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Am I too old to learn to knit? ( 57 )

(91 Posts)
Kandinsky Thu 29-Jul-21 07:44:18

I’ve always envied people who are great at knitting and sewing. I never learnt as a child but have always had a desire to knit something simple like a hat grin
Can I learn at my age?
Is it hard?

Grandmajean Thu 29-Jul-21 07:49:48

Absolutely not too old. It is a great hobby.
You will find loads of help online but if you can get a real person to start you off it would be easier. I taught my DIL some years ago . Start with something very easy like a scarf. Some patterns which claim to be for beginners are not that simple. Good luck

fairfraise Thu 29-Jul-21 07:56:49

Just make sure you have the right size needles and type of wool for any pattern you find. Youtube can be very helpful. It's very relaxing once you get into it.

Sar53 Thu 29-Jul-21 07:58:37

Anyone can learn to knit, it just takes patience and time.
As Grandmajean says try and find someone to start you off.
Knitting is very relaxing.
The best of luck.

Harris27 Thu 29-Jul-21 08:02:02

Definitely not. I learnt when I was 18 and I’ve loved this hobby for years. Agree with others get someone to show you usually a little wool shop has people that will help. Better than Prozac is knitting!

MawBe Thu 29-Jul-21 08:07:50

Of course not!
Some people swear by YouTube videos and they can be useful, but a “Stitch n Bitch” or similar class might be more fun.
If you have a wool shop near you ask there, they are usually run by people who love knitting and crochet and you will learn more quickly with support plus company.

Sara1954 Thu 29-Jul-21 08:12:39

My daughter and I learned to crochet about five years ago, using books and YouTube.
I can’t, and don’t really want, to make anything too complicated, but I’ve made dozens of colourful throws, some quite ambitious, including one for our super king size bed.
I love it, really relaxing.

CafeAuLait Thu 29-Jul-21 08:22:37

You're never too old. One day I might even teach myself. :-)

ginny Thu 29-Jul-21 08:27:39

Never too old to learn anything. I taught myself to crochet from books and YouTube about 7 years ago, aged 59.
As others have said look for
a local group. People are always happy to pass on skills.
Enjoy !

muse Thu 29-Jul-21 08:28:31

Never ever too old to learn a new skill. Hope you enjoy it. Look for a local knitting group. They love welcoming someone to their knitting world. Good chat too.

Flexagon Thu 29-Jul-21 08:38:29

I learned as a child and have been knitting for almost sixty years. I have taught many adults so you are not too old.

You will get lots of advice here so if I can just add that the yarn and knitting needles you work with can make a huge difference to how enjoyable knitting is.

Cheaper acrylic years can be sticky and and "squeak" as you knit, Cheaper needles tend to have a less sharp points making it harder to get the needle through stitches especially if you tend to being a tighter knitter. Some people tend naturally to knit tightly and some more loosely.

Most patterns in double knit (DK) yarn will call for a 3.25mm needle for ribbing and 4mm for the body of the garment. You could get going with some cheap needles and acrylic yarn from the market but I would advise spending a little more on some better quality needles and (perhaps) some yarn with at least some wool content to make the whole experience more enjoyable.

Knit Pro Zing metal needles are my go to needles as they have sharp points which glide through yarn. Cascade 220 Superwash is 100% wool and comes in a wide range of colours. The best bargain acrylic yarn to work with (imo) is Stylecraft Special DK which also comes in a wide range of colours. You could make a hat for an average size head from one ball of that. You'd need two of the Cascade. Allow say 250-300 metres for a hat in DK.

Wool Warehouse is the most comprehensive online store for UK knitters.

Ravelry is a fantastic online community for knitters with lots of resources.

Kandinsky Thu 29-Jul-21 08:41:50

Oh thank you all so much for your replies, tips, & encouragement!
I can’t wait to start!

timetogo2016 Thu 29-Jul-21 08:58:24

Go for it Kandinsky,and show us your hat when it`s done.

Grandmajean Thu 29-Jul-21 09:49:04

Here's another tip from me that won't be everyone's cup of tea but I think is great. When I was a young teacher there was another on our staff who had married a Norwegian and knitted the Norwegian way - circular needle ! She taught us that you can go back and forth just like with two pins but everything is on just one ! I have never used two pins since then. She was one of those girls who had such clever fingers she could do anything. I remember somebody gave her an old piece of fur and she made a fabulous hat ! She had the whole staff room ( at lunch break - we were allowed them in those dayssmile ) knitting , sewing etc.

Savvy Thu 29-Jul-21 10:00:43

My grandmother was very skilled with a needle, could make anything with fabric and no pattern needed, she could crochet almost anything you wanted, but didn't learn to knit until she was in her 70s.

You are never too old to learn a new craft.

Lovetopaint037 Thu 29-Jul-21 10:11:54

My SIL is disabled but needed to do something. So she knits blankets for The Dog Trust. She acquires cheap wool and knits in all sorts of colours. You could practise using different basic stitches. You could do stocking stitch which is one row plain, one row purl or plain knitting, box stitches which is just making so many stitches plain and so many purl and carrying on for the same number of rows, then changing to repeat same in reverse. Comes out as little alternate squares. Best of luck.

Callistemon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:19:34

I taught myself how to crochet about 3 years ago and I bet I'm much older than you Kandinsky.

An old family member tried to teach me but she went so fast I couldn't pick it up so followed books and YouTube.

Now I must progress to more difficult stitches and will look on YouTube again.

It's never too late!

Callistemon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:21:01

Ps for knitting I like KnitPro needles, they are a bit expensive but lovely to use.

Flexagon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:21:14

Yes, Grandmajean. I do that too if I am knitting something heavy so that my lap takes the weight rather than my wrists or for lace knitting with several hundred stitches.

However, I'd still suggest learning with two needles as it helps with tension. Having stitches strung across a central cable and having to move them back and forth across cable and rigid points can stretch out the the cast on stitches leaving loops between.

Knitting is such an adaptable craft, isn't it? As a child, I learned to knit gloves, mittens and socks on four needles. Nowadays I still like to knit socks - nowadays from the toe up. Judy's Magic Cast On was a revelation to me. I use it with a circular needle for the cast on and toe but once past the toe, divide the stitches onto four needles and knit with a fifth. Old habits can die hard. It can be like wrestling with a porcupine but I enjoy it!

I'd also like to see Kandinsky's hat when it's finished - or even when it's a WIP (Work in Progress) to see how she's getting on.

Callistemon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:23:59

Pps and try to choose a yarn which doesn't split.

For acrylics the Hobbycraft WI yarn is good and they also do a pure wool WI yarn too (3 for 2 as well).

Callistemon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:28:48

I've just realised that you're only 57, Kandinsky

The world is your oyster!!

Flexagon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:45:05


Johnny Vasquez's You Tube channel Knitiversity (formerly New Stitch a Day) is good for learning new stitches.

Knitting Fool is a good stitch directory with written instructions.

I'm a big fan of Knit Pro needles. I have a set of Nova interchangeable double-pointed with cables and like Zings for straight knitting. However, for fine lace I prefer Addi.

Callistemon Thu 29-Jul-21 10:56:51

Thank you!

Doodledog Thu 29-Jul-21 11:06:23

I always use circular needles - nothing controversial about that grin.

I am going to teach an 8 year old to knit later this week, and I can't decide which needles to use. I have some straights that were free with a magazine, and if I use those she can take them away with her, whereas my circulars are all part of interchangeable sets. On the other hand, part of me feels that she may as well learn on circulars, as they are so much more convenient. You can pack your knitting away much more easily, and knitting in the round will be easier to learn if she is used to the idea of circulars.

Callistemon Thu 29-Jul-21 11:07:46

I have come to like circular needles too.
But I find crocheta bit easier on the hands and wrists