Hands on Learning: Looming

A friend of mine is learning to knit. She even knitted me a scarf for Christmas.

Isn’t it beautiful? It’s soft, warm and cozy. It makes me want to attempt to knit even though I know I have had several knitting failures over the years.

My first experience in knitting was to make strapless, tube style, Barbie doll dresses on a small circular loom, about 2″ across. It was fun, but Barbie could only own so many dresses of the same style, so I gave up knitting.
Later I decided to learn to knit with real needles. I bought myself a skein of beautiful teal colored yarn, and taught myself to cast on and pearl. I was planning on making a scarf. I remember working on it for ages trying to be sure the stitches were even and beautiful, but I ended up with a rather awkward looking rectangular pot holder. My beautiful yarn was so thick that it didn’t go very far. This tremendous disappointment caused me once again to give up knitting.
I think at one point I was inspired to begin a sweater, but never got past the idea phase. Anyone else have these issues?
Knitting today though is huge. Like the art of quilting, knitting is becoming very chic. Knitters Guilds are springing up all over, college kids are knitting in their dorms, classes and workshops are bountiful. I have even heard of knitters being hired to teach classes on board Cruise ships. Knitting is no small affair.
So, once again I have decided to try to learn. This time, I am starting with an old familiar friend, the circular loom. This is what my good friend knitted the beautiful scarf on that she gave me for Christmas. Amazing!
I must fess up and tell you that part of my interest in knitting is to find something my boys can do while they listen to their audio books. Okay, a LARGE part of my interest is so that I can teach them a valuable skill. They are not crafty, and I find that few homemade items hold their interest.
I checked out this circular loom kit from the children’s department at our local library. Can you believe it? I LOVE OUR LIBRARY!
This loom is called the Knifty Knitter. The kit came with a knitting hook and directions to make a hat. However, there are lots more knitting ideas on the company website at www.provocraft.com. You can also purchase the looms at Jo Ann Fabrics or Walmart in the craft department. They run about $5.00 each and come in different sizes.
I visited my local thrift store and scored a big bag of miscellaneous yarn for $5.00. I was not going to run run out of yarn again!

I love thrift stores. Have I mentioned that?
After a quick lesson from our neighbor we are off and knitting.
We decided to use two strands of yarn, a plain yarn, and a multi-colored one. There really wasn’t a lot of reason behind it, it just seemed easier to see than using two multi-colored strands, and we had lots of yarn to work with.
Down in the bottom of the bag was some deep purple yarn, I love it.
I am working on knitting………..something. I am not going to commit yet for fear it won’t turn out, but I will say, it’s incredibly easy. I am really enjoying it. My kids love it too. The boys are making great progress on their projects. They are very busy “looming” as they call it.
“Sorry Mom, can’t come to dinner yet, I am looming!”
When my father was growing up during WWII, everyone knitted wool hats for the soldiers to wear. I guess they have decided that if Grandpa was a knitter it’s okay for them to do it too.

Update: Since I orginally wrote this post, my kids have knitted 2 scarves, a pair of socks, a hat, and are currently working on a bolster pillow cover. These looms are so much fun! All this while listening to their audio school books. Amazing!

My 17 year old who currently is in public school came home one day and saw his brothers knitting. I was sure he was going to make fun of them, and they would never knit again. Do you know what he said?

“Hey, I want to learn to do that!  A bunch of guys on my soccer team are knitting team hats and I want to learn to make one too. Do you know how to knit letters into the hat?”

Not yet I don’t, but you can be sure I will figure it out!


Happy knitting!
Designer Mom

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2 thoughts on “Hands on Learning: Looming

  1. This is so cool! 🙂 I don't do well learning stuff like this from books, but we're learning to crochet from YouTube. 😉 Also, some speciality yarn shops will have knitting classes. They LOVE having kids come in, so they can pass down the art through the generations. 🙂

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