Knitting Patterns

11 Essential Materials for Beginning Knitters

If you're a beginning knitter wondering where to start, you've come to the right place. Ready to start knitting?  Some things you'll need to get started:

1. Knitting Needles

The size of a needle is described first by its diameter and secondly by its length. 

Needles are divided into two basic categories: straight or circular. Straight needles allow the knitter to work back and forth, producing flat pieces, circular needles allow the knitter to work in a continuous round, producing tubular pieces.

They are further categorized by use as single-pointed, double-pointed, interchangeable, and cable types. 

There are many different types of knitting needle materials such as metal, wood, bamboo, or plastic, acrylic. This is not to say that these are the only types of knitting needles out there. Simply, these are the most common knitting needle materials used today.

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Related to:
A Guide to Knitting Needle

2. Yarn

Yarn is a textile commonly made of either animal-based fibers (sheep's wool, mohair, angora), plant-based fibers (cotton, hemp, silk), or synthetic fibers (polyester, nylon, rayon). These interlocked fibers (referred to as plies) are spun together into thicker strands. 

The number of plies (for example, a single-ply yarn or two-ply yarn) will affect the drape, stitch definition, and general feel of the yarn.  

 Choose a yarn that is suitable for your project. Refer to the ball band (or label) which states the fiber content, weight, suggested needle size, gauge, and dye-lot number. To ensure that all your yarn for a project is exactly the same color, buy it all at once and check that the dye-lot numbers match.  

Related to:
A Guide to Knitting Yarn
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3. Scissors

You’ll need a pair of scissors to cut the yarn when you finish your project or want to switch to switch colors.

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4. Row Counter

A row counter is a tally counter for counting rows worked, for counting stitch pattern repetitions, or for counting increases or decreases of the number of stitches in consecutive rows.

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5. Tapestry Needle

A tapestry needle is a hand-sewing needle that is useful to knitters, it is a large sewing needle, with an eye big enough to accommodate bulky yarn.

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6. Measuring Tape

Some knitters opt for the kind seamstresses use and others use ones commonly found in a knitting materials kit.

A measuring tape is particularly important if you’re knitting a scarf, because you will need to measure your work to determine when it has become long enough to bind off or especially when making pairs of things, like mittens or sleeves.

7. Stitch Marker /Place marker

While these rings might look small, they’re a pretty mighty tool. These small, colorful rings slip on your needles to mark particular points in your pattern, they can help you keep your place, nail a complicated stitch, remember to swap out colors and more.

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8.  Stitch Holders

A stitch holder is like a large safety pin. When a pattern calls for you to set some stitches aside to come back to later, you simply slip those stitches onto a holder. We will knit those stitches later.

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9. Crochet hooks

It may seem counterintuitive to suggest buying crochet hooks for a knitting starter, but crochet hooks are not just for crochet! You can use them for many different tasks, from picking up dropped stitches to making a provisional cast-on.

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10. Point Protectors

When it comes to essential knitting tools, point protectors perform two important functions, also commonly called a "stopper," point protectors are small rubber caps that cover the pointed ends of your needles to ward against dings, and scratches. Another benefit: They prevent stitches from slipping off the needle, which is helpful when you're knitting on the go.

And, they can also be used to turn a double-point needle into a straight needle.

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11. Needle gauge 

Knitting needles come in many different sizes.  The sizes printed somewhere on the needles, but these printings often rub off over the years.

If you unsure of a needle's size,  slip it into each of the holes until you find the best fit.

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