question for you knitters

how many of you knit in the Continental style (also called “left-handed style”)? When I learnt to knit, it was the English way, but after watching someone knit Continental, I was struck by how efficient and fluid it was. I’m teaching myself Continental now, and my goodness, at first, it was like trying to write with your non-dominant hand; I knew what it was I needed to do, but my hands were just awkward. I’m progressing now, but it’s still taking so much more concentration, as I’m still growing accustomed to it. YouTube instructional videos have been helping, I’m not going to lie. I’m the type of learner who needs to watch someone do it in order to grasp it as quickly as possible; if I can see someone do it, then I’ll get it; but trying to decipher the steps from two grainy b&w photos in my knitting book just wasn’t enough.

So, which way do you knit, and have you ever switched styles?

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4 Responses to “question for you knitters”


  1. 1 Adele February 4, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    I too am trying to teach myself continental knitting from You Tube demos. Like you, I’m finding it very awkward, and for now have put it aside.

    I guess it also depends on how much you want to speed knit; or to knit with rhythm albeit at a steadier pace.

    I also saw on You Tube that there are many other styles of knitting techniques – Greek, Portuguese etc.

    Best of luck.

  2. 2 lemoineau February 5, 2009 at 7:59 am

    Hello Adele!

    I’m so glad I’m not the only one who is finding the transition quite awkward. I have been practicing, and although I am growing more accustomed to it, I am still feeling it out, and my movements are neither fluid nor speedy. I am actually hoping (assuming) that switching to Continental will (eventually) make me a much faster knitter. I think I’ll be much more likely to finish projects when I know that I’ll be able to do them quickly and more fluidly in Continental.

    Good luck on your quest, and thank you for your input!

  3. 3 kimtori February 5, 2009 at 4:53 pm

    I knit in a sort of modified English style. I tried switching to continental, but the progress felt so. slow. and my tension went haywire. It looked so messy, and I found that frustrating. While in English my tension is quite even and such, Continental I wasn’t. I should try to teach myself again someday – on things that are going to be felted or something so I can’t get frustrated about messy kniting – but until then, I’ll be knitting English.

  4. 4 Kali February 6, 2009 at 6:03 am

    It seems odd to me that some call continental knitting “left handed”, because I left hander would hold it “right handed”… but that has absolutely nothing to do with your questions ;-)

    I’m a (not very experienced – just a couple pairs of socks and a lap blanket) continental knitter myself, but don’t have much advice for transitioning. I haven’t knit english style for… umm… well I’m not really sure how many years, but enough that I basically didn’t know how to knit anymore and was taught continental as if I had never knit before. I do like the style better though, from the little I do recall of english style.

    Have you seen knittinghelp.com before? I’ve known several people that did really well with the videos there. If you haven’t seen it already, you should go take a look! And not just for the continental (though that is on there) – there are all sorts of other things too. Hope that helps some! And good luck with choosing which style you prefer :-)


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