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Arts & crafts

Teaching GD to Knit

(29 Posts)
Pippa000 Thu 04-Jun-15 09:13:11

My 5 year old ( just) GD watches me knit and wants to learn. Any hints would be gratefully received as to how to teach her. I have forgotten how I was taught but think I was older. She watched me for ages but can't quite grasp the basics.

Liz46 Thu 04-Jun-15 09:58:22

I have been through this (there was a recent thread about it). In the end my GD found crocheting easier. I am not as good at crocheting as knitting but bought a simple book and am trying to keep one step ahead of her. She stayed last weekend and proudly went home with a crochet basket containing sweets for her mum. A few very helpful gransnetters recommended sites for patterns. The only thing is that American terms are different to English ones.

granjura Thu 04-Jun-15 10:25:33

Agree, crochet is much easier to teach/learn at that age. If you try knitting, make sure the needles are short and the wool neither too thin or too thick, and does not split easily. I knit the Swiss/German way- so not sure it is a good idea to teach her my way. We wrap the needles around the wool, and not the wool around the needle the UK way (lots of arm flapping ;) )

Gagagran Thu 04-Jun-15 10:31:54

I bought simple knitting kits for two of my DGDs Christmas 2013 and taught them both by sitting them in front of me so my arms and hands came round their sides and to the front. They could put their hands over mine till they got the idea. I also used the rhyme that I was taught to knit with:

Under the bridge
Over the bridge
Through the bridge
And off

It's just practice after that and rescuing their dropped stitches! (Lots!)

I knitted my first wearable garment - a DK jumper when I was 12 and My Dad bet me 10/- I couldn't! Good luck though I think 5 is too young - they don't have the manual dexterity at that age.

Liz46 Thu 04-Jun-15 10:44:05

I agree. I started to try and teach my GD to knit when she was about 5 and it was too young. She has taken to the crocheting though and 'borrowed' the book that I bought. Aldi and The Works have cheap instruction books for knitting and crochet and they are very good.

Pippa000 Thu 04-Jun-15 11:30:39

Many thanks for all the suggestions, I do also crochet, well used to but have not done any for ages, so may have to have a quick revision and then start her on easy things.

crossstitchgill Fri 14-Aug-15 15:54:31

Recently I showed my nearly-6-year-old grandson how to knit with a kit of a Highland coo sent down by his other Granny. He mentioned that he had enjoyed it and would like to do some more. I have been looking for beginners' kits but they have all been pink and for girls. Does anybody know of anything for boys? I am sure lots of boys would like to knit.

Wheniwasyourage Fri 14-Aug-15 17:28:20

3 of my DGC have asked to learn to knit and I said they should wait until they were 5. Then they got it slowly, but they don't get much practice as I keep their knitting and we don't see them that often (I keep it as none of their parents are knitters and so couldn't pick up the dropped stitches or get rid of the extra ones which appear from nowhere!).

For some reason, and it isn't practice (see above), DGD and DGS2 both suddenly got a lot more proficient at about the age of 8,while DGS5 is still very slow at the age of 6. I do think, therefore, that perhaps 5 is too young, but on the other hand, you don't want to put them off if they want to try.

I used much the same method as Gagagran, although had never heard of the bridges, and so just said what I was told by my mother, "in, over, through, off".

annodomini Fri 14-Aug-15 17:45:55

crossstitchgill, I was thinking about teaching my GSs to knit and the only kit I found on Amazon without pink yarn was this one. However, there's a decent knitting shop in the town where they live, so I can take them to choose their own yarn.

grannyisland Sat 15-Aug-15 18:09:56

crossstitchgill look on Ravelry for easy patterns and Google search for 25g balls of yarn - much cheaper than a kit. Deramores do Patons Fab for 89p a ball.

grannyisland Sat 15-Aug-15 18:14:26


Gagamarnie Sun 16-Aug-15 13:23:35

I remember being taught to knit at school. We used big wooden needles and the first thing I knitted was a dishcloth, of which my dear Mum was very proud (but I don't think ever used!). Now I want to teach my GD aged 6 to knit but can't find suitable needles for small beginners. Any ideas, Gransnetters?

Falconbird Sun 16-Aug-15 13:29:27

My first piece of knitting was when I was about 6. It was bright red wool and I was so proud of it I took it to school in a small suitcase.

I go to a Knit and Natter Group where I do crochet because my hands are painful now from RSI.

I'm hoping to teach my gd to knit and crochet soon but she's only 4 so not quite ready and she's also left handed which might be tricky.

Persistentdonor Sun 16-Aug-15 13:43:07

Re teaching left handers: Try using a large mirror and the child does NOT watch you, but watches what you are doing in the mirror.
I have not actually tried this, but have been told it works. Good luck. smile

Persistentdonor Sun 16-Aug-15 13:48:54

Falcon bird: "...when I was about 6. It was bright red wool and I was so proud of it I took it to school in a small suitcase." This is SO SWEET.

I remember my very first knitting was a dish cloth for my grandma, but then I fell in love with some white wool with blue and scarlet flecks in it. I used it to make some baby mittens, and cords to tie them. I passed a Brownie badge with them, so they must have been good enough!

Persistentdonor Sun 16-Aug-15 13:51:07

Interestingly, the photo leading to this thread shows Continental style with the wool held in the left hand.

mrsmopp Sun 16-Aug-15 14:34:34

I began with a wooden cotton reel with four pins at the top- the work came out like a long cord. We called it cork work but I think there are similar kits available, and may be good for a child who is a bit young to manage two needles. Just a an idea to consider as we used to love doing it and progressed to knitting when we were ready.

lindarumsey Sun 16-Aug-15 15:04:09

I taught my daughter to knit when she was seven, using Pony short needles that are designed for children. But when she was five I gave her a French knitter so she still had the fun of using yarn and a needle and helped her sew the coils into jewellery.

lindarumsey Sun 16-Aug-15 15:04:59

Just seen mrsmopp's post above!

Charleygirl Sun 16-Aug-15 15:05:54

I am left handed and was taught to knit by right handers and it did not work, I soon gave up.

sherish Sun 16-Aug-15 15:17:05

I am also left handed but was tuaght how to knit by by mum who was also left handed but knitted right handed. It means there wasn't any problems following instructions or charts. I still knit the same as a right hander now although I crochet left handed.

Falconbird Sun 16-Aug-15 16:05:32

Persistendonor Thanks for the tip about the mirror, I might try this when the time comes. smile

I knew someone who was left handed and learnt to crochet and knit right handed. In fact she did everything right handed except cutting bread!

TendringGran Sun 16-Aug-15 17:39:51

I taught all the grandchildren, girls and boys, to knit, but don't expect it to be a one-off event. We were at it from about age five to eight or nine. I found it easiest to stand behind them with them in a low back chair and "work" their hands. The one who has stayed with it has worked out how she prefers to hold the wool and needles.

Royandsyl Sun 16-Aug-15 18:41:10

It was very hard to teach my GD to knit. She is left handed. However I persuaded her mum to try to teach her. She is right handed but eats the left handed way! Rachael was able to teach her!! My late husband learned to knit when he was 8 and knitted scarves for the forces during world war 2. He wasn't rhe only boy who did this.
Good luck with the knitting.


Auntieflo Sun 16-Aug-15 23:00:12

I have just noticed that the knitter in the picture leading this thread is using double ended needles. I found using these very useful for knitting things that needed just a small number of stitches. You can probably still get these needles in several sizes, and the bigger ones would be best for small hands. If you wrap an elastic band around one end of each needle, the new knitter won't lose any stitches off the end.