Learning to knit – how long should it take?
It's important to recognize that learning to knit is an ongoing process. There are people who have been knitting for twenty years and still find themselves learning new things. However, the foundation of any knitting project is to learn how to cast on, knit, purl and cast off. Some people are able to learn these stitches in just a few hours, but not everyone picks up the skill that quickly.
The first thing you need to do is purchase some yarns, and needles, and get yourself some tuition from an experienced knitter. This does not have to be a professional knitting class; you can ask a friend or relative for help, as long as they are good enough knitter.
Starting with the basics
There are two main methods of knitting, English, and Continental. The English knitting method is commonly used, and requires the yarn to be controlled using the right hand. Many left handed people find it easier to learn to knit using the Continental method, as the yarn is controlled and manipulated using the left hand. Once you have decided which style of knitting you want to learn, you should concentrate on the basics of casting on, creating a knit stitch and casting off, at first.
Learning how to purl
Purl and knit are the two main types of stitches used in knitting. Once you know how to create a knit stitch, you need to learn how to purl , Purl stitches look like the back of knit stitches, and they create a bumpy effect in a piece of knitting. While you are learning your stitches, you can just stick to creating a square of knitting; it's simple and means you can concentrate on getting stitches to look right, before you start to create anything more complicated.
How long does it take to learn knit and purl stitch?
As long as you are a fairly dexterous person, you should be able to learn initial knitting stitches in 2-3 days. Of course, it depends on how much time you can dedicate to knitting; an hour each day is good to start with. When you first start creating stitches, they may be loose and unequal in size. The next step is to ensure your knitting looks neat. You also need to learn how to pick up a dropped stitch, because it will drive you crazy if you cannot put mistakes right.
Continuing the process
Once you know how to cast on, knit, purl and cast off, you can start working on more complicated stitches, and learn how to read knitting patterns. Remember that it's not a race. Take your time learning the basics. On average, it should take around two weeks, knitting for an hour each day, for you to be able to create a consistent piece of knitting. Do not worry if it takes you longer than this; it's better to take your time and get it right, than rush and continue making a lot of mistakes.
Once you have mastered the basics of knitting, you can start to stretch yourself with more complex patterns. It's an enjoyable hobby, and a great way of relaxing.