The Beginners Knitting Glossary

Knitting GlossaryMost knitting patterns use a lot of abbreviations and phrases that only experienced knitters will know. As a beginner knitter, it can be extremely helpful to have a knitting glossary handy to help you read your first few patterns. You shouldn’t need to keep a glossary on hand for too long, since the abbreviations are pretty simple, but it is helpful while you get used to the common knitting terminology. There are countless abbreviations and knitting phrases used in knitting patterns, but as a beginner you will only need to know the most common ones.

Knitting Glossary of Common Abbreviations

While some knitting patterns include a knitting glossary for those new to reading patterns, not all designers think to include one. If you have avoided reading patterns because of the abbreviations in the past, you can now refer to this knitting glossary when you are confused and you’ll be able to complete basic patterns.

Here are some of the most common abbreviations you need to know to read a knitting pattern.

• CO: Cast on
• BO: Bind off
• Beg: Beginning
• CA: Color A
• CB: Color B
• CC: Contrasting color
• MC: Main color
• Ch: Chain (using crochet hook)
• CN: Cable needle
• Cont: Continue
• Dec: Decrease
• DPN’s: Double pointed Needles
• G st: Garter stitch
• Inc: Increases
• K: Knit

read a knitting pattern
• K-wise: Knit wise. (Insert right hand needle into loop as if to knit)
• P-wise: Purl wise. (Insert right hand needle into loop as if to purl)
• RH: Right hand
• LH: Left hand
• K2Tog: Knit 2 together (Decrease)
• P2Tog: Purl 2 together (Decrease)
• M1: Make 1 (Popular increase)
• PM: Place marker
• Rep: Repeat
• Rib: Ribbed Stitch
• YO: Yarn over
• WS: Wrong side
• RS: Right Side

Common Knitting Phrases

Knitting patterns are full of phrases that common people wouldn’t understand. Even if you’ve taught yourself how to knit and never use patterns, you may not know what these phrases and abbreviations mean. Here are some of the most common knitting phrases explained.

• Knit-wise: when you are instructed to insert your needle knit-wise, this means to insert your right hand needle into the first loop on your left hand needle as if you were going to knit. This means that you insert your needle from front to back and left to right.
• Purl-wise: when you are instructed to insert your needle purl-wise, this means that you insert your right hand needle into the first loop on your left hand needle as if you were going to purl. This means that you insert your needle from back to front and right to left.
• Knit 2 Together: Knit 2 together is pretty self explanatory, in that you simply put your right hand needle knit-wise into the first 2 loops on your left hand needle at the same time and perform a knit stitch. This turns 2 stitches into 1.
• Purl 2 Together: Purl 2 together is also pretty self explanatory, in that you insert your right hand needle purl-wise into the first 2 loops on your left hand needle at the same time and perform a purl stitch, so that you turn 2 stitches into 1 purl stitch.
• Make 1: Make 1 is the act of creating a knit stitch where there was no stitch before. To make one, use your left hand needle and grab the bar in between the stitches from front to back. You can then knit with your right hand through the back loop.

This knitting glossary is a basic place to begin. It doesn’t contain every single abbreviation that can be found in knitting patterns; but it does include the most common ones to give you the basic knowledge needed to read your first patterns. Knowing the common knitting phrases and abbreviations can make reading knitting patterns much easier. If you’ve been intimidated to try out knitting patterns because of all of the abbreviations and strange phrases, you have nothing left to fear. By knowing what these abbreviations mean, you’ll be able to move forward with the confidence needed to complete even intricate tasks. If you simply refer to this knitting glossary whenever you come across a new term you’ll have no problems completing a pattern.

Understand the Art of Graffiti Knitting

Graffiti KnittingSince it’s invention eight years ago, graffiti knitting has had many different names. Whether you call it yarn bombing, yarn storming, guerilla knitting, or graffiti knitting, the idea is the same. All of these names describe the art of using something handmade from yarn to create street art, similar to graffiti on walls. However, the difference is, yarn storming is a softer, more cheerful type of graffiti intended to make passers-by smile and remember a simpler time. These graffiti artists, known as yarn bombers, want to bring a personal, friendly touch to industrial and urban surroundings. What began as a few granny squares turned into cozies for street signs has now branched out into something amazing and diverse that has spread worldwide.

Types of Yarn Bombing

Yarn bombing can be done in several different ways. It can be knit, crocheted, or even created on a loom. It can be as simple as knitting a cozy for a telephone pole or as elaborate as crocheting a huge spider web full of victims to attach inside a tunnel. That is the beauty of graffiti knitting, that it is completely individualized, and there is really no way to do it wrong.

Yarn cozies are the most popular and original form of yarn bomb. The idea is attributed to Magda Sayeg because of the doorknob cozy she created to put on the door of her local boutique on a slow day. Passers-by were so excited and interested that it spurred her to make yarn cozies for other things outdoors, starting with a stop sign near her shop and expanding from there. Today, she is so popular as a yarn bombing artist that she has even been commissioned for such projects as creating cozies for the exposed duct-work in’s Brooklyn offices, as well as car “sweaters” that have appeared in many commercials in the last few years.

Another popular form of graffiti knitting is the art of creating stitched stories. These artists use amigurumi, which are stuffed animals and dolls made from knit or crochet, to create stories or landscapes. Some examples of this are the popular giant squid that has been seen on many statues, a spider web full of bugs and fairies and other such creatures, a group of “wild” animals crossing a bridge, a Cheshire cat in a tree, and other similar ideas. These landscape type yarn bombs are usually organized through groups of knitters who all contribute to the larger picture. You can find many examples of this if you look at their blogs, where they document each excursion with photos and videos.


Purpose of Graffiti Knitting

There are many speculations about the purpose of graffiti knitting. Some people feel that this must be some sort of feminist protest. Others believe that there is some sort of hidden message behind these fuzzy squares of yarn. In reality, though, there are no burning bras or picket lines full of protesters carrying posters. As far as anyone can tell, these yarn bombers haven’t made any sort of united message public. Instead, if you search the blogs of various yarn bombing groups, you’ll find the same message over and over. It’s fun! There is an exciting rush to be had by doing something that is technically illegal, even if they almost never get in serious trouble. Most of these artists create their yarn bombs as a way to have fun and loose themselves in a fun hobby. Some do this because they love knitting but feel that they simply can’t knit another sweater. Instead, they turn to something fun and exciting that can be done in a night and make an impact on society at the same time.

While there may be a little bit of a political message behind this yarn-bombing fad, the majority of it is purely an artistic escape for those doing it and nothing more. Whatever the real reason behind this growing art form, it has certainly spurred a larger change in the world. Crafts that were once considered completely outdated are coming back with a vengeance since the beginning of yarn bombing. The younger crowd is now getting into things like canning, gardening, raising chickens, sewing, quilting, crocheting, and knitting, which all used to be considered “grandma crafts.” All of these crafts are now cool and growing in popularity since knitting resurfaced in the form of graffiti knitting.

2 Flat Knitting Definitions You Should Know

begin knitting

When you begin knitting, you soon realize that there is a whole new vocabulary to learn as you go, such as the different flat knitting definitions. Flat knitting is a term used in both hand knitting and industrial knitting to describe a common technique. Of course, depending on what type of knitting you perform, there are different flat knitting definitions. We’ll discuss the two most common definitions in this article in detail.

Flat Knitting Definitions for Hand Knitting

In hand knitting, the term flat knitting refers to a piece of knitting that is turned periodically, usually every row. This technique is also sometimes referred to as back and forth knitting, which is a pretty self-explanatory name. It basically just means that at the end of each row, you turn your work and work backwards until you reach the starting point again. In other words, you work the piece back and forth.

Another way to describe flat knitting is to create a piece of knit fabric that has sides. This can refer to many different types of projects, such as:

• Knit baby blankets
• Knit afghans
• Knit scarves
• Knit throw pillows
• Knit headbands

It can also refer to many other projects, depending on how they are made. For example, while a knit hat is a circular garment, it can be knit flat and then sewn up. Many beginner knitters do this before they feel practiced enough to knit in the round.

Flat knitting

How to Knit Flat

Flat knitting is usually done on two straight needles, although some knitters prefer to work with one set of circular needles instead. The biggest advantage to using circular needles is that you don’t risk losing one of your needles, but it is also easier when working with a large piece of work such as an afghan since circular needles can hold more stitches. Regardless of your needle preference, the technique is still done by turning your work.

The most common stitch in knitting is the stockinette stitch, where all of the little “v’s” are on one side of the fabric. While this is called a knitting stitch, it is actually a stitch combination, since you have to use two different stitches to create the look. These stitches are the knit stitch, and the purl stitch. When looking at the right side of your work, or the side that will face out and be seen, you will use the knit stitch, but once you turn your work, you must use a purl stitch for the next row, since that is basically a knit stitch performed backwards. This allows all of the “v’s” to line up on the right side of the fabric and all of the bumps to line up on the wrong side. This technique provides you with a smooth, elastic finished piece, such as the one commonly seen on sweaters and hats.

Flat Knitting Definitions for Industrial Knitting

While the term flat knitting is pretty self-explanatory when you look at it in terms of hand knitting, it holds a completely different meaning when you consider industrial knitting. Industrial knitting is the process of using knitting machines in order to mass-produce knit material and garments found in stores.

Flat knitting machines use two needle beds to quickly create complex designs and shaped garments for commercial use.

Industrial flat knitting, also referred to as weft knitting, is slower than using a circular knitting machine, but the ability to create more complicated stitch patterns and fitted garments makes up for the lack of speed these machines use.

The advantages of using a flat knitting machine include:

• Flat knitting machines are the most versatile knitting machines available
• Flat knitting machines allow for many different yarns to be used.
• Flat knitting machines are simple to supervise and operate.

As you can see, flat knitting definitions vary depending on the technique you use. As an industrial knitter, using machinery to produce commercial knits, flat knitting refers to what sort of knitting machine is used and what sort of detail can go into your project. For the more common hand-knitter, flat knitting is just the basic knitting. By working back and forth across your rows of knitting, using knit and purl stitches, you can easily master the most common of flat knitting definitions.