Guest Author - Marjorie Colletta
When knitting having some helpful tips and tricks help make your knitting life easier and more fulfilling. The following tips are some things that I have found helpful and have kept me sane when I am knitting.
Keep a note with each project, especially those projects you do not work on everyday, or a copy of the pattern with the project with notations written right on the pattern. The note would have information such as the last row worked, any adjustments to the pattern you made, what size needles you have used (especially if you started with one size and moved to a different size). What book or pattern you are using for the project, if you have not included the pattern with the project.
Consider using a lifeline in your knitting. This line holds stitches in place when you have to rip back, especially helpful in lace, but can be used anytime you might need to rip back. I take a piece of dental floss or smooth, thin, light colored cotton yarn and thread it on a blunt needle. Run the floss or yarn through every stitch on the needle (it works best when you are using circular needles and have put all of your stitches on the cord), then continue to knit the next row, taking care not to pick up the life line.
Stitch markers can save you a ton of time if you are casting on a lot of stitches, or doing a pattern that repeats across a row. Here is a picture of using stitch marker to keep track of repeats,
Stitch markers are used here so that when I get to one, I should always be at the same point within the stitch pattern.
Use a magnetic board or post-it note to keep place on a pattern or a chart.
I keep a small container or an old pill bottle in my project bags or my purse, with a blunt needle, a coil-less safety pin, a stitch marker or two, and the end of a crochet hook. This allows me to easily pick up dropped stitches, mark a spot in the project that needs special attention later when I have all of my stuff, or finish the toe of a sock.
The most important tip to my way of thinking, never rip back when you are tired or it is after midnight. Setting a project down when you have made the same mistake over and over again, or when you are tired allows you to get a bit of perspective or help with the project. Some mistakes can be fixed or ignored when you have had a good nights sleep.
There are a lot more tips, but this is the start. Come to the forum to add more tips.