Beginning to knit

Beginning to Knit: Everything you need to know to go from garter-stitch scarves to your first sweater

Whether you’re a true newbie or a long-time intro-level knitter wanting to expand your skills, the advice and patterns found below will help you go from garter stitch rectangles to knitting your first cables, your first colorwork, and even your first sweater. We’ll be adding to this page over time, so bookmark it and check back often. And please, share it with your friends!


How to learn to knit
5 ways to get started knitting

Best advice for new knitters
10 valuable tips for beginning knitters (plus readers’ advice)

• Getting beyond garter stitch
How to gradually build your knitting skills

• The knitter’s basic tool kit
Some knitting notions to get you started

. . .


How to join a new ball of yarn

How to weave in ends

How to block finished knits

• How to knit a hat: Part 1, Anatomy lessons and Part 2, Gauge and Size

. . .


• Cable patterns for first-timers
How to get started knitting cables — crazy easy and yet so rewarding

Colorwork patterns for first-timers
A few basic tips, plus patterns to get you started

Pullovers for first-timers
An introduction to sweater construction, plus some excellent sweater patterns to start with

Cardigans for first-timers
A look at various button-band approaches, with suggested patterns for each type

How to improvise a top-down sweater
An introduction to the top-down sweater method, which will give you a better understanding of how sweaters work — and enable you to knit your own without a pattern

. . .

Patterns pictured above: TOP LEFT is Lion Brand’s Cable Scarf, a free pattern featured in Cable patterns for first-timers; MIDDLE RIGHT is Dessau Cowl by Carrie Bostick Hoge / Madder, featured in Colorwork patterns for first-timers; BOTTOM LEFT is the Sweatshirt Sweater, a free pattern from the Purl Bee, featured in Pullovers for first-timers

16 thoughts on “Beginning to knit

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  2. This is a great resource and I am happy you took the time to put it together. I also love the images you chose, but the sources of the images (if not your own) are not obvious to your readers. I am sure the photographers are thrilled to be featured here (who wouldn’t!?) but would also like to be credited for their images :)

    • Hi, V. The three that are not mine are promotional photos for featured patterns; only one of the photographers is identifiable, which is Carrie Hoge for her own pattern. But I did mean to cite the patterns, so people don’t have to search through the related posts to find them! That’s been added — thanks for the reminder.

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  4. I have been trying to knit the origami baby booties in deep blue I have seen on your page for my grandson. However he is growing rapidly and would like to ask how you would recommend I increase the size and how to do this in the stitches
    Look forward to your reply


    • It just depends on how big you want them to be. Figure out how big they are with the number of stitches you used, and how many stitches and rows per inch that is. Then increase the number of stitches and rows accordingly to get the dimensions you want.

  5. A thousand thank yous! I’ve been knitting about 1.5 yr (taught myself at 53) and try to make each project teach me something new and yet be something someone would really love to wear. My current project is loads of st st so I’m trying to learn to knit with my “other” hand in preparation for color work. My main goal is to be able to knit sweaters for myself. Anyway, just today I wishing that someone had a list of ways to make progress from beginning to color work and then I listened to an old podcast by The Gentle Knitter (where she just happened to showcase her Plotulopi Sweater, my dream project!) and bragged about your podcast and website so here I am and there you have just what I was looking for. Thank you!

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