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 Left-handed knitting
 Purling in Leftie English
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Zari
Chatty Knitter

133 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  07:35:35 AM  Show Profile Send Zari a Private Message
I can do the knit stitch English style, from left to right, holding the yarn in my right hand. Does anyone know how to purl in this method?

Thanks,
~Zari

sarakate
Seriously Hooked

USA
818 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  07:49:29 AM  Show Profile Send sarakate a Private Message
I think we may need some clarification of terms. Do you mean by "from left to right" that you're moving from the left edge of the fabric to the right one, or that you're starting with stitches on your left needle and working them onto the right one?

I'm going to assume the former, because the latter is the majority direction and generally wouldn't be considered "leftie", but please correct me if I'm wrong. Assuming that's what you meant, then I don't think holding the yarn in your right hand is English method -- it's Continental. English method holds the yarn in the same hand as the needle that stitches are worked onto, while Continental method holds the yarn in the same hand as the needle that stitches are worked from.

Assuming that what you're doing is working from the left edge to the right edge of the fabric, with stitches starting on the right needle and moving to the left needle, and yarn in your right hand, you're going to want to do the same thing that majority-direction Continental knitters do, except mirrored. Bring the yarn to the front between the needles, insert your left needle into the front of the stitch on your right needle so that the two needle tips are pointing in opposite directions, and then bring your yarn up so it's in front of both needles, and pull it through the stitch. You'll face the same issue here that majority-direction Continental knitters do, which is that the direction of pull on the yarn tends to make it jump away from the tip of the needle instead of coming nicely through the stitch, and you can address it in the same manner, which is to let the yarn come around the tip of the left needle, and then push it down in between the left needle tip and the right needle shaft, so it stays wrapped as you pull it through.

Does that help?
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Zari
Chatty Knitter

133 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  08:25:43 AM  Show Profile Send Zari a Private Message
Whoops, I made a mistake - I mean that I'm starting on the left side of the fabric, with the yarn in my left hand, and working towards the right side of the fabric.
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Zari
Chatty Knitter

133 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  08:25:43 AM  Show Profile Send Zari a Private Message
Whoops, I made a mistake - I mean that I'm starting on the left side of the fabric, with the yarn in my left hand, and working towards the right side of the fabric.
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sarakate
Seriously Hooked

USA
818 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  08:57:55 AM  Show Profile Send sarakate a Private Message
Oh, well, that does change things, doesn't it? :)

Okay, yes, yarn in your left hand with that movement is leftie English. Just to check, you are working in a true mirrored fashion, with your stitch orientation mirrored, so the leg of your stitches that's further to the left is the one in front, correct?

To purl in this fashion, you'll bring the yarn forward between the needles, then put the left needle tip into the stitch on the right needle so that the tips are pointing in opposite directions. You'll then bring the working yarn across the point where the needles cross, around the left needle tip clockwise (as viewed with the tip of the left needle pointing at your nose), and then up again from beneath the left needle (this may sound like the opposite of what I said before, but it really isn't -- you're just coming from a different direction), and then you'll pull it through the old stitch and let the old stitch drop. If you start to get twisted up, check for that clockwise direction of wrap, and check your orientation *after* you've let the old stitch go -- before that point things can look a little odd, because the old stitch pulls on the new one.
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Zari
Chatty Knitter

133 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  09:27:10 AM  Show Profile Send Zari a Private Message
Well, I guess what I'm doing isn't true mirrored, because the stitches sit on the needle the same way they do in regular knitting. So I guess I'm not knitting leftie, but knitting backwards? I'd think it'd only be a change of what direction to throw the yarn, clockwise or counterclockwise. Man, I wish I could show you what I'm talking about.
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Zari
Chatty Knitter

133 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  09:27:10 AM  Show Profile Send Zari a Private Message
Well, I guess what I'm doing isn't true mirrored, because the stitches sit on the needle the same way they do in regular knitting. So I guess I'm not knitting leftie, but knitting backwards? I'd think it'd only be a change of what direction to throw the yarn, clockwise or counterclockwise. Man, I wish I could show you what I'm talking about.
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sarakate
Seriously Hooked

USA
818 Posts

Posted - 08/03/2006 :  10:39:56 AM  Show Profile Send sarakate a Private Message
Well, it *does* rather sound like you're knitting back backwards, since basically the difference between that and mirrored knitting is just the orientation. Here, take a look at my article on KBB -- does that look like what you're doing? If it does, then you can follow the instructions at the bottom of the article for purling back backwards, if you want to keep doing what you've been doing.

However, since the difference is just the orientation, you're quite right that it's only a change of which direction you're throwing the yarn. If you switch to throwing it clockwise when you knit, you'll be set up in the mirrored orientation, and then your purl stitches will be done as I explained above. This would probably be a bit easier, since KBB does kind of require an awkward entry into the stitch when you're purling back backwards, but either way is fine as long as you're getting the results you intended to get.
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