When you’re first starting out as a knitter, you’re excited, nervous and kind of happy! Knitting is fun, after all!
But sometimes the nervous side takes over and you start gripping your needles and pulling at your yarn. You’re nervous your stitches will fall off, so you’re being extra careful.
But the problem is that your knitting is so tight you can barely get your needles into the stitches. You’re going to pull a muscle if you don’t take it easy! So whaddya do?
1. Change your gear, change your game Your knitting game, that is! Try using thick wooden or bamboo needles, sized between 7-9mm. Wooden needles are not as slippery as steel or plastic needles, so they’ll help your stitches stay put. Also, try using chunky or bulky weight wool yarn. Wool is not as slippery as, say, acrylic or cotton. It’s “grippier” for lack of a better word.
Avoid using tiny steel needles (a beginner’s worst nightmare!) and/or tiny weight yarn. The combination is too finicky for beginners and your hands will be wrapped around them like claws. Not good.
2. Give the whole needle some love A lot of the times, tight knitters will knit into their stitches using the tip of the needle without letting the stitch slide all the way onto the needle. This doesn’t give the stitch the full width of the needle, only a fraction of its width! That’s why the stitches are so tight. So give it some love and let those stitches get all up on the needle!
3. Practice makes perfect Knitting is a bit like learning a new language for your hands. In the same way that it takes time to be fluent and not mix up verb conjugations or accidentally say things like, “I’m pregnant” instead of “I’m embarrassed” it also takes time for your hands to learn the language of knitting. So give it some time! Try to relax and knit without pressure. If you drop a stitch. Whatevs. Just keep going. Treat this time as a practice session. You’re not working towards a project. You’re just trying to get your hands comfortable around the needle and yarn.