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Topic: Survey: Continental vs. English  (Read 18801 times)
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erincatherine
« on: October 15, 2005 10:04:15 PM »

This may be only interesting to me, or discussed prior/somewhere else, but I have noticed I am one of the very few (American) knitters of my age group (25-and up/down) who knits English-style. After some consideration, we (being a Continental knitter friend and I) have decided that it is because my grandmother, who is Australian, taught me how to knit, and she is, technically, of English (British) descent, being that she, like most non-native Australians, traces her lineage back to England.  I honestly didnt know there was another way until a year or two ago, 15 years after she first taught me how to knit.  I would never change, partially as an homage to her and her awesomeness and craftiness (she taught me how to knit, crochet and sew) and partially because I tried continental, and well, can't get the hang of it.

Also, I was watching a re-run of Knitty Gritty the other day and the woman who wrote the Kniters Companion was on and she knocked English style as being slow and all-around the lesser way of knitting. (Quite offensive if you ask me).
So, I was wondering if "English" really matters. And what is the preferred method (all ages) in the US and abroad.  (This "British" theory also may be totally wacko and off base and have nothing to do with it....)

1.Where do you live?
2.What style do you prefer?
3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?)
4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why?

Just a little survey to get to some Anthropology of this wonderfully addictive and awesome hobby we all share. If this takes off I will try to post the results after a good ammt. comes in.  One of the things I love about knitting is that my grandmother taught me. It makes me really appreciate the history behind crafts and "women's work" and how they have been passed down through the generations for centuries. (And how so much has changed since my Nana was 25 in regards to gender roles and what qualifies as "art", mainly for the better.) Craftster and these forums are just a huge, multi-continental extention of that.
Thanks!
K
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« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2005 04:39:36 AM »

1.Where do you live? England
2.What style do you prefer? British/right-handed
3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?) My grandma taught me the knit stitch the English way (she's a Chinese lady from Malaysia who emigrated here) and a Finnish friend of mine taught me the Continental Purl stitch.
4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why? Yeah - I tried the Continental way and though it was faster, it REALLY made my fingers hurt; knitting that way meant that I couldn't stretch my fingers out. And I did this because the Finnish friend is a bloody control freak and forced me to.  Angry (Incidently, we're not good friends anymore -- but not because of the knitting..because of the control-freak thing..)
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Annkari
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2005 05:31:32 AM »

1.Where do you live?  Germany

2.What style do you prefer?  continental

3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?)  my  (German) mother, and later we were taught knitting in school, too.

4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why?  Yes, I've tried to knit English because I want to be able to knit without turning my knitting, and it would come in handy for fair isle knitting. But I'm still very slow when I knit English, and I have problems with my tension.
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ilovepaper
« Reply #3 on: October 16, 2005 06:00:01 AM »

1.Where do you live? USA

2.What style do you prefer?   English

3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?)  my  (French) husband.... yes you read correctly, my husband! He learned from his French Grandmother. My mother knits continental and I wasn't able to learn from her.  Undecided

4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why?   Yes, I've tried to knit Continental but it feels all wrong and I make too many mistakes. I wanted to try because it was supposed to be faster. 

I saw that Knitty Gritty (I love this show!) episode and felt a little offended too.
I have learned a lot of techniques from watching Knitty Gritty, things I wasn't able to "get" from written instructions.
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yahaira
« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2005 06:38:22 AM »

1.Where do you live?  USA

2.What style do you prefer?   English

3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?)  my boyfriend's mother (american, but of Italian heritage).  She taught me the basics and the rest I learned from books.

4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why?   I'm trying to learn Continental because it seems faster and it doesn't strain your right wrist as much, but I dont really get how to control the yarn.  I absolutely hate it for purling. So eventually I hope to do my knits in the continental way and purl in english (for stockinette stitch).  Funny thing is, that I only learned the English way because it said to knit with your right hand, the book made it sound like continental was for lefties only.
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strangerthanyou
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2005 06:46:52 AM »

1.Where do you live? MD, USA
2.What style do you prefer? Continental
3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?) I learned from books. At first, I only knit English, because the book I had only taught that way (it was for kids). Then, when I found another one, I tried Continental, and it was much easier for me.
4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why? Continental seemed a lot easier to me, but that might be also because I was only just starting to knit, so I didn't know either very well. Now, I can barely knit English (this post made me try), I'm very slow.
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« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2005 06:47:56 AM »

1.Where do you live? the southern US.
2.What style do you prefer?English
3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?) My 3rd grandmother and sweet neighbor Roxy.  Her ethnic background is very german.
4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why?  I am fully capable of knitting in both styles with speed and efficiency.  I can even knit backwards.  But I still prefer the English style because of the uniform tension it gives me and because it feels the most natural since I learned it first.
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Horse Power
« Reply #7 on: October 16, 2005 06:58:47 AM »

1.Where do you live? Southeastern US (Florida)
2.What style do you prefer? English
3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?) My mother (French and Swedish ancestors)
4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why? I tried out Continental for curiosity sake and couldn't do it, I'm really not interested in switching.
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« Reply #8 on: October 16, 2005 07:07:43 AM »

1.Where do you live? Manitoba, Canada

2.What style do you prefer? Continental

3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?) My mom. German.

4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why? No, it's always been continental. English looks slow to me and I'm used to holding my yarn the continental way because I started out crocheting.
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Mojo
« Reply #9 on: October 16, 2005 07:17:59 AM »


1.Where do you live? Providence, RI

2.What style do you prefer? Continental

3.Who taught you how to knit? (do you know their lineage?) Learned to knit from a book but my aunt taught me crochet.

4. Have you tried, successfully or not, to change styles throughout your knitting life? If yes, why? No, in fact, I wasn't sure what English knitting was till I looked it up!
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