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Topic: Loose vs. tight knitting  (Read 1222 times)
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Flapperjakk
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« on: December 06, 2004 01:50:35 PM »

How can you determine whether you're a tight or a loose knitter?
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« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2004 03:34:47 PM »

I'd think that you'd be able to tell by looking....

But if you really want to tell... look at the label on your yarn. It should tell you the gauge...  something like 15 stitches/4inch square ...  it should also suggest a needle size.

Use the needles and knit up a swatch...  and then measure.  If you have more stitches then you knit tight, if you have fewer, then you knit loosely.

Hope that helped
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flamgirlant
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« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2004 05:54:57 PM »

I used to be a tight knitter but have learned to loosen up.  The way I found that out was to knit a purse out of strips of plastic grocery bags.  At first I was knitting so dang tightly, I was really struggling with it.  Once I loosened up, it went much easier.  Since then (the project took a while -- it was a fairly large bag knitted on #9's) I've loosened up. 

I'm sure that doesn't help you at all, but if you're up for it, try knitting with plastic bags.  You'll find out soon enough if you're a tight knitter.
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starlings
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2004 07:03:57 PM »

While the gauge recommended on the ballband gives you a ballpark figure, I don't think you should take it as gospel. Most recommended gauges are simply too loose to result in an optimum fabric.

Anyway - tight or loose relative to what? Most importantly, you should be able to knit comfortably, without a struggle. Your stitches should move easily along the needle without sliding right off. You should be able to work the stitches with relaxed hands, and without having to force the needle into each stitch. If you concentrate on staying relaxed, with your hands as low as possible and working as close to the tip of the needle as possible, with economical movements, you'll find you're own ideal tension.
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Flapperjakk
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« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2004 08:12:56 PM »

That's exactly how I knit... I was just wondering because I went into a yarn store the other day and overheard a knitting class going on while i was shopping for wool. the instructor asked the woman if she was a "tight or loose knitter". The woman didn't really know how to respond, so she said "well, I think I'm both", and the instructor said, "that's what most people say... " I didn't stay long enough to overhear much else... so it just made me wonder, because I'd answer the same way! ;x)

Thanx for all your responses!  Cheesy
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ultraviolet
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2004 06:53:25 AM »

I don't FEEL like I knit tightly, but apparently I do. I pretty much always use needles 2 sizes larger than patterns recommend. At least I'm consistent, which makes it easier to know where to start when I'm making a gauge swatch.
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« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2004 01:41:41 PM »

Yeah, I think knowing whether you are a relatively loose knitter or a relatively tight knitter is only useful when you're deciding what size needles to start with when knitting your gauge swatch.  For example, since I usually knit really loosely, I know if a pattern calls for a size 7US needles, I will start with my 3's and probably get gauge.
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