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Our Knitting Dislikes



As a long-time knitter, but fairly new designer, I am growing increasingly more aware of the 'likeability' factor - for lack of a better term - of certain knitting techniques over others by the general knitterly public.

The first discovery I made in this regard, which at the time genuinely surprised me, was that 'knitters hate purling.' I was first informed of this by a yarn company, in response to my suggestion for a reverse-stockinette sweater design. And I've since heard the sentiment echoed by enough knitters, to make me believe 'it's a thing.'  

I assumed at first that this antipathy to purling was unique to English-style knitters. Being a Continental knitter myself, the purl stitch takes me the same amount of time and effort to execute as the knit stitch, so the idea of working in reverse-stockinette does not strike me as in the least bit unpleasant. However, I have since heard more than a few Scandinavians say they dislike purling as well. So... it seems to be independent of knitting style. Interesting!

Other common dislikes I've learned of, include aversions to i-cord, short rows, and twisted stitches. I am sure there are more that I can't think of just now!

For whatever reason, i do not seem to share these preferences . And so I am often faced with the decision, of whether to omit a technique from a pattern which I enjoy and believe works best in the pattern, but might be widely disliked by others.

As for me, one of the things I like least about knitting is garter stitch. I do not know why, but (with rare exceptions) the look and the texture of it just really get on my nerves, especially when it is used as an edging for hems, cuffs, and necklines. Normally I will do anything to avoid it.

I also, no matter how many times I have tried to keep an open mind, do not like pieced knitting. I will go to great lengths to devise seamless methods for knitting everything that happens upon my needles, even if it is normally more traditional to knit it pieced. The San Fharaois vest, for example, happened because I was determined to knit a sleeveless top seamlessly, using the contiguous sleeve construction method. 

And then my other big dislike is casting on. I think this is mainly because I cannot count! So if there are more than, say, 50 stitches to cast on, it takes forever to count, and recount them. And then I still get it wrong half the time and have to rip out the first row/round after discovering I have the wrong number of stitches. As a form of self-torchure, no doubt, I am currently experimenting with a top-down short rows shawl that began with a 300+ stitch cast on. I think casting it on took me longer than knitting it! But even aside from all that, I do not enjoy the hand motions required for casting on. So mostly I just want it to end, and the knitting to start! If I could outsource casting on, I certainly would... And then, onto my reverse-stockinette dress with i-cord edgings! 

What are your biggest dislikes in knitting? Do you avoid patterns that call for these techniques?