Left Handed Western Mount Knitting

The way we learn how to do a skill tends to be our preferred method.  I learned how to knit using the eastern uncrossed method and hence, this website is dedicated to knitting this way.  Most lefties, however, learn how to knit using the left handed western mount knitting.  Another lefty on Ravelry chastised me when I presented this website to the community as a resource.  She felt I would only confuse people since I only presented my way of knitting.  Because of this she did not think I should advertise and promote my website as a resource.

I have more faith in my fellow lefties and their smartness than she does.  If someone comes to this website and sees it isn’t the way they knit then they will move on and find another website that suits their needs.  I have had enough inquiries about different aspects of left handed knitting to know that my website is a useful website.  In addition, I have successfully assisted lefties who knit using the western mount.

Today’s post then is first, my acknowledgement that two ways to produce the knit stitch exist.  Second, that I knit the more unorthodox way and third , this website is geared towards the way I knit.

Western Mount Knitting

So, What is the difference?

Two differences exist:  which leg is the leading leg and the way the yarn wraps around the needle.   The next question, then, “Which one should I use?”  This is purely a matter of preference.  Both styles will produce the same result in the end.

In eastern uncrossed (the way I knit) the leading leg is in the back of the needle and you wrap the yarn clockwise as if the needle is pointing right at your face.

In western knitting the leading leg is in the front and you wrap your yarn counter clockwise.

Western mount knitting

You can see in this photo that I am about to start the next stitch.  I am going to insert my left needle from the right side of the stitch.

Western mount knitting

 

Here my needle is in the stitch and I am ready to wrap.

Left handed western mount knitting

Wrapping the yarn counter clockwise.  Then finish the stitch.

That’s all. You have now knitted using western mount.  This mimics how right handed knitter make the knit stitch.

Left handed western mount knitting

Here is the purl stitch.  Purl into the leg closest to you and wrap your yarn clockwise.

To recap:

Style                    Leading leg                         Direction of wrap

eastern                               In the back             Clockwise

western.                           In the front              Counter cw

Here’s a short video showing left handed western knitting.   Left handed Western Knitting

I hope this helps you have a better understanding of knitting and knowing that there is no right or wrong method to knitting.

 

Mini Sock Ornaments


Mini Sock Ornaments

You can never have too many ornaments on a Christmas tree, especially hand made ones.  Last Christmas my mother-in-law showed me a garland of mini socks ornaments. She bought them for a dollar at the thrift store.  It was really cute!  I thought, I can make these mini socks.  I love to knit socks! So, after many edits and rewrites, here is my pattern.

I am not fond of weaving in or any kind of finishing so I wrote this pattern to have as minimal finishing work.  When working in more than one color, carry the strands throughout.  since it is not being worn by an actual foot you need not worry about the floats and bulk that is created on the inside of the sock.

Please click on the link below to access the pattern.

mini sock ornament

You may also access the pattern HERE on Ravelry.

mini sock ornaments

Left Handed Short Rows

Short rows
Left Handed short rows

Short rows confounded me for years.  I found the process very daunting and avoided any pattern that used short rows.  I couldn’t find a good tutorial to help me demystify this very easy process.  Hopefully, you will find left handed short rows easy and straight forward with this picture tutorial.

So what are left handed short rows?  Short rows are a process of adding a pocket or wedge of fabric to your piece without adding length.  On the first two rows you knit to two stitches before the end of the row and then complete the left handed short row.  On all subsequent  rows you knit to the stitch before the previous short row thus each row becomes shorter and shorter.  When all short rows are completed then you knit across picking up all of the wraps and knitting them with the stitch they were wrapped around.

Continue reading “Left Handed Short Rows”

Left handed knit front and back (kfb)- A picture tutorial

Today let’s look at the very simple and very easy, left handed knit front and back (kfb).   It is an increase that is great for beginner knitters as it does not have directionality like the M1L and the M1R.  Another difference is that the kfb is made in a stitch where as the M1L and the M1R are made between stitches.  This is an important concept to know if you are substituting one increase for another in a pattern (I confess, I do that a lot).  I will explain further at the end of this post.

First, let’s look at when it is a good time to use the left handed knit front and back (kfb).  I typically do not use this increase unless I am working on a project that is inconsequential or where the increase is not part of the overall look of the finished fabric.  In addition, I will use it in a garter stitch pattern or in a ribbing pattern.  The increase blends into the fabric and does not stand out.  The kfb creates a purl bump so that is why it is good for garter stitch or ribbing. Continue reading “Left handed knit front and back (kfb)- A picture tutorial”

Left handed M1R increase (make 1 right)

The left handed M1R increase (make 1 right) is very similar in execution to the M1L increase.  The two differences with the M1R increase are that the initial movement of the stitch is performed with the tip of the right hand needle instead of the tip of the left hand needle and the leg in which your left hand needle is inserted into to make the stitch.   As you can imagine these simple changes accounts for the different slant of the increase.

Step 1 of the Left Handed M1R increase

(Click on any image to enlarge)

Left handed M1R increase

The first step is to locate the bar that runs horizontally between the two stitches that will have the increase.  It is easy to find this bar if you pull the  two needles slightly apart.

Step 2

Left handed M1R increase

Next, using the tip of your RIGHT needle, insert the needle from front to back into the horizontal bar.

Step 3

Left handed M1R increase

Then, from here on out the rest is just like making a normal knit stitch.  The above photo shows, “In through the back door”.

Step 4

Left handed M1R increaseNext you will yarn over or “around the back”.

Step 5


Left Handed M1R increase

Finally, “out through the window and off jumps Jack!”

The Left Handed M1R Increase completed

 

Left Handed M1R increase

In the above photo you can see the left handed M1R increase with the slant leaning to the right.  Also in the photo you can see a right leaning decrease (k2tog) left over from a previous post.

To recap:  The left leaning increase is made using the tip of the left needle and inserting the needle from front to back, then making the stitch by inserting the needle from right to left in the back leg (the leg closest to you).

The right leaning increase is made using the tip of the right needle and also inserting the needle from front to back, but then making the stitch by inserting the needle into the leading leg as with any knit stitch.

I hope you have enjoyed this brief tutorial.  Please leave a comment below.  If you have any questions, you can also leave those in the comments and I will get back to you shortly.

As always, if you have ideas for future posts feel free to leave me a comment below or send an email.

Happy Knitting!

-Karen Lynn

 

Left Handed m1L increase (make 1 increase)

Unlike decreases, there are multiple ways to make increases in knitting. Just like the decreases, the increases have directionality and become part of the look of the final piece.  Since there is directionality there are two separate increases.  Today we will look at the left handed m1L increase otherwise known as make 1 left increase.  In the next post we will look at the left handed m1L increase’s counterpart, the m1R.

(Click on any picture to enlarge)

Left handed m1L increase

When creating an increase, in this case, the left handed m1, you will be putting an increase inbetween two stitches and you will be using the bar that runs horizontally between the two stitches. Continue reading “Left Handed m1L increase (make 1 increase)”

Reading Knitting Charts – Left Handed Knitting

 

I want to take a break today from increases and decreases to show you how to read a knitting chart.  Reading knitting charts is so much easier than written directions.  I prefer a chart 100 times more than written directions for two reasons.  First, I am a visual learner so I find it quite easy to look at my work and then look at the pattern and see if they match. If my work doesn’t look like the pattern then I know I have made an error.  Also, I find it cumbersome to try and follow along when there are lengthy written directions.  I easily become lost and become frustrated because I spend more time trying to figure out where I am in the pattern than I do knitting.  Second, as a lefty I can read the chart left to right and I do not have to change anything! Continue reading “Reading Knitting Charts – Left Handed Knitting”

The Left Handed Central Double Decrease (ccd)

 

The Left handed central double decrease, abbreviated cdd, is a decrease of two stitches.  It is most often used at the points of leaves.  It is a wonderful stitch to know as it makes the points of the leaves look professional.  The reason it looks so beautiful is that the left and right stitch hide behind the middle stitch showing a continuity of the middle stitch from the rows below.  I found this stitch tricky because all the tutorials I found were for right handed knitter, not left handed knitters.  Have no fear, I spent way too much time figuring this out for myself and I gladly share it here with you today.

I warn you this is a multistep stitch, but well worth the time and effort.

If you know knitting terms here are the steps.  If you are unsure about the steps, please follow along below with a picture tutorial and short video at the end.

Slip first stitch as if to purl, slip second stitch as if to purl, put both stitches back on the right hand needle and slip together through the back loops.  Knit the third stitch.  Pass the first and second stitch together over the knit stitch. Continue reading “The Left Handed Central Double Decrease (ccd)”

Left handed SSK- pictures and video

In the last post I showed you how to make the right leaning decrease or k2tog (knit two together).  Today I will show you the the k2tog’s counterpart, the left handed SSK.  For righties these abbreviations tell you what to do when making the stitch:  K2tog=knit two together,  SSK=slip, slip, knit.  I think about these decreases instead in terms of their slant.  So, for me they are the right leaning decrease (k2tog for lefties) and left leaning decrease (ssk for lefties) since the abbreviation does not match how I make the stitch.

Click on any picture to enlarge

Left Handed SSK 1  Left Handed SSK- Step 1

Start by putting your working needle (the left one) two stitches in from the tip of the right needle.

Left handed SSK 2
Another view without the text overlay.

Continue reading “Left handed SSK- pictures and video”