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I’ve given knitting a two out of five on my energy usage scale. I started knitting when I had to give up all the other crafty things I use to do, it has a pretty low energy level as you can do it lying back or sitting comfortably. But, it does use more energy than crochet, as you have two large needles (most of the time) to use rather than one small hook. You are moving both arms and holding yarn but you can prop your arms on cushions or pillows to take some of the weight for you. As for concentration, you can create full scarfs using just the one stitch so you never have to concentrate too much if you don’t want to. I’ve made multiple garter stitch scarfs and I love them, especially if you use variegated yarn or self striping yarn to keep it interesting.
For this I was struggling between two or three out of five, but I went with three as it can be a lot more difficult to control than crochet as you have multiple things to work with. And similarly, you can’t just buy needles with larger grips like you can with crochet. You can use larger needles and thicker yarn. but it will affect the projects you will be able to make. However, if knitting is something you want to learn or give a go, you can still make some lovely things using thick yarn and larger needles. My favourite scarf to make is on a pair of 7mm needles with chunky yarn but things like socks which are commonly made using 4 or 5 small needles on pretty thin yarn probably isn’t going to be a good place to start.
I’ve given this a two out of five, which is a lot lower than crochet (I know i’m comparing the two a lot but they are very similar types of crafts). All you really need to know to get started is a cast on and the knit stitch then you can start knitting to your hearts content. There are loads of videos on YouTube explaining and showing step by step how to cast on and how to knit. But there are also loads of written and photographic tutorials online if watching isn’t the way you learn best. Personally, the first time I learnt to knit, I saw my aunt knitting and asked her to show me how to do it. She showed me the knit stitch and within a couple of minutes I was knitting away. Rather badly, but I was doing it, and I got much better with practice.
There is a LOT to learn in knitting when you want to progress though so I have given this a three out of five to continue. Once you have learnt the basics (a couple cast ons, a cast off, the knit stitch and the purl stitch) there is quite a lot you can do with out having to learn much more. But, there is also a lot of much more advanced things to learn. Increase and decreases, learning to follow patterns, and shaping are all things you need to learn to make more difficult garments. You can try knitting with multiple small double pointed needles, these usually come in packs of 4s or 5s and are used in socks or hats usually when you need to be able to decrease in the round. You can get cable needles to create lovely….cables. There’s lots to learn and people who have been knitting all their lives still learn new things.
And finally, like crochet, knitting is really cheap to start learning. One out of five. All you need is a pair of knitting needles and a ball of yarn. To start knitting I recommend you get a fairly thick yarn and reasonably sized needles so that you can tell what you are doing. I started learning on a pair of 5.5mm knitting needles with aran yarn. Knitting needles come in different widths (described in mm), lengths (most commonly 30 or 35cm) and materials. I much prefer using wooden needles when I knit, but these are much more expenisve than their aluminium or plastic counterparts. I recommend picking up either a metal or plastic pair either 30 or 35cm at around 5 or 6mm and picking up a cheap aran yarn. The needles will cost about £2 and the yarn you can pick up for a similar price until you have learnt the basics.
(I will add, while I much prefer aluminium needles to the acrylic plastic ones, some people find the weight and the coldness of the metal uncomfortable and prefer plastic. If you’re not sure you can pick up a pair of both and test them out.)
You don’t need to buy any books to help if you don’t want as everything you need is online but if you prefer to learn out of a book, you can find knitting books for £10 or at your local library.
If you choose to carry on knitting, it can get more expensive but only if you want it to. More luxury yarns can be up to £15 rather than £2, and for large projects like a blanket even relatively cheap yarns can add up by the time you have enough for the whole project. More expensive knitting needles are available, as I mentioned I use wooden needles that can get to about £10 a pair rather than the £2 for the basic ones.