Half Continental

NonStopAndrew's picture

I knit in a very odd way, I call it half continental. I have the yarn in my left hand, and throw it with my left hand as well. So it is not english, and not continental....somewhere half way there. I have found it is really slow, though my knitting is very nice looking. Now I have been trying to knit in the normal continental style, and my tension has gone out the window. It is very lose and I have no idea how to fix this. Any suggestions on keeping it tight? I am knitting a scarf longways in an attempt to get my gauge to work properly...not working so far.

In other news, the choir I am in in is singing at the National Music Educators Association NW Division Conference in Spokane, WA this weekend. I am amazed that anyone would have a convention on V-Day weekend. We get to leave at 6 am on Friday and are singing at two highschools on our way up there. It is only a six hour drive. I am sad though, we will miss a lot of the really good sessions and performances because of the distance we have to travel. It anyone is a NMEA member they can come see us sing, but otherwise I think everyone is out of luck. My parents have not yet been able to hear me sing this year.


scottly's picture

I was told recently that it takes about six months for you to adjust to a new knittting technique. When I first switched to continental my stitches were way loose as well but in time the guage worked itself out, so now I have no problem. And... it took about six months to happen. I knit a lot of socks and you want socks to be knit tighter then say a scarf, so that might have helped me tighten up my general knitting. In the mean time you can do what I did an just use needles a size or two smaller then what's called for.

QueerJoe's picture

Thanks for posting this Andrew. I knit exactly like you (what you call half Continental), and I've never been a very fast knitter.

A number of times I've tried to switch to true continental and I have the exact same issue as you with tension that is way too loose. I have tried winding the yarn around fingers in ways I've watched in videos, but it is almost painfully uncomfortable.

Maybe Scottly is right and I just have to force myself to keep knitting the way I want to get to, but I will probably wait until I'm working on a project I don't care much about...lol.

mrossnyc's picture

When I learned to knit, I learned Continental but have felt that my tension was too tight due to the way I wrapped the yarn around my finger. Recently though, I've been trying a different method that I saw on the knitpicks site. There were some videos of the fastest knitter and she describes how she holds the yarn. I'm nowhere near as fast as she is, but I have increased the speed of my knitting and my tension is more regular. Good luck with it, but give it time as well.

thairapist's picture

I used to knit that way. Took me a few years to break the habit. It does make purling easier so i resort to that when i purl. You can get pretty fast but i got tired of the comments so i practiced using my left index finger now i wrap the yarn around my ring finger and then put my index finger under the yarn and use it to lift the yarn over the needle. I can go pretty fast now.
Thanks for posting that