I asked if you could share with me the hidden gems of the knitting world, tips, tricks and insights that I might have missed. All of the answers were fantastic and needed a permanent home that was easy to get to so I've listed them here. Thank you so much for sharing all of your knowledge.
Sharon - Here is my favorite website for learning new tricks. This link takes you to her tutorial on how to join "in the round" without that ugly looking space you end up trying to make disappear. I just tried it on a new pair of socks, and it worked perfectly!
lucette - I really like making top down circular tanks and sweaters as there is no sewing of seams and you can try on the garment as you are knitting along to see how it fits. Barbara Walker has written a wonderful book that I constantly refer too called Knitting from the Top, and it has lots of instruction for all kinds of garments, even skirts and pants (if you wish).
nessaz - Two tips! Pin your row counter to the right side of your knitting - keeps track of your rows AND your right side. For a chain selvage, slip the last stitch of each row purlwise with yarn in front, knit the first stitch of each row through the back loop.
Avery - Nona's mnemonic for grafting is priceless. She deciphered this lengthy difficult to memorize but absolutely necessary task and distilled to a few words. You can find it here.
Mai - I was always left with the ugly "step" from binding off after knitting anything in the round (sweaters, sleeves, toe-up socks) until I found this awesome tutorial on a finishing techniques for such "cuffs." Fantastic!
glenn - When your project isn't working, don't put it aside. Pull it out and turn it into a baby blanket/lap robe. It still stores the yarn, but doesn't leave you with that sense of failure.
Gail Crutchfield - This may be a silly little tip, but if you are desperate, it is a lifesaver! If you are taking your knitting on plane, bring along a container of dental floss. You can use the cutter to cut your yarn!
Julia - I love tutorials on this blog:
Amanda - I love this post on making the perfect left-leaning decrease. The slumpy-bumpy SSK just wasn't working for me.
Shelly Pirkle - I love this solution for holes in sock heels:
If you're into Japanese pattern knitting I have compiled a list of links to stitch dictionaries etc:
Sunny - My favorite tip is to use Post-Its to mark your place on a pattern. I can rarely finish a section in a single sitting, and even if I could, I have to remember the next section to start! Post-it's are easy to move and don't damage the pattern at all.
Tannei - Here is a good way to do a stretchy bind off
Emily - Well. I can't believe nobody has mentioned Eunny Jang's excellent little tutorials yet, so let me be the first. Here is one on unventing (decoding) cables and making your own chart. And here's the first in her series on steeking, which really demystified the whole process for me:
Thayer - I like knitting socks toe-up, so I can always keep track of how much yarn I have left. But short row heels just don't do it for me-they're always too tight. I love this technique for doing a toe-up gusset heel.
maria - My favorite trick or tip is to not turn your work while working stockinette stitch. Instead, just knit back backwards! Knitty has a tutorial on this here. Personally, I knit in a combined method, which I think makes this even easier. You just knit both ways, through the back loop, scooping the yarn from beneath.
cindy - I really love this site's discussion on understanding Japanese knitting charts.
Elaine - THE best online tutorials for people wanting to learn how to knit socks are those by Silver. These tutorials saved my sanity as I was first struggling to figure out how to knit socks. I see that she has now added Magic Loop and 2 Socks on 2 Circs tutorials!
Geek Knitter - I avoid ladders in my socks by knitting all the stitches on my left needle, and then using the same needle to knit the first two stitches on the next needle. Then continue with the empty needle and tah-dah, no ladders!
Samantha - This is a very simple tip that I learnt from my Grandmother (who herself had been taught this at school), but I think it really makes a difference in the appearance of my finished objects. For less bulky seams, cut down the number of plies that you use when seaming. The exact number of plies depends on the type and strength of the yarn - but I standardly reduce yarn to 2-3 plies.
Carie - Travelling with knitting projects: Some airlines and security personnel don't let you pass through security with knitting notions, regardless of the federal regulations. If using DPNs, place them (without knitting on them) in a pencil case along with pencils. They should not even raise questions. You could also use the round barrel pencils (I like coloured pencils because they don't "shed" their leads as badly as graphite pencils) to knit with (mine are about a US 10.5 size, so your project will be kind of limited, but nobody will ever make you give up your writing implement).
Janet - I am picky about my decreases matching on right and left sides. When I do the ssk,I slip the first stitch as to knit but the second as to purl then knit together through the back loops. Makes a nicer decreases that matches the k2tog better.
- First off, a silly little trick that I use is threading yarn through
needles using dental floss threaders. It works like a needle threader,
but they never break and you can get your dentist to give them to you
for free if you ask.
I also use twist ties instead of scrap yarn for holding small quantities of stitches.
But the coolest little trick I've coming across on the internet is ysolda's spiraling stripes, because I, like everyone else ever, hate yarn ends, and I also hate carrying yarn up the side of my project to avoid yarn ends.
This was my contribution, a tutorial on weaving in ends as you knit. Once again thanks so much for sharing.