Back to Basics in Knitting

I started knitting in the 10th grade. I bought a “Learn to Knit” kit with the intention of making a scarf for my friend’s birthday. I’d like to say that I was a natural, but I tried and failed time after time to finish that scarf. I didn’t complete it until the following year–at that point she and I weren’t even friends anymore.

Since then I’ve accumulated several sets of knitting needles, project bags, and accessories.  I learned new stitches, practiced new techniques, and tried new patterns.  I’ve wandered through craft stores for hours on end and spent more time untangling yarn than I care to admit. I even got into crochet for a while. The result:

While I enjoyed the learning process for each of these items, I’ve come to realize that what I love the most is getting back to the basics.

More and more I enjoy using simple wool yarn, nothing crazy or fuzzy or unnatural.

My first 5.5mm pair of needles sits on my desk next to the pair of 10mm needles I got in college. The rest of my straight and circular sets are neatly tucked away.

I find myself most attracted to patterns for scarves and hats with variations of the basic knit and purl stitches. I don’t have a desire to knit elaborate cabling or intricate lace or large sweaters or time-consuming socks.


For a while I thought that only knitting scarves and hats was too simple and beginner level, especially when there is so much more for me to learn. But if it’s not fun, then what’s the point? I enjoy the basics, and that’s what I’m sticking with (at least for now).

So, my first new project of 2015 uses 10mm needles, all natural wool yarn, and the basic garter stitch. It’s just fabulous, don’t you think?

How about you? Do you enjoy getting back to basics? Or is your passion fueled by exploring new things? Maybe it’s a mix. Whatever you enjoy, don’t be ashamed of it and don’t ignore it. Embrace what you love and have fun!

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