
Working an increase stitch: Once you have chosen your increase, you will need to know how to work it. This may involve knitting or purling into the front or back of a stitch, or wrapping your yarn around your needle in a specific way.
Common mistakes to avoid while increasing knitting
As with any skill, it’s important to be aware of common mistakes that can hinder your progress. Here are some common mistakes to avoid while increasing knitting:
Not counting stitches: It’s important to keep track of your stitch count while increasing to ensure that you don’t end up with too many or too few stitches.
Increasing in the wrong direction: Make sure to follow the pattern and increase in the correct direction. Otherwise, your project may not turn out as intended.
Forgetting to slip stitches: If a pattern calls for slipping a stitch, make sure to do so before working the increase. Otherwise, your stitch count may be off.
Not checking gauge: Gauge refers to the number of stitches and rows per inch in your knitting. Make sure to check your gauge before starting your project to ensure that your increases (and other stitches) match the pattern.
Tips for increasing knitting
To improve your increasing skills, try incorporating these tips into your practice:
Using stitch markers: Place a stitch marker on the needle after each increase to help you keep track of where they are.
Keeping track of rows: Write down the number of rows you’ve completed and the number of increases you’ve made. This will help you keep track of your progress and ensure that your increases are consistent.
Keeping a knitting journal: Record your progress, thoughts, and observations in a journal. This can help you identify patterns in your work and track your progress over time.
Practicing on swatches: Swatches are small pieces of fabric that allow you to practice new stitches and techniques without ruining your project. Practice different types of increases on swatches to see how they affect your knitting.
Increasing knitting is an important technique that can add shape and dimension to your projects. By understanding the different types of knitting, following the steps to increase, avoiding common mistakes, and incorporating tips into your practice, you can improve your increasing skills and create beautiful, customized projects.
So don’t be afraid to experiment with different types of increases and keep practicing until you feel confident in your skills. With time and patience, you can become a master at increasing knitting.
What is the best type of increase for beginners?
The knit-front-and-back (KFB) increase is a great option for beginners, as it’s easy to learn and creates a subtle increase.
How do I increase in a pattern without disrupting the design?
When increasing in a pattern, make sure to follow the instructions carefully and place your increases in a way that complements the design. You may need to adjust the placement of your increases to ensure that they don’t disrupt the pattern.
What should I do if I lose track of my stitch count while increasing?
If you lose track of your stitch count, try counting the stitches in each row to identify where you may have made a mistake. You can also use stitch markers to help you keep track of where your increases are.
Can I increase using any stitch?
There are many different types of increases, each with its own purpose and effect on your knitting. However, some stitches are better suited for increasing than others. Make sure to choose a stitch that complements your pattern and creates the desired effect.
How do I know how many stitches to increase?
The pattern you’re following should indicate how many stitches to increase and when to make them. Make sure to read the pattern carefully and follow the instructions closely to ensure that your increases are in the right place.