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What age were your grandchildren when you taught them to knit?

(34 Posts)
penguinpaperback Sun 17-Nov-13 23:20:56

My 2 grandchildren would like me to teach them to knit. They are 4 and 6. Is this too young? I was thinking of using wooden needles so not too slippery and size 6-7mm. Garter stitch scarves for dolls and teddies. We have made lots of pom poms together, have cross stitched coasters, bookmarks. Any advice or your experience of teaching children to knit would be most

grannyactivist Mon 18-Nov-13 02:43:01

Not too young at all penguin. My son started to knit just before his 7th birthday. I still have his first practice piece that was supposed to be a square, but ended up as a perfectly shaped cape for his teddy bear. He's nearly 22 now and his most recent project was to design and knit some beautifully patterned cushion covers. (Twin stags on one side and a snowflake pattern on the reverse.)
Perhaps start with teaching the basic stitches and doing a tension square, then I agree with going on to knit a simple scarf for teddy.

thatbags Mon 18-Nov-13 06:23:17

I learned when I was four. Taught my elder DD's when they were five. So, no, it's not too young if they want to learn.

Nelliemoser Mon 18-Nov-13 06:28:28

I am ashamed I never taught my children to knit, not that DD was interested. She has just borrowed some needles and yarn so she can try.

My Dad knitted both my children baby cardigans.

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 10:48:14

Thank you for your replies. flowers
grannyactivist the covers your son has designed and knit sound fabulous.
And thank you Nelliemoser I shall mention your Dad along with grannyactivist's son as grandson asked please could he learn or do only ladies knit?
thatbags thank you, yes they are very keen to learn. My goodness I think 4 is the youngest age I have ever heard for learning to knit. My grandmother taught me when I was about 7 and I returned to knitting after many years away. But I could not imagine not having something on the needles now.
I have quite a few odd balls of bright colours for the GC to choose from.

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 10:51:46

Sorry I forgot to say I hope your DD enjoys knitting Nelliemoser.

glammanana Mon 18-Nov-13 11:00:00

I taught Abigail when she was 7/8 and she has made some hats and scarves for her dolls and just this last weeks has been making hats for smoothie bottles,her brother was so interested that he asked me to show him and he was 12 at the time,he ended up doing a Dr.Who type scarf and still uses it now.

Lilygran Mon 18-Nov-13 11:03:06

DGS were 10 and 7 when they learned to knit. Garter stitch. They had already tried French knitting and were feeling ambitious. They really liked knitting with multi coloured wool better than plain.

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 11:13:20

Thank you glammanana I have bought a couple of the bottles with lovely little hats. DGD has them on two tiny twin dolls. smile
There were a huge number of Dr Who fans asking the BBC for the Dr Who knitting pattern at one time. One fan had lots of Dr Who episodes on an old video cassette and freeze framed all the scarf appearances to make sure she had all the colours knitted in the correct order. smile

tanith Mon 18-Nov-13 11:17:54

I tried with my granddaughter last Winter she was 7 but she lost interest very quickly.. she's not very patient and couldn't quite get the hang of pulling the thread through there were more holes than knitting but I'm going to give it another go the Winter... fingers crossed she's learnt some patience..grin

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 11:19:52

Oh yes I have some lovely little wooden people, I keep them on display as a little family, we have used for French knitting Lilygran. Multi coloured wool would make some little teddy scarves more interesting. Thank you. flowers

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 11:22:39

That was my concern tanith I wanted my knitting to 'grow' quickly at 7. Hope you have better luck this time.

Gagagran Mon 18-Nov-13 11:44:46

I've got 2 basic knitting kits tucked away ready for Christmas and hope to teach DGDs aged 11 and nearly 9, when they come to stay as both are into craft things. We'll see if they have the patience!

I was taught to knit by a very dear Great-Aunt, ex-teacher (who also taught me to read) by the rhyme:

under the bridge
over the bridge
through the bridge
and off

It worked well as a teaching aid and I often found myself saying it under my breath for years afterwards!

ninathenana Mon 18-Nov-13 13:12:21

Oldest grandchild is 4y.o. boy so haven't tried yet.
It took me 20+ yrs to teach DD. Her excuse being, she's left handed.

penguinpaperback Mon 18-Nov-13 21:22:50

Thank you for the rhyme Gagagran I will give it a try especially as it worked well for you.
I have read on the forums it's harder to teach a left handed knitter for 20+ years of teaching your DD. smile

Flowerofthewest Mon 18-Nov-13 22:02:22

My (then) DGD was 7. Have some lovely photos of tongue out with concentration.

Maywalk Mon 18-Nov-13 22:42:23

I was taught to knit in the 1930s and it came in handy for knitting balaclavas and mittens for the troops because I was 9 when W.W.2 started. We had to make do and mend then by unravelling old jumpers cardigans and whatever else that was grown out of. More so when everything went on coupons.

I cant hold big things now like I used to so I just stick to baby clothes that dont take too much effort.
I still have needles and patterns from W.W.2.
Been asked endless times for the snood pattern that was worn during the war years.
This is from my website showing the snood as we called it then.

penguinpaperback Tue 19-Nov-13 01:04:39

What sweet pictures they must be Flowerofthewest. smile
Thank you for the link to your website Maywalk. Fascinating and so many styles from the 30's-60's are back in vogue with young knitters looking for retro clothes and knits.

MargaretX Tue 19-Nov-13 10:07:28

As I live in Germany this is difficult because Germans knit differently. They catch the wool with the left needle - a bit like crochet. We Brits wind the wool over with the right hand. I left the teaching of knitting to the school.
where my daughters learned to knit there in handiwork lessons.
My GDs are beginning to knit aged 10 and 7.
There has been huge upsurge of interest in knitting especially hats and scarves.
Don't forget to look at designs for knitters all over the world.

penguinpaperback Tue 19-Nov-13 11:18:49

Thank you MargaretX I've added DROPS to my pattern folder.
I'm quite a slow knitter and an Italian friend used to whizz along using the method your daughters were taught in school.
Hope your GD's are enjoying their knitting. flowers

grannyactivist Tue 19-Nov-13 20:58:18

Have put up a couple of photo's of my son's knitted cushion in the Picture thread. smile

Agus Tue 19-Nov-13 21:16:27

I taught GD1 to knit last year when she was 7. GD2 who was then 3 was quite happy with small wooden needles and a large ball of wool, told us she was busy knitting and the result looked like a pile of spaghetti on her lap.

Tried a few times to teach both DDs to knit and crochet but they didn't enjoy it so my hopes are now pinned on GDs.

Notso Tue 19-Nov-13 21:23:31

I'm teaching my 5 & 7 year old grandsons to sew and knit. They're both very keen, especially with sewing. I love the bridge rhyme!

MargaretX Tue 19-Nov-13 21:48:59

The continental method of knitting is very fast and they whizz away on anything on 4 needles as well, but then suffer a lot from tension in the arms and shoulders. Our method is more relaxing but slower.
The whole of the Americas knit like we do in the UK.

Brendawymms Tue 19-Nov-13 22:30:21

As a left handed knitter (. I am left handed and knit) I can say it's no different than right handed other than the relative importance given to each needle. I have taught quite a few left handlers to knit. Afterwards they wonder what all the fuss was about