It’s a curious thing how did other people start with knitting. Perhaps it’s because of their grandmas. Or it’s just for variety where people want to try something new and add a new skill to their arsenal. Whichever is the case, there’s no going back and knitting is now a part of their daily lives.
Which types of people knitting usually attract?
Knitting seems like a hobby for introverts. After all, this activity requires lots of “alone time.” People also like the quiet and calm nature of the hobby. It’s like a get-away activity from the noises and modern living. These things have likely played a part why people started knitting.
Perhaps they started with the basic kits (with needles, yarn and basic patterns such as socks and beanies). Even completing a baby sock could really be fulfilling. The immediate sense of accomplishment (plus the stress reliever) hooked them in and “compelled” them to knit more and upgrade their skills.
There’s a learning curve before anyone can knit a full adult sweater or do the knitting motions in an automatic manner with minimal mistakes. But the challenge might have fuelled the beginners to learn more about the craft. They then start tackling more complex projects and trying a bunch of various patterns and yarns.
Aside from the introverts (or just those who prefer quiet moments most of the time), extroverted people also get into knitting to take a break from their usual activities. After all, most of us still require some alone time to relax and rejuvenate and extroverts are no exception.
Thankfully, knitting doesn’t demand anyone’s full time. You can do it on a weekend or every night. You can also do it only on autumn or winter season. It’s just like any other kind of hobby. You do it on your free time and there’s not much pressure whether you do it or not. But for beginners, it’s highly recommended to do it daily until it becomes semi-automatic to their nature. Practicing daily is still the best way to gain muscle memory on knitting and overcome the initial steep learning curve. After all, you have to make your hands work together with a high level of coordination. You can only gain this level of skill if you practice daily especially at the beginning.
Project-oriented or process-oriented?
People either better enjoy the journey or the outcome (it’s possible to enjoy both though). For instance, some people are actually more focused on the experience of knitting, rather than the finished project itself. It’s one of the great things about knitting. People can enjoy the process or the completed project (or both).
For beginners or anyone just trying the hobby, the immediate outcome or reward could further pull them into learning more and completing more projects. As they gain the muscle memory (and after they’ve overcome the learning curve), they could derive more enjoyment from the hobby. The experience then becomes more enjoyable and the hobbyist could become process-oriented.
Some people though take another path by enjoying the project-oriented approach. They derive more pleasure from completing one project after the next. You will be surprised at how much they accomplish in a given week. They could have completed at least 10 different patterns and projects in one or two weeks (yes, this is possible, although some have to be small projects).
Whichever is the case, it’s possible to get the best of both worlds by enjoying the two approaches. You can derive pleasure from the knitting motions as well as feel a high sense of accomplishment every time you complete a project. After all, the experience itself could be relaxing and therapeutic while the outcome provides a different level of satisfaction and accomplishment. In either case, beginners might be driven first by the outcome and then enjoy the process later.
How beginners should start?
Knitting is a 3-dimensional activity (well, you do this in the real world), which is why it’s best to learn it by attending a class or having someone to teach or mentor you. That’s also one of the main reasons why many people learned the hobby from their grandmas.
It’s really hard to learn it by following online instructions (whether text or video format). It’s a 2-dimensional approach which could be hard to grasp. Also, there’s no one around telling you what you’re doing wrong. It’s a step-by-step process and anything could go wrong (from how to hold the needles and perform certain stitches). There will be no feedback which makes learning more difficult.
Attending a class or having a mentor also provides beginners with clear guidance on which supplies to buy (and where to purchase quality needles and yarns). Which yarns are best for a particular type of project? What are the pros and cons of buying bulky yarns? The instructor or mentor could provide you with the answers to those questions. They can also provide you with the best practices and teach you how to avoid newbie mistakes.
This approach could make your learning process much faster and more efficient. After all, this is a type of craft where apprenticeship works best. You learn the process of knitting in real time while also receiving valuable feedback. As feedback comes in, you’ll be able to avoid mistakes and improve on your craft. This becomes a positive loop that will fuel your continuous improvement. As a result, you can become more productive and enjoy the process more because of mastery and more accomplishments.
During the early periods of learning, it’s highly recommended that beginners tackle small and simple projects. This way they can realise results much faster which can then further encourage them in learning the hobby. Beginners can knit a pair of socks within a day. Once they immediately see the initial success, they would become more motivated to continue on with the lessons and practice.
How did other people start with knitting (and continue loving it)
Knitting is not exclusively for the old ladies anymore. Even kids now try their hands on creating a beanie by using needles and yarn. Also, it’s never too late to learn (or master) knitting because you can always find knitting classes nearby (or hire someone to be your mentor). If you’re already an intermediate hobbyist, you can purchase more patterns so you could complete more complex and interesting projects. Aside from further honing your skill, those additional projects will also provide a sense of accomplishment.
Back then the only way to learn knitting is through apprenticeship or having a mentor to personally guide the learner. It’s still the best approach today because knitting would seem to require intricate movements. Also, there’s a steep learning curve and the wrong habits might get stuck with you. It’s highly recommended that you learn the movements and techniques properly because old habits are difficult to unlearn.
A good advice still is to start small and tackle simple projects. It could be a beanie, socks or a small scarf. The quick initial accomplishment could then motivate you further. This approach works whether you’re learning in a class or from your grandma.
Sometimes knitting could feel a bit lonely especially if you’re doing it for extended periods of time every day. During these times you should take a break (take it easy and slow for a while). You can always come back to knitting whenever you want to. You can also try group knitting sessions so you can meet more people who share the same passion on knitting. Aside from meeting more people, you can also add more life to your hobby because surely you’ll get inspiration from fellow hobbyists.
But first, try to gain the necessary muscle memory so your movements become semi-automatic. This way, each project would appear less intimidating because you have fewer things to worry about. You’ll be confident that you can tackle each project with ease (well, each project presents new lessons and challenges). Once you’ve dedicated the initial time in gaining muscle memory, the rest of the journey becomes easier and more exciting.
It’s also recommended to have good supplies to further encourage you with the hobby (and make knitting more enjoyable as well). Here at The Aussie Knitting Co we can provide you with high-quality yarns and needles to make knitting as smooth as possible for you.
We also have a wide variety of patterns (from simple to complex, including clothes and accessories) so you can continuously create outstanding crafts. You can contact us today if you have questions on how to order online and about the delivery times so you can quickly get started with the hobby (or just continue practicing the craft).