Lace Knitting: Simple Enough for Beginners

Lace knitting is a beautiful way to dress up a garment, curtains or bedspreads. There are many variations on this art - from small delicate stitches with small needles and fine yarn, to delightful random patterns done with heavier materials. Some lace knitting is even simple enough for beginners to tackle.

If you know how to knit, purl, yarn over and decrease, you are ready to start lace knitting in the most basic designs. Every opening in a lace pattern is made by a yarn over and a decrease. Once you get this principle down pat, there will be very few lace patterns that you will not be able to conquer. The other key is in the ability to keep count of stitches and rows - this is more an issue of concentration than knitting experience.

The Various Categories of Lace

There are three categories of lace knitting that you can consider trying. The first is an eyelet pattern that consists of a small series of holes in a particular pattern. There are not as many openings in these designs as in some of the other lace patterns you will see. The open lace patterns give a more traditional appearance and are popular in shawls and bedspreads.

Basic lace patterns are generally the most open and mesh-like. This type of lace knitting can be very attractive as a decorative panel in a garment when alternated with cabled panels or other stitch varieties. To help you identify the different categories of lace that you can create, you can get an instructional manual for beginning knitters that will show illustrations for the various types.

Patterns for Lace Knitting

When you sit down to read a lace knitting pattern, you will probably find that instead of written instructions, you will have a lace chart that gives you a "picture" of what your finished lace will look like. With any luck, your lace chart will have a key to help you make sense of all of the dots and squiggles that fill up the graph.

The advantage of the lace chart is that it will give you a good idea of how your stitches will line up to make your pattern, and help you keep track from row to row to ensure that your stitch count is accurate. These charts will also help you to visualize how your lace knitting should look as you go along. Once you have mastered the key for your pattern chart and become comfortable with each of the required stitches, following your chart should go fairly smoothly.

Lace knitting can be a fun and beautiful addition to your knitting repertoire. With a little practice at the basic stitches and the pattern charts, you will be on your way to creating spectacular handmade lace in no time at all!