Thursday, June 22, 2017

Summer Knitting Classes

Hey folks! June is coming to a close, and the first half of my summer knitting classes are wrapping up.  We have had SO much fun. I have taught 14 students this month, and it has been amazing to watch them bloom. I love how they all start by picking up their cast on needle, and looking at it like it fell from the sky, and end up knitting at super speed on their finished hats.  It is so rewarding to hear them talk about all the things they want to knit.


I start out doing a lot of teaching, and by the end, I can't get a word in edgewise.  :)  I teach them how to do the knit stitch using the rhyme from Annie and the Swiss Cheese Scarf:

In through the front door,
Once around the back,
Peek through the window,
And off jumps Jack.

I show them all the ways yarn looks when you buy it at the store, and how to work with it when you get it home.  We wind up a skein on my swift and ball winder, and everyone gets a turn spinning the handle. I show them circular needles, straights and double points, and we talk about all the materials these needles can be made of. We pass around different types of needles to feel the difference in weight between carbon fiber and aluminum, and the slickness difference between polished wood and bamboo.

We talk about fiber content, and pass around a rustic wool that feels scratchy in your hand but soft on your neck. And baby alpaca which feels like a cloud in your hand but feels itchy on your neck! (Yes - we rub all these things on our necks. We probably look a little nutty, but how else will you know if the fiber is better for mittens or a cowl?!)

I go through my tool bag and teach them what all the tools are called and how to use them. To teach about the importance of gauge, I hold up two garter stitch rectangles of very different sizes and densities, knit with the same yarn and the same number of stitches, one on size 1 needles and one on size 15 needles.  (This visual is especially helpful for kids who want to knit super tight. It helps them see that they don't need to - they can just use different sized needles.)

And we end the week by blocking something. I demonstrate this on Thursday so they can see the finished product on Friday. By this time, though, they are chatty and comfortable and talking about what they are going to make next.

Here are a few shots from Day 2  (posted with permission) of these inspiring young ones!







2 comments :

  1. I wish I had someone to teach me like you!! Love how you thorough you are! I still don't totally understand fiber content!!

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    1. I wish you could come over and knit, too! That would be so fun! :)

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