|Originally posted by Mizelenius
This might be OT . . . not sure.
Anyway, who can give me an estimate of how difficult the LTK pattern is for a very, very inexperienced knitter? Will it take me weeks, months, or years to get good enough to make a decent one if I practice regularly?
If I were you, I wouldn't start off with the pattern, but with what we call a swatch. Cast on 30 stitches (see link here (http://www.craftown.com/knitlesson.htm
) if you need help along the way). Knit back and forth on those 25 stitches till you can do it without looking. Believe it or not, that will not take that long - your fingers will learn quickly, I promise. When your swatch is as long as it is wide, bind off (again see picture from link above). Save this swatch!
Next, cast on 30 stitches and knit the first row, pearl the second and repeat until piece is as long as it is wide. Bind off. Now, get out your measuring tape. You want to measure a 4" square (if you've got less than 4" total, do a 2" square) somewhere within your swatch. (See knitty article here on swatching, scroll down to measuring photo: http://www.knitty.com/ISSUEspring03/FEATswatchout.html
). You want to count how many stitches you get to the 4" (2") sample. Theresa's LTS pattern calls for 22 stitches and 30 rows to 4" of knitting. Are you close to that? If you have too few stitches, try a smaller needle, too many stitches (like 24 say) try breathing between each stitch to losen up your tension a bit, if you are at 26 or above, get bigger needles.
Why bother with these steps? For my first two projects, I totally skipped this process - the first thing I made was one of those cute little fruit hats, which would only fit a very, very small teddy bear. The second project was supposed to be a bunting for a 1 month old, but Cate (at a hefty 18 months) still doesn't fit into it. I spent a lot of time and love making those useless projects and I learned my lesson, now I make a swatch.
I also keep my swatches in a bag, so I can go back and look at them if I return to the yarn after an absence or you can eventually sew them all up and make a blanket!
Finally, once you've cast on and bound off a few times, you will have already increased and decreased, so following Theresa's instructions shouldn't be too hard. Again see the first link for a second set of directions.
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