Open New Crafting Doors: 5 New Knitting Techniques for the New Year
We’re coming up on that time of year I hate. Not Christmas—with all its festivities and twinkle lights and food composed of nothing but lipids and carbs—but what comes after. How many times have we all made well-intentioned New Year’s resolutions that are pretty much tossed aside by February 2? This year, I’m trying to do something more positive and less compulsory. Rather than prune myself of bad habits (eat less, exercise more, stop being mean to people even when they deserve it) I’m opting for growth.
While we love to knit, we tend to stay in our wheelhouse, be it socks or garter-stitch shawls or whatever. In 2018, I want to step outside my cozy little box and try new things. Some are challenging, others simply expand my horizons a bit, saying “yes” rather than “no.” Maybe I won’t always like the results, but maybe I’ll find a new obsession. Below are several techniques I aim to try.
To determine if one of these knitting techniques is something you’d like to try, explore the details on Ravelry and in the Interweave store.
• Stranded knitting. I seem to be late to the party with this one; I can’t help but notice that stranded knitting is all over the place on Ravelry. Although I may not be up to Amy Gunderson’s incredible Prairie Wind Cardigan, there are a ton of smaller projects that appeal to me. The Ibex Valley Mittens from the current Winter issue of Interweave Knits are a tasty bite of stranded goodness, and mitten projects are small enough that even a slow knitter like me can finish them while it’s still cold outside.
• Knit a circular-yoke sweater. Another (related) trend for 2018: circular-yoke knitting is something I’ve avoided in the past. Cheryl Chow’s gorgeous Grand Forks Pullover is tempting me to rethink, however.
• Actually seaming a garment. If you are a resolute top-down junkie like me, you understand the feeling of panic accompanying any seamed garment. “What if my seams suck and the sweater doesn’t fit because I can’t try it on as I go? All that work down the drain.” Norah Gaughn’s Big Sur Pullover will hopefully cure me of this malaise. Deliberately oversized and boxy, it has no shaping to bring out my fit-related neuroses. A big plus: simple brioche and just enough grafting make me feel smug when I finally complete it.
• Slip stitch colorwork. Colorwork in general is a strong trend for 2018, and slip stitches create fabulous effects with little effort. Check out General Hogbuffer’s marvelous Slippery Slope Socks. Variegated yarns tend to pool with very mixed results, but combining them with slipped stitches and a neutral contrast color really makes the most of them.
• Working with gradient yarns. This is not so much a technique as it is an exercise in willingness. I’ve resisted the whole ombré/gradient trend up until now. The lovely Reservoir Ridge Cowl makes me rethink, however, especially knit in Freia’s gorgeous ombré colorways. And frankly, looking at knitscene Handmade where this pattern was featured has me vowing to make more in 2018!
Do you have New Year’s knitting resolutions? Share them in our comments section!
Wishing you all a Happy New Year,
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