Knitting at Knit Luck
Knit Luck is here for the knitting. All the knitting. All the tools, yarns, books, people, designers, places. We believe that knitting isn't just a hobby, but a way of life, and not just a way of life, but a way of making life better. Knit Luck's job is to celebrate knitting, knitters, knitting pattern designers, and of course the yarn and needles that make our hobby so much fun.
In this section you can read my Learn to Knit story and the learn-to-knit stories of others.
Or you can head over to the Learn-to-Knit section and actually start knitting yourself.
You can check out what I've been knitting over the years.
You can also learn about starting your own knitting blog.
What is Knitting Anyway?
Knitting is a method of creating fabric via a series of interconnecting loops. The resulting fabric size depends on the gauge of the yarn and needles used. A very thick yarn (usually called chunky) with large needles will result in a very thick knit. Alternatively, very thin knitting needles and a thin gauge yarn (often referred to as lace weight or fingering) results in a very fine lightweight knit. Knitted fabric can be created by using two needles, a knitting loom or even with knitting machines. The focus here at Knit Luck is handknitting with needles.
How is Knitting Different From Crochet?
Knitting and crochet are both very different methods of creating a fabric using string. Knitting uses two sticks with tapered ends while crochet employs a hook. Knitting is a series of unsecured loops which need to live on a needle until the piece of knitting is bound off. These knitted loops have a v-like shape similar to the look of a plaited braid. Meanwhile, crochet is a series of interconnected finished knots that can be worked one at a time without having to be bound off. In knitting you can work flat or in the round, but when you work in the round you need to keep all of your stitches on multiple double pointed needles, while in crochet you can connect your crochet like a spiral and crochet around and around to make little bowls, hats and even bags, all without worrying about losing stitches.
In knitting you rarely hold the knitted fabric because the stitches all live on the needles, but in crochet you hold the fabric in one hand and a hook in the other so that you can have leverage when inserting the hook into the fabric, winding the yarn around the hook and pulling it through the fabric. The only time you hold the fabric when knitting is when you're picking up stitches, the action of which is very similar to crochet.
Both skills have their benefits and it's very common to both knit and crochet on a single project. Crocheted edges can finish a beautiful piece of knitting. That said, the resulting fabric looks very different from one another.
Here are some other resources to learn more about the differences between knitting and crochet:
History of Knitting: Who Were the First Knitters?
Much has been written about the history of knitting. Julie Theaker has written an amazing treatise for knittythat explains how knitting likely came over trade routes from the middle east possibly 1200 years ago. She give excellent rationales for her historical argumenst and even reveals some controversies among academics. I've only given you the briefest of summaries. Julie Theaker's work is well worth reading and gives you a great appreciation for the craft.
Wikipedia also has some information on knitting's history and what's great about it is that it's broken down by eras and geography. However it does miss the mark in detailing knitting's origins and sticks to a very European-centric perspective.
The Society of Creative Anachronism, which is an organization that celebrates medieval re-enactments in accurate historical detail has a wonderful document about the medieval history of knitting, including some great photos, resources and even some knitting pattern ideas.
Charity Naeve Johnson has written a university assignment on the history of knitting and provides even more details to deepen your knitting history knowledge.
The Virginia and Albert Museumhas a brief article about the history of knitting among the British Isles.
How to Learn to Knit
I'm a big proponent of people learning how to knit. I believe it to be one of the best New Year's Resolutions. If you want to bring some peace and creativity into your life, teach yourself how to knit. We have a whole section on that here. There are many ways to learn how to knit, but here are the major bullet points: