Sweet November Shawl: Or How Purling Became My Stitch

Alright you guys, as I wrestled my cold into submission last week I came to a realization: Purling is now my jam.

If you’d told me this was going to be the case, even a week ago, I would have asked you what you’d been drinking and taken your keys.

See, Purling and I have a history. It’s why quit knitting the first two times I tried to learn, which at 10 made sense but at 30 was seriously unacceptable. So I made two scarves. The first crochet, the second was all Knit, since it was a really cute and funky yarn I’d been gifted, I eased up on myself and made it all about the yarn just the one time. It worked!

As soon as I finished that scarf, I took my practice yarn and nailed purling. I started another project immediately and never looked back – even though: *sigh* purling.

However, when I took my weezing, asthmatic, virus ridden self to the doctor last week with my Sweet November Shawl, I learned that this whole time, I’ve been Knitting wrong. It was actually a marvelous experience, albeit a bit jarring, because I got to meet and knit with possibly the nicest guy ever. We had a while to wait and decided to knit together, and being very self conscious warned him that I knit a bit weird. All this time, I’d thought it was because I’d learned from my mom and both of our handedness had been “corrected” as kids (at school ambidexterity was just as wrong as being left handed). Nope. Turns out, I just knit into the back of the stitch (more on that later) and in the Euro way.

Right at that moment, just last week, mind, I discovered the front of the stitch and actually learned to knit! I also learned why I’d been having such a terrible time getting SSK (slip, slip, knit). It was life changing. Oddly enough, my purling was perfect. And I have to admit that even before I learned that I was knitting wrong, it was the easiest thing about this pattern, given that you mostly just purl all the even rows, so there are no YO (yarn overs) to forget, or SSK to mess up. Purling is soooo my jam.

This pattern has taught me so much, not only about about following a pattern, but a ton of technique and stitches, and so I am now obsessed with finishing the shawl beautifully. To that effect, I started over for the second time. It was a disaster but I know what I did wrong and I reeeally hope that the third time is the charm. I’m still getting used to knitting in the front of the stitch and getting used to the change in tension but I’m having great time. Especially with the Purling 😉


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