Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Knitting Again!

Last March my right hand ring finger started hurting.  I thought it was caused by arthritis.  By the middle of August I realized that it was a case of "trigger finger" and I quit knitting for the time being, because it was "throwing the stitch" that gave me the trigger finger.

I've really missed knitting!  I had been in the middle of knitting a pair of socks for D.S. #2.  We plan to visit with him and his family in the middle of December, and I would like to have these socks finished so he can start wearing them.

Yesterday I picked up the knitting again.  But with a difference!  Now I am knitting left-handed.  That is something I learned about 15 years ago at a "Philosopher's Fair Isle" workshop.  Fair Isle knitting uses two colours of yarn per row, and what was taught at that class was the technique of keeping one colour on your right hand and the other colour on your left hand.

If you've always done right-handed knitting, left-handed feels extremely awkward at first.  But persevere!  After a while it becomes much easier.  My friend, S., had suggested that I finish the socks left-handed, but I didn't try that until yesterday.  Thanks for the idea, S.!

I need to use my right hand for a few things yet: the first three stitches on each needle need to be fairly tight, to prevent a gap between the needles, so those first three stitches are knit with the right hand.  To do increases, I loop the yarn around my finger and slide the loop onto the needle.  My right hand will do that without thinking.  My left hand is laboriously learning this skill.

But all in all, after about 12 new rounds (at the increases for the heel) I'm pleased with this progress.  I think this is doable.  And when I do knit a few stitches with my right hand, I hold the yarn between my thumb and index finger and move the whole hand to form the stitch, rather than flicking my fingers out to throw the stitch around the needle.  I think this is going to work!

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