Friday, September 11, 2009

Ribber Lessons - What's Coming

I have wondered about what to cover in this ribber lesson series, and after giving it considerable thought, I keep returning to the concept that this is another beginner course.  I started doing this in the first place because I met beginners who have no local teacher. 

The purpose of the ribber lesson series is to cover the essentials to give beginners a working knowledge of the ribber, the ability to incorporate ribbed knitting in garments, and help them to follow ribber instructions in magazines and knitting books.  I want them to reach the point where they are excited about what it will do and comfortable with using it.  (By the way, according to YouTube, the ribber lessons have more male viewers than any of the other lessons.  Guys must find the ribber interesting.)

After that, logically, I need to cover the charting device and some patterning.  The charting devices are the simplest, cheapest way to get started with knitting garments to fit.

The lessons are designed so that by watching each lesson in order, then practicing that technique while it’s fresh, you can master the basics and start knitting the projects that inspired you to buy a machine!

I like to understand why I am doing each step of anything I do, not just follow a list of instructions.  If I push a button, I want to know what that button is doing.  It’s easier to remember that way.  I give as much background explanation as possible in the lessons.  Of course, as the lessons get more detailed, I have to assume people have watched prior lessons and omit some information, or else I couldn’t move forward.  If you discover that I’m going too fast, check out the prior, similar lessons in that same series.  Or send me questions or comments, and I’ll respond.

Another thing I mull over is how many projects to put up along with the basic courses.  The lesson groups consist of sample after sample, but sometimes you just want to actually make something.  Surely everyone wants to say, “I made this!”  In that spirit, I think I’ll put some more projects up before the charting device lessons, particularly projects without complex fitting.  Most of the knitters I know, even the most advanced, like to collect and make simple, practical projects.  We knit them for charity, for quick gifts, or just because we’re in the mood for the tried-and-true project, not a big challenge.   Speaking of gifts, it’s already September and the holidays will be upon us soon.  We’ve gone from incredible heat and drought in Austin to shorter days and even rain.

I am careful about copyrights.  I only put up my own designs or designs with permission, and you’re welcome to knit them, for non-commercial use.

It’s so exciting that I’m working my way through these essential lessons!  After they’re online, it will be great fun putting up more unusual and advanced technique videos. 





  1. Hi Diana,
    I have wathed all of you videos and have enjoyed and learned so much. Could you tell me what type of cast off one would do if you were knitting the body of the sweater from the top-down and you need to finish the rib edge with a cast off.
    Thank you,
    Brenda Jay

  2. Brenda, if it's 1x1 ribbing that you are ending the piece with, a simple way to cast off is to knit the last row of the 1x1 rib at a very loose tension. Next, transfer all the stitches to the main bed. Put the needles in hold position and have just a little weight left on - maybe 1 or 2 small claw weights. Use the latch tool to pull off a stitch, then put the stich behind the latch, then pick up the next stitch and pull the 2nd stitch through the first. Do that on across - it's the loop through a loop bind off that I have a video on early in the YouTube videos, only it's after you have done and transferred rib.

    I do plan to film ribbing bind-offs very soon, because that situation occurs often enough that I consider it an essential technique.

    Happy Saturday! I get to go film a video or two!