Friday, October 10, 2008

Two Colors, Two Hands?

When I saw that Blazing Needles was offering a "Basic Two Color Knitting" class, I decided that the time had come (as the Walrus said) to learn how. I called up, signed up and showed up Wednesday night.

Now, I've got to say that I am right handed. Been right handed all my life. Though I'm neither hopelessly unidextrous like my Mom nor ambidextrous like Dad and my brother (Dad can wiggle his ears too), I definitely favor my right hand. Which, to me, makes it rather surprising that I cannot knit English style. I am simply unable to purl if I'm holding the yarn in my right hand; it makes no sense to me.

Left handed -- easy-peasy.

So I got to the class, pulled out my number 7 circular and dpns and selected two shades of practice yarn. Then the teacher, Terri, gave us the bad news...

We had to learn to knit using both hands.


Main color in dominant hand, second color in other hand. Alternating. Not dropping the whole assemblage.


First Terri set us to knitting several rounds of the main color with our "other" hand for practice. Thank goodness there was no purling involved. The other students were somehow able to toss the yarn over the needle without swinging their whole arm. Not me. I had to pinch the yarn between thumb and forefinger and move the hand in a circle around the needle. I tried to do it like the rest of them, but that was a sure recipe for dropping at least the yarn if not yarn, needles and all.

After I'd managed to knit about three rounds, the teacher announced that it was time to take main color in dominant hand, other color in other hand and knit two, knit two.

Evil Language!

How could it be so hard when I'm right handed?

But I persevered. It wasn't easy, but I did manage to knit with two colors, one in each hand.

Then I went on and committed cute. (I'm so ashamed.)

Ah well, at least I know a four year old who probably needs a dolly hat.


Iron Needles said...

Ahhhhh! Color knitting! You are one up one me. See, I only knit with the right hand. Maybe I will put that on my list of things to do for next year.

And that is one cute hat, for a very small head...

AlisonH said...


I knit grabbing the yarn each stitch, and have no trouble knitting with two colors. But then I watch how other people do it, and I am in awe--I could never do that!