Friday, November 28, 2008

I think I have discovered the root to all of my knitting problems: my crochet background.

For the two years that I've been both a crocheter and knitter (although I have known how to knit a little longer than two years), I've been plagued by twisted stitches. I blamed it on my purls (which were to blame once). Then, I blamed it on knitting through the back loop (which led to a brief flirtation with combination knitting). And now, I think I know the new culprit: I twirl my yarn in a way more befitting my crochet background.

The reason for the sucky knitted twists (which I've turned into a stylistic element in my dad's scarf) is because I have been crocheting for 20 years now, and that's enough time to get stuck in one's ways. I've heard people complain about everything from how one holds a hook (knife or pencil) to grabbing or throwing the yarn. And none of these issues ever plagued my crochet. I generally throw the yarn instead of grabbing the yarn with the hook, but then I'm all about "grabbing" if I have to do a chain of more than three. And even though the act of throwing yarn in crochet is similar to the act of grabbing yarn in knitting, there's a nuance that no one ever bothered to tell me about. Nuances create or eliminate twists.

And so now, I'm wondering how I should proceed. I can't become an English-style knitter (I tried back when I learned and created my own flawed version of continental). I am commonly too lazy to be a combination knitter (I'd have to remember to ssk when patterns say to k2tog, and vice versa with some rearranging stitches), plus I'm wondering if combination can be done effectively in the round or if we just live with twists if there are no purls to right a twist. And then, I am too stubborn in my crochet methods to likely be very good at changing a similar method just for my knitting. So, I'm lost and looking for suggestions.

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