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Wen
Permanent Resident

Australia
3244 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2008 :  4:03:38 PM  Show Profile  Visit Wen's Homepage Send Wen a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My grandmother taught me using Holiday acrylic - the new best thing you could machine wash it! There were normally 3 types of wool available; 3ply and 4ply baby wool that were knitted up on 3.25mm needles for baby clothes, 8ply (DK) for everyday garments knitted on a 4mm needle and 12 ply if you wanted a thicker warmer garment.

Mohair was also available however it tended to be scratchy.

Needles were generally from England either Milwards or Aero, all were metal up to a 4.5mm and plastic for the larger ones. Rather than being marked with metric however they had numbers, 3.25mm=10 4mm = 8. Baby clothes were knitted on 10s and 12s 8ply on 8s and 10s. Circulars were unheard of if you wanted to knit a hat you used 4 needles; hats were NEVER seamed.

The first things I made were coathanger covers and slippers.

Wen

2008 stats: 9 FO, 7 WIP, 0 frogpond.
http://www.flickr.com/groups/kr_members/
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jtamsn
Permanent Resident

USA
1684 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2008 :  6:32:21 PM  Show Profile Send jtamsn a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My SIL taught me to knit when I was about 8. She is 15 yrs older than I, and I thought her knitting was cool (my mother's knitting, I guess didn't impress me as much). My mother, however taught me to do things like knitting with dp's and turning heels. I don't know how serious I was about knitting when I was a kid, I'm sure I did things like scarves for my dolls etc. I became serious about knitting about the time I got married 30+ years ago. Money was tight, and I made bureau scarves (crochet), and knit bells for Christmas ornaments. Once my son came along, I started knitting for him, I dont think I've put my needles down since.
judy
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technikat
Gabber Extraordinaire

595 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2008 :  7:34:37 PM  Show Profile Send technikat a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My mom showed me how to knit when I was about 8. She only had one set of needles. they were steel about a size 1 and some very thin yarn, probably fingering weight. I did it but was not much excited by it. Then I tried again as an adult and picked it up from a book. I love trying new techniques and so just tried different stitch patterns and cabled patterns just to see if I could. Then I had to try lace and loved it. Of course after reading all the praise of socks I had to try knitting those too. They're ok, but it's not love.

Crochet I totally learned from a book in the 70's when granny squares were so popular. I can do it but have never really been excited about it. I like the feel of knitted objects better so I stick to knitting with occasional trim in crochet.

My FOs
http://www.flickr.com/photos/technikat/
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kdcrowley
Permanent Resident

USA
4773 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2008 :  8:07:27 PM  Show Profile  Visit kdcrowley's Homepage Send kdcrowley a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My paternal aunt taught me to crochet when I was 8 or 9 during the summer at the cabin with baby acrylic....I did a bit off and on through the years, tried to learn to knit as well, and then finally the knitting stuck when I was 31.

Now, could someone teach me to stop knitting??

(FTR, knitting is a gateway drug, gateway to spinning, dyeing and a small business.)

Kelley
Check out my solar-dyed yarns at http://www.ceallachdyes.com
and my blog at http://ceallachknits.blogspot.com
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lella
Permanent Resident

9712 Posts

Posted - 06/02/2008 :  10:27:43 PM  Show Profile Send lella a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My mother's mother taught me to crochet when I was small, mother taught me hand sewing, and I learned to knit on my own later, about 11, from impatient friends. But I didn't knit very well at all until my paternal grandmother and aunt caught me up and taught me how to knit properly. I had some real problems with casting on, and my purling was very weird indeed.

Zippiknits
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knittymommy
Warming Up

USA
94 Posts

Posted - 06/03/2008 :  11:52:59 AM  Show Profile Send knittymommy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My father learned a lot of crafts from his mother, knitting, crochet, tatting, baking bread. i would have loved to meet the woman, I feel our family history in just about every thing I do. I think that's part of my passion for my "tradionalist" lifestyle.

T.L.
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mauvemood
New Pal

New Zealand
25 Posts

Posted - 06/03/2008 :  3:36:40 PM  Show Profile Send mauvemood a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My mother taught me to knit when I was 12. My brother had just been born the year before and she wanted me to knit for him. It was good practice to make little jerseys and I am sure she was just boosting my moral by telling me they were good. She was a brilliant knitter and there is no way she would have needed my amateur attempts.
However, I am so happy she encouraged me as that was 45 years ago and my needles have constantly been in my hands since then.
Sue
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argoknit
Seriously Hooked

USA
711 Posts

Posted - 06/04/2008 :  7:24:10 PM  Show Profile  Visit argoknit's Homepage Send argoknit a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I taught myself from a book when I was 8 (1979). I had a girlfriend that had been knitting already for a couple of years. She was making sweaters and I was terribly impressed. My mom didn't know how to knit, but she did have some instruction books (circa 1950s or 60s). As a result of learning from a book I thought I knit wrong for years. I knit Continental and the only knitters I ever saw threw their yarn. It wasn't until about 10 years ago that I learned that what I was doing had a name and it was perfectly fine. This girlfriend also was in 4-H so I decided to join as I thought it would be a good place to learn. I was wrong. They have this terrible tiered system that says first you must only do this, then when you have accomplished the first step you can move on to the next step. Needless to say the first step was square and rectangular items like potholders and scarves. I was much more adventurous than that. I felt frustrated by the 4-H restrictions so I quit and tackled this knitting thing on my own. The first thing I knit was a pair of mittens made on 4 needles. Potholders - HAH!

Then I didn't knit for awhile and in junior high I picked it up again. The first sweater I knit was a very nice aran cardigan that won me grand champion at our county fair. Not bad for a first attempt at a sweater. I also knit a couple of really awful (read, trendy) sweaters during this time. During junior high and high school, and college I was much more into sewing. I was an Apparel and Textiles major in school. That is in fact what my degree is in, even though I know longer use the degree professionally. I did work as an apparel designer for about 5 years out of college before I changed career paths. I do have to admit it still helps me a lot in my hobbies. It's great to know about the attributes of different fibers.

I didn't pick up my knitting again in earnest until 1999 when a girlfriend and I travelled to Iceland. She is an avid knitter and has been so since she was about 5. She picked up some great Icelandic wool to bring home to make some mittens. We both also bought beautiful handknit Icelandic sweaters. This inspired me to pick up my needles again and I haven't put them down since. It's a wonderful pastime!

Blog: http://twistyfarmy.wordpress.com/
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msbeader
New Pal

12 Posts

Posted - 06/04/2008 :  9:49:54 PM  Show Profile Send msbeader a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My mother and maternal aunt taught me to knit, embroider, and crochet when I was about 6. I remember making a quilt for my doll's bed. I learned the basics but I taught myself to knit socks and cables. When I started knitting there was only acrylic yarn. At least that was what was available where I shopped; Kress, Cornet, etc. The variety of yarns and techniques available and widely disseminated has changed the art of knitting. The internet has made knitting techniques widely available to all across the world. I love what has happened and I happily continue to learn.
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scarfitup
Chatty Knitter

192 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  03:50:19 AM  Show Profile  Visit scarfitup's Homepage Send scarfitup a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My great aunt taught me to knit when I was about 8. She was very accomplished and was a prolific producer. Among other things like absolutely gorgeous sweaters, she always knitted blankets and bandages for hospitals in NYC. She was a great inspiration. I produced the requisite cabled mohair sweaters in college for myself and everyone else, and then I don't remember knitting much until about 10 years ago - when the fibers changed so drastically that they just drew me in magically.

I see a return to much more traditional knitting right now - in lace, beautiful socks, sweaters, etc. But.....I'm into freeform these days, and that is totally new for me. I LOVE designing and experimenting with anything new in accessories and jewelry. Knitting ROCKS!!!




Scarf It Up!
http://scarf-it-up.blogspot.com
http://scarfitup.etsy.com
http://flickr.com/photos/scarfitup

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Flit
New Pal

6 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  05:18:08 AM  Show Profile Send Flit a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My mother taught me to knit American/English style when I was around twelve, I later taught myself to knit continental style. I made afghans and small items. I learned to crochet from my grandmother. After making a 100 stitch knit afghan that I never put together and a sweater that ended up with arms long enough for King Kong I put it away while I had babies and toddlers. Recently,lured by the beautiful yarns available I picked it up again, wanting to make socks. When a teacher told me I could never do that as I would never get my gauge small enough, I turned to the Internet and learned to make socks by first crocheting then knitting them, learning from DVDs. The best change for me is learning the Portuguese or modified Eastern technique of knitting via Andrea Wong's DVDs. Easy, fast and kind to aging arthritic hands. I like small projects--socks, tams, mittens, shells, although I have made larger items. Now I spin my own yarn.
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sueknitsagain
New Pal

6 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  05:34:00 AM  Show Profile  Visit sueknitsagain's Homepage Send sueknitsagain a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My aunt taught me to knit and purl at age 8 and for the next six years I just knit scraps. Visiting her again at age 14, I bought some tan knitting worsted at the dime store and a pattern and made a pullover. the color couldn't have been worse for my fair skin, so I unraveled the neckline ribbing and redid it in scarlet. No improvement and probably only wore it a couple of times.
The next sweater was an electric blue mohair V-neck. That really got me started and the third sweater was a four color Argyle inspired pullover with a hood. I'm still looking for that pattern. Must have been around 1961 Vogue or McCalls.
After that there was no stopping me and I knit dozens of sweaters. Mom gave them all away when I moved to Florida in 1965. I took one unfinished lace cardigan with me and didn't get around to finishing it until 20 years later.
Meanwhile I knit a few bad luck boyfriend sweaters.
After getting married in 1981 and moving onto a sailboat, I started knitting again on our honeymoon. We moved to the coast of Alabama and I bought a couble bed knitting machine and did custom work for a few years.
Now, I'm back to hand knitting and just loving the wonderful variety of yarns available. My stash grows and I'm having a ball with patterns by new designers.
I have a knitting blog too http://sueknitsagain.blogspot.com
In the earlier blogs you can see some of my earlier pieces.
Sue Sinclair in Florida
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marelle
New Pal

1 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  06:27:01 AM  Show Profile Send marelle a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My grandmother taught me to crochet when I was 6 or 7 and my mother encouraged the many projects that I knit for a Barbie-type doll I had in 1946-7. The thread I used was from a never-ending cone and a shade of green that I still remember. In 1948 we moved to Germany where a grandmotherly woman taught me to knit. When I returned to the U.S. for college I learned that my knitting method was DIFFERENT than that of my classmates. Years later I learned that it was called "Continental".
Early projects were the usual boyfriend sweater, Argyle socks during the early years of marriage, sweaters for my daughters, an Aran sweater for me and lots of hats, scarves and mittens for everyone during the MN years!
As my daughters grew and left home my knitting projects declined and I developed a passion for cross stitching. Three years ago cataract formation guided me back to knitting. Sock knitting, with an occasional Aran sweater or a fancy washcloth, currently satisfies my 60-year love affair with knitting.
marelle
http://marelle.etsy.com
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GGKnits
Chatty Knitter

USA
101 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  07:18:19 AM  Show Profile Send GGKnits a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My grandma taught me years ago -- just how to knit. At that time I couldn't tackle the cast on and bind off. After I got married she showed me how to crochet. I made one afghan and that was it (took so long to make my colors had changed by then and it didn't really get used). After changing jobs 1 1/2 years ago I dediscovered knitting and found KR and I am having a blast!
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luvcelticknits
New Pal

USA
20 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  07:52:59 AM  Show Profile Send luvcelticknits a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I think my mother taught me. I also got a lot of information from knitting books. I always enjoyed knitting; I have made some baby afghans and baby sweaters, and I made a sweater for me. Also, I joined a few knitting groups. Today, there is such a wide assortment of yarns to choose from; such beautiful colors and textures. The knitting patterns also are very stylish and there is something for every skill level.
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greyhound
New Pal

36 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  09:02:43 AM  Show Profile Send greyhound a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My mom taught me how to knit when I was 21 years old and the first thing I made was a purple sweater - I was knitting along and did not realize that I dropped a stitch and back then not too many people were using a crochet hook to pick up the stitch. I became frustrated and did not start knitting again until I moved to MI and a neighbor inspired me to start again. Now I am addicted - with my addiction I did get my mom to start up knitting again full time. My mom recently passed away and I have two of her ongoing projects at my home in AZ and plan on finishing them in her honor. Thanks Mom!
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vinette
New Pal

USA
3 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  09:41:08 AM  Show Profile Send vinette a Private Message  Reply with Quote
HI
My mom and Grandma taught me to knit. They knitted continental and I use the throw method. I learned on straight needles and using seams in sweaters and argyle socks.

I changed to using circular needles for almost all knitting, knit sweaters in the round and socks, too. I have always enjoyed knitting and crocheting.

Yarns have changed a lot during my knitting lifetime. I like a lot of the superwash yarns.

vinette
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lsvs
New Pal

USA
4 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  09:59:17 AM  Show Profile  Send lsvs a Yahoo! Message Send lsvs a Private Message  Reply with Quote
My grandmother taught me to crochet first, then knit. Lots of doll clothes, then mittens, hats and socks. She also taught me to sew on her treadle sewing machine. Lots of good memories!
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customyarns
Chatty Knitter

USA
128 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  11:16:03 AM  Show Profile  Visit customyarns's Homepage Send customyarns a Private Message  Reply with Quote


Just reading all these responses has been so interesting! It seems the majority of us learned from our moms, grandmoms, favorite aunts and even some dads. Just goes to prove that this ancient craft lovingly seems to be passed from generation to generation. Amen to that!

Linda Ostroff
Custom Yarns by Linda
www.customyarns.com
800-853-1338

Linda Ostroff
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knittingloulew
New Pal

USA
32 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2008 :  12:40:51 PM  Show Profile  Send knittingloulew a Yahoo! Message Send knittingloulew a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I learned to knit in the early 60s through 4-H. The only place to buy wool yarn then was the local woolen mill ends store, a huge warehouse of fabrics and yarn. The hanks of wool were floor to ceiling and could be wound on their electric(!) ball winder or by hand. Acrylics were more expensive than wools then, so most of my inital projects were from wool.

I made slippers and hats, then graduated to an "easy pattern afghan" that my instructor wrote out on a piece of paper. That afghan won me the blue ribbon at the county and state fairs, and it wasn't until many years later that I discovered that it was actually a feather and fan pattern. I had learned "right handed" so the next 4-H instructor taught me the proper left-handed method, which was actually continental style. I remember being thrilled to actually learn something left-handed, as everything else back then, except writing, had to be learned and done right-handed.

My mother sewed and darned, but did not knit. I did learn how to darn socks and fix runs in nylons, which were too expensive not to get the most wear out of them. My great-aunt did tatting and crochet and she taught me now to chain and single crochet; I only wish I had learned more from her. Another great-aunt did embroidery and beautiful pieces of cut-work.

Through high school, college and for some years after, I slowed down on knitting and got into embroidery and sewing. I really got back into knitting after retiring on disability and then when caring for my parents (so much waiting time in doctors offices, hospitals, etc.) When my brother and SIL had preemie twins, we discovered there were not a lot of similar clothes for boy-girl twins. Out came the books and knitting blossomed into marathons. There were too many sweaters for two children, but I just kept going and for 3 years after I sold children's sweaters at craft fairs and to anyone who wanted to order one. You could get Red Heart for $1 a skein and I had lots of it! From there, I went back to my knitting, re-learning patterning and learning color work. I now do test knitting, knit shop models for a LYS, and do some teaching.

How the world has changed, in almost 50 years... You can buy acrylics from many, many stores and there are LYS everywhere. Acrylics are now cheaper than wools in most cases, and there are so many neat fibers to choose from. I now have a stash I would never have imagined having, with all types, colors, styles of yarn I would never have imagined would be available way back when I started to knit.
Knitting is now done anywhere and everywhere, and people don't look questioningly when you pick up the needles and yarn. It is a wonderful craft, and I feel blessed to have learned it!



Live, Laugh, Love.
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