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 How to hold DPNs!
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Maia
New Pal

United Kingdom
47 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  12:35:18 PM  Show Profile Send Maia a Private Message
My lovely boyfriend gave me Knitting on the Road by Nancy Bush for Christmas, and my sister gave me some aran yarn spun from sheep we helped look after at school, and I have some hand-me-down DPNs so I'm all set for my first pair of socks! But I'm having great difficulty holding the needles. Does anyone have any advice for a good hand position? I knit 'continental' style (carrying the yarn in my left hand); I don't know if this makes it more difficult? Many thanks! I look forward to hearing your wisdom.

pjkite
Permanent Resident

1198 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  12:53:48 PM  Show Profile  Visit pjkite's Homepage  Send pjkite a Yahoo! Message Send pjkite a Private Message
Do you normally hold needles 'fork style', like most continental knitters? I knit continential by preference (though I can do English), and have never had any problems with dpns. Hopefully you're working with a set of 5 needles so that you can work in a square...but a set of 4 in a triangle will do the job. A basic sock primer:

Cast on the total number of stitches to one needle. Then you have a choice: either knit in pattern onto the other 2 or 3 needles or just slip the stitches onto the other needles. Form into a square or triangle, and turn over the whole thing if necessary to get yourself headed in the right direction. Now knit from the needle closest to your body onto an empty dpn. Turn counter-clockwise and knit from the next needle, then the next, and finally from the last of the 4 (if you're working in a square). Now just keep going. If there's a gap on your first row, use your yarn tail to close it. I use that same yarn tail to keep track of my rounds, and then put it at the center of the heel stitches when I get to that point.

Maia, there are some great sock tutorials online. Google "sockknitters" and one of the links will be http://www.socknitters.com/ There are wonderful resources available on this site, including tutorials on several sock patterns and techniques. Good luck, Maia, and feel free to PM me if you need one-on-one help!

Pamela Kite
East Tennessee
http://fiberlife.blogspot.com/

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lella
Permanent Resident

9712 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  1:59:55 PM  Show Profile Send lella a Private Message
I hold my needles under my hands, like you would hold a spoon you're scooping Ice cream with... well, that's almost what it's like...Anyway, with the thumb involved in controlling them, but I'm not a continental knitter.

And, congratulations on you good gifts! I second all the good advice in the second post, there.

lella[img]http://smilies.sofrayt.com/^/9971/omelet.gif[/img]

http://zippiknits.blogspot.com
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sarakate
Seriously Hooked

USA
818 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  4:38:37 PM  Show Profile Send sarakate a Private Message
I've written up sort of a beginner's guide to DPNs, with a description of how I find it helpful to hold them; it starts here and then is followed by a couple of posts on particular aspects.
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knits_for_preemies
Permanent Resident

USA
1957 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  4:58:59 PM  Show Profile  Visit knits_for_preemies's Homepage Send knits_for_preemies a Private Message
Thanks sarakate for your great explanation! I discovered that I'm actually doing it right through pretty much trial and error.

Great little tips. I put your page in my favorites folder for reference when I'm helping someone else learn dpns. It is hard to remember all the particulars when you have personally gotten so used to just making them work from experience.
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booglass
Permanent Resident

Costa Rica
1987 Posts

Posted - 12/28/2005 :  9:07:05 PM  Show Profile  Visit booglass's Homepage Send booglass a Private Message
Any way you can!!!! Don't worry you'll get the hang of it. DPNs feel so weird and clumsy at first but in no time you'll be knitting with dpns and multi-tasking perhaps drinking a latte. ;-)

bonnie

Check out my blog:
http://www.booglass.typepad.com
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Maia
New Pal

United Kingdom
47 Posts

Posted - 12/30/2005 :  08:20:38 AM  Show Profile Send Maia a Private Message
Thanks everyone! I've learned a lot, as usual at KR! :o)
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cknits
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
464 Posts

Posted - 12/30/2005 :  08:44:04 AM  Show Profile Send cknits a Private Message
Pamela,

As I was reading your post, I noticed that you say to TURN OVER the set of DP before knitting. I noticed as I was working on my first pair of socks recently, that the wrong side was facing out. I pushed it up through the needles to reverse it but is does seem quite right, the sock should be working down, right? Did I forget a step? What do I need to do differently? I am about five inches into the sock and would hate to pull it out again. I've started over several times.

This time I've switched to Magic Loop after watching the video on knittinghelp.com, that method has been easier. But I have been wondering what to do about my upside-down sock.

Carrie
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pjkite
Permanent Resident

1198 Posts

Posted - 12/30/2005 :  09:06:53 AM  Show Profile  Visit pjkite's Homepage  Send pjkite a Yahoo! Message Send pjkite a Private Message
Carrie, I think the only problem you have is that you're working with the needle tips away from your body. In other words, most of the sock is between the tips of the needles and your tummy/chest. You're seeing the wrong side of the sock when you look between the needle tips, right?

IF that's what the problem is, try turning the needles and sock upside down (180 degrees) and knitting on the side closest to your chest/tummy - so that you're looking at the right side of the sock between the needle tips. That should take care of your knitting upwards. If it doesn't, holler back - I'll be on here for a couple more hours between other chores.

Pamela Kite
East Tennessee
http://fiberlife.blogspot.com/

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cknits
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
464 Posts

Posted - 12/30/2005 :  09:16:04 AM  Show Profile Send cknits a Private Message
O.K. Pamela, now I feel just plain silly! You're right,again (you always give great advice). I was holding the needles away from me. Now it looks right, will wonders never cease?

Thanks very much!
Carrie
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Margie
Permanent Resident

USA
1032 Posts

Posted - 01/01/2006 :  5:09:05 PM  Show Profile Send Margie a Private Message
Carrie -

Don't feel silly. Making mistakes is a good way to learn. And, there's only one dumb/silly/stupid question in the whole world: that's the question you don't ask.

There are so many ways of doing things and another thing I firmly believe is

If it works for you, it's right.

We're all here to ask questions. I've done so myself a number of times and gotten help. Before you know it you will be helping someone else.

May your sts stay in place,
Margie
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KCShaw
Gabber Extraordinaire

USA
393 Posts

Posted - 01/01/2006 :  5:15:45 PM  Show Profile Send KCShaw a Private Message
This instruction is from DIY knitty gritty..its a video showing a sock knitter knitting on dpn continental. lovely to refer to when turning heels and toe as well.
http://www.diynetwork.com/diy/na_knitting/article/0,2025,DIY_14141_3484997,00.html
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