overcoming knitting fear

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This is going to be a rectangle.


Its width is 60 cm (23.5 inches). If it were a a bit wider or narrower, that would have been fine.

The 1×1 rib at the bottom is so and so rows, it doesn’t matter really how many, as many as I thought looked nice at the time I was knitting. If I knit up less, or more, that would be just fine too.

The height up to the armhole will be 50-55 cm (19.5-21.5 inches), so that it’ll be a nice tunic length. I measured this length off of a tee I already have. But a shorter or longer length will do as well.

That’s the plan for now: to knit a rectangle.

At the armhole, I’m just going to continue knitting up straight and figure out how to make the neckline. I’ll think about it when I get to it.

Knitting without a knitting pattern terrifies me. It doesn’t matter that I know it shouldn’t be that hard, or that I know how to draft sewing patterns from scratch. I don’t know why, it’s like I think that if I don’t follow a pattern, instead of a tee I might create a monster. It’s an irrational fear.

source: Danger Crafts Maddox Monster Actually, creating a monster might not be so bad.

It also doesn’t matter that I majored in Math in HS and that I have a bachelors degree in computer science, so the arithmetic should be simple for me. Or that there are a million helpful explanations out there in blogs, books, videos, and what not. I am scared like a cat at the sound of a rustling plastic bag at the thought that I have to make actual decisions about measurements and “design elements”. I am scared to the point that I can’t do it.

So I decided to take it one step at a time. Step 1 – make a rectangle. Actually, step 1 was to make the swatch, so that I could tell how many stitches are needed to make a 60 cm wide rectangle. In my case, the answer was 144, because in my swatch, there were 24 stitches in 10 cm. More or less. So there are 24×60/10=144 stitches in 60 cm. This is knit fabric, and an oversize tee. It will forgive me my mistakes. I keep telling myself that.

I might knit up the top part (starting at some point above the armhole) in a different pattern, maybe something like this one.


I’m knitting the back and the front separately, and I will seam them together. At least I’m not afraid of seaming knit garment pieces! Thank wool for that. There are several reasons why I’m making this a pieced tee:

  • because breaking up the garment into its constituent parts makes it less scary.
  • because the book I got from which I want to learn more teaches how to make knitting patterns using pieced knitting, and when I am less scared I want to follow that book.
  • and maybe most importantly, because you can make the same knit garment in a variety of ways: top down, bottom up, side to side – and I want to take that complexity out of the equation. After I’m comfortable with pieced garment making, I think it’ll be easier to tackle different ways that that same garment could be constructed.

Are you intimidated by some aspect of knitting? Do you want to join me in overcoming at least a small part of that fear? If so I would be happy to support you, and to have your support. To know that I’m not the only person out there with this irrational fear. Maybe we can help each other through it. Leave me a comment, or drop me an email, if you are so inclined.

One thought on “overcoming knitting fear

  1. Pingback: fails | now I knit

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