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CindyLee
Chatty Knitter

119 Posts

Posted - 09/20/2006 :  1:29:30 PM  Show Profile Send CindyLee a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm a leftie that learned to knit as a child, the "right" way. I never enjoyed knitting until my oldest sister (bless her heart!) showed me this strange way to knit that she learned in Europe..."Continental style" and boy, I was immediately off to the races!!! Even though I still knit right handed, just that different technique of holding the yarn in my left hand and picking the stitches was pure love for me.

Once in a while someone will tell me I'm knitting wrong, mostly kids that have seen their mothers or grandmothers knit. I just tell them I like to do things my own way ;)
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gwtreece
Permanent Resident

USA
7254 Posts

Posted - 09/20/2006 :  2:18:22 PM  Show Profile  Send gwtreece a Yahoo! Message Send gwtreece a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There is no real wrong way to knit. If it works for you, that is all that matters.

Wanda
My Blog
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katkar2
New Pal

USA
3 Posts

Posted - 10/11/2006 :  11:57:49 AM  Show Profile Send katkar2 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So glad to have stumbled onto this!

I am a leftie knitter. I learned to knit in college, many years ago. My room mate, a computer geek, math wizard, etc., was a great knitter and took it as a challenge to teach me to knit with my left hand. I have tried to master knitting with my right hand but now have given that up. Who cares? Many years ago, when taking knitting classes, I found some very inflexible yarn store owners who would insist my knitting was so so wrong! Never went back to the classes or the yarn stores but kept plugging away on my own.

Bonnie

"A balanced diet is a cookie in each hand."--Anonymous
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yarnspeaktome
Chatty Knitter

USA
285 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2006 :  06:56:03 AM  Show Profile  Send yarnspeaktome a Yahoo! Message Send yarnspeaktome a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My grandmum was literally a "Master Knitter". She never took so called formal knitting classes in her life. She learned from her mum and grandmum like they did before them (etc etc etc); at least 4+ generations worth.

She could look at a pattern or finished piece on display (no matter how intricate), and tell you exactly how it's done. Man! Was it a headache for me to "translate" her methods into modern knitting terms so that I could read patterns[**].

Anyhoo, knitting is like weaving artisans she always says. You practice and practice to manipulate the yarn and needles to do what you want. She knitted left/right handed, cont./eng./combined/varied, and held her working yarn in at least 4 different ways (L/R hand) to maintain proper tension[crazy].

I learned alot from her since I was little. I understand perfectly (attending classes) how one feels when everyone says "No one is suppose to knit like that!". Or "Oh no dear, your gauge will a mess!", and "Sweetie, please try to follow the class. You're project is not going to come out wrong. You don't want to keep frogging or start over."

I've walked out of classes before. But I got my revenge: you should've seen their faces when I come walking back in (3 weeks later) with an Aran fisherman sweater 90% complete[:00]. The class was for a basic first time shoulder seamed sweater. Ahem, mine is raglan.

The only reason I started taking classes is because I've never made garments before. Never like using DPN's until I discovered cirs. Before that I made loads of fancy throw and afghans.

"I thought you said that you didn't know how to knit?" the instructor said to me. "No. I said that I never made a sweater before because I'm not good with DPN's. You assumed I didn't because of the way I held my yarn, and by the methods I worked."

I agree whole-heartedly. Knit whatever works for you and the "Bleep" with what everyone else thinks. As long as the end result is the same who cares. I quote "Individuality is a unique learning curve that defines oneself from the others.".

Elsie[meow]
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Queen Knitsalot
Permanent Resident

USA
1331 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2006 :  07:32:29 AM  Show Profile Send Queen Knitsalot a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Here's a side-thought. Whenever I move to a new place, when I set up the bathrooms, I unconsciously set them up for a right-handed person. Soap is on the right, toothpaste and brushes--on the right, even towel holders on the right. Ditto in the kitchen. I did this even when I was single, and when there were two sinks in the bath and I had "my own sink". I always would move my stuff later to accomadate my "leftiness". Does anyone else have this quirk?

Suzanne

"Life is too short to eat ugly food."
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millsgrad
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
479 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2006 :  11:39:47 AM  Show Profile  Visit millsgrad's Homepage Send millsgrad a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Queen Knitsalot

Here's a side-thought. Whenever I move to a new place, when I set up the bathrooms, I unconsciously set them up for a right-handed person. Soap is on the right, toothpaste and brushes--on the right, even towel holders on the right. Ditto in the kitchen. I did this even when I was single, and when there were two sinks in the bath and I had "my own sink". I always would move my stuff later to accomadate my "leftiness". Does anyone else have this quirk?

Suzanne

"Life is too short to eat ugly food."




Suzanne,

You know, I never thought of if until you mentioned it in this post! I do the same thing-put everything on the right side but even when I had my 'own' sink I still put everything on the right because I wanted the left side clear for when I brushed my teeth or what have you because I take the stuff from the right side and put it on my left when I'm using said item. Habits are hard to break!

rhoda

Come see my blog!
http://g-girl-knittingadventures.blogspot.com/
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Mama Bear
Gabber Extraordinaire

417 Posts

Posted - 10/12/2006 :  6:18:47 PM  Show Profile Send Mama Bear a Private Message  Reply with Quote
It's the opposite at our house. More left-handers than right-handers. The mouse on all the computers is on the left, most of the scissors are left handed... my poor right-handed daughter didn't know what it was to live in a right-handed world until she married and she had to re-adjust to having the mouse on the right!

I did teach her to knit right handed (and gave her a choice of a few ways of doing so).

Mama Bear

[img]http://beartoes.com/images/bearbutton.jpg[/img]
My Blog:www.beartoes.com
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leftyinatlanta
New Pal

2 Posts

Posted - 10/24/2006 :  10:00:41 PM  Show Profile Send leftyinatlanta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi all,

Just wanted to chime in. I started knitting about three years ago, when I set out to do it left-handed. And with the help of my righty mom's guidance along with the Internet as a resource, I learned! I've made plenty of scarves and a hat or two. I've never tackled anything more complicated than that...until now! I got a design for fingerless gloves that can transform into mittens that I'm trying out.

Here's a great resource for what to do with right-handed patterns.

http://www.cobweb.net/%7Eknitting/lefties.html

Also, there's a knitter on YouTube who's showing off her combined method of left-handed knitting. I think video is a great way to show different ways to knit!

http://www.youtube.com/profile?user=MommyDiane
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mamacita
Chatty Knitter

USA
155 Posts

Posted - 10/25/2006 :  09:31:14 AM  Show Profile Send mamacita a Private Message  Reply with Quote
LeftyinAtlanta,

Thank you so much for the reference to the site. I just printed up the conversions for the stitch patterns found there. I have had the yarn sitting here for over a month to start the Backyard Leaves Scarf from Scarf Style but have put off starting because I was unsure how to convert the stitches to my left-handed knitting (moving the yarn from the right to left needle). I will sit down to make sure it converts all the stitches in the pattern to ones I can understand. If not, back to here site to check it out.

Thanks a BUNCH!!!!!
Cheryl
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freespirit638@yahoo.com
New Pal

27 Posts

Posted - 10/26/2006 :  06:32:40 AM  Show Profile Send freespirit638@yahoo.com a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm a newbie here and I love this.. A place to hang out and chat about what we love to do.. Doesn't matter if you are right handed or left handed.. Just enjoy what you are doing.. My Mom, bless her heart tried to each me how to crochet right handed, leftie here, lol.. She finally gave up and let me do it my way.. About 11 yrs. ago I taught myself how to knit, I had worked in a yarn store (candy store for me) yrs. ago and they had free pamplets for left handed knitting.. Well I learned, it may not be knitted right handed but it is still beautiful work.. Just have fun and enjoy your needleworks... I love to use my cable needles because I can make more hats that way, yes I knit in the flat.. I do alot of charity knitting so I knit in the flat.. May take a little longer but then I end up with 5 to 6 hats within 2 days... One stitch at a time...
You all have a blessed day!

Yolanda

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knitter gma
New Pal

USA
8 Posts

Posted - 01/21/2007 :  10:04:07 PM  Show Profile Send knitter gma a Private Message  Reply with Quote
So very very happy to find this site! First of all who is to say that knitting right handed is the right way, maybe they are the one knitting wrong. Anyway enough said, how about sharing patterns? I think it would be great if we could share patterns we all have used, instead of having to rewrite before starting a project. I would love to have knitting socks lefted handed on circular needles, also fingerless gloves on circular. Anyone have leftee patterns?
Hoping to hear from someone soon.
This is my first of hopefully many posts.
Connie
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cableready
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
386 Posts

Posted - 01/22/2007 :  04:53:44 AM  Show Profile Send cableready a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I am a left-handed knitter and don't rewrite any patterns that are symmetrical. With very few exceptions, if you follow the pattern as written it should come out just fine. Think about this, your k2tog, for example, will slant the opposite way of a rightie's, but it will appear on the opposite side of what you are knitting. Sketch it out. You are coming from the opposite side.

Cardigan sides will be switched - the left will be the right and vice versa. But you will still have knit a left and right if you follow the right-handed directions.

Symmetrical cables will twist the opposite way - this is easily remedied if you feel they must twist the way in the pattern - otherwise they will slant the opposite way, but still be consistent.

This may all seem clear as mud - but the underlying point is truly not to overthink the directions too much. I have knit complicated lace patterns, arans and fair isles. The only time I have had to re-work a direction is for an asymmetrical cable.

Pamela

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fiberfollies
New Pal

42 Posts

Posted - 02/08/2007 :  07:24:54 AM  Show Profile  Visit fiberfollies's Homepage Send fiberfollies a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have had no troubles whatsoever knitting from the southpaw perspective. There's too much overthinking going on. Just knit and surprise yourself. That's what I did, and do. I have only had to change sleeve decreases, as they tended to lean the wrong way in the sleeve, and left gaps. It looked really funny. Maybe I make other adjustments but don't think of it much. I never twisted stitches. Strangely, twisting stitches was the hardest thing to learn!

Lace, cables, stranded knitting, intricate shaping and interesting stitches are not to be feared. What's the very worst thing that can happen? That's right, you'd have to unravel a bit to correct something, and I'd guess that every knitter in the world has had to unravel sometimes.

I'm sure the overthinking isn't confined to lefties. Many people seem to think knitting is complicated and scare themselves out of trying. I gotta hand it to you knitting teachers, how the heck do you get people to overcome their fear?

It's nice to have a forum focussed on lefties. I've already learned new things to make knitting even more fun. And even easier!

FiberFollies
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ElaineKnits
New Pal

USA
40 Posts

Posted - 03/21/2007 :  09:06:17 AM  Show Profile Send ElaineKnits a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Well, I'm a redheaded lefthanded knitter (someone else mentioned that she was, and how rare WE must be... I'm also A-neg blood type which is only 7% of the population!). I knit off the right handed needles onto the left, and could manage some things, but the stitches were always twisted, and I couldn't manage to figure it out. I COULD NOT knit the righthanded way except so slowly that it would have taken me months to finish the simplest scarf. Either way, I hated all that throwing! Finally, 3 years ago, I discovered Elizabeth Zimmermann, (why it took me so long.... after so many struggles, I dumped knitting and went right into quilting where the issues are much less!), but wanted to knit again a few years ago, as I said, found EZ (how I wish I'd found her earlier!), and picked up Continental almost instantly! My only problem was a tendency to purl the easy way, which made it backwards when the next row was knitting. I soon learned to recognize when I had done that, and knit into the back, which straightened out the stitch. Now that I do two strand colorwork, I can do it by holding both colors in my left hand, or one in either hand, and go go go. I am faster with both strands in the left hand, but I CAN do the one yarn in each hand deal if needed. Continental for me, with picking instead of that awkward stop and throw, is so much speedier and my tension is spot on.

So I am knitting "left handed" but moving the stitches from left needle to right, but as I am fiddling the yarn about with my left hand, (my continental is a variant), the right hand only has to get in there and scoop, or pick, and pull... and no more problems! I won't go back. I do want to work on the knitting backwards and forwards, which is essentially knitting alternately righthanded and lefthanded... because it is really fast... Meg Swansen (EZ's daughter) does this. I forget if you can see her doing it in any of the videos, though. THAT is fast!

ElaineKnits in Western Washington
(now forming a Sunday afternoon knitting/spinning group way north of Seattle!)
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cindymen
Warming Up

71 Posts

Posted - 03/22/2007 :  8:26:31 PM  Show Profile Send cindymen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My daughter's friend wants to learn how to knit but has had trouble with right handed teachers. As a right handed person, I'm not much help to her either. Any advice for us? She really wants to learn to knit. (I did teach my daughter to knit the way I do).
Cindy
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BB in NJ
Chatty Knitter

USA
289 Posts

Posted - 03/27/2007 :  04:34:30 AM  Show Profile Send BB in NJ a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Elaine! Another redheaded lefty knitter over here! Never could find someone to teach me to knit like a lefty but had a friend who could teach anyone to knit, so I knit like a righty (UK-style); yet I cast-on lefty. Taught myself to crochet, embroider, and needlepoint lefty.

BB in NJ

So much yarn, so little time

visit my blog: http://expknitter.blogspot.com/
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jenlyon60
Chatty Knitter

USA
111 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2007 :  02:27:44 AM  Show Profile Send jenlyon60 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
to BB in NJ...

I'm a lefty and do the same thing. I cast on lefty and knit righty.

I can KNIT lefty, but Purling is difficult. Haven't managed to consistently figure out how to wrap the yarn lefty-style to purl left-handed. Go figure. So I cast on left handed and knit right-handed. Which, actually, considering I usually cast-on with a long-tail, means I guess that I do manage to start on the right side (since long-tail normally leaves one starting on the wrong side).
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Antigone
New Pal

18 Posts

Posted - 04/12/2007 :  10:44:23 PM  Show Profile Send Antigone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I'm so wierd. I am a total lefty. Have been my whole life. I taught my self how to knit not to long ago from directions and videos on the internet. I tried many ways.

I knit english stlye moving stiches from my left needle to my right with the yarn in my left hand. I purl continental moving my stitches from my left needle to my right and still holding the yarn in my left hand.

I am still too new of a knitter to know if this is called left handed or right handed knitting. I don't think my stitches are twisted.

This is comfy to me.

happy knitting

Antigone the House Cat
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love2stamp
Chatty Knitter

USA
124 Posts

Posted - 05/26/2007 :  3:49:25 PM  Show Profile  Visit love2stamp's Homepage Send love2stamp a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Antigone, as I understand it, if you're holding the working yarn in your left hand, that's continental style.

Here's my question for people who knit by moving the stitches from the right needle to the left one...isn't that analogous to writing backwards? Do you also form words and write from the right edge of the page to the left?


Emy

Been there, done that, blogged it... http://eyow.livejournal.com
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cableready
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
386 Posts

Posted - 05/27/2007 :  04:04:48 AM  Show Profile Send cableready a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I CAN mirror write, and my writing is better that way - but few can read it.

Pamela
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