Understand the 5 Knitting Styles

July 19, 2022 2 min read 0 Comments

Common knitting styles

Since the advent of knitting, dating back to the 11th century, knitters have developed innumerable ways to knit. 

5 Most Common Knitting Styles

With so many ways to knit, it is likely that you have adapted your own styles and techniques that work well for you. Maybe you wrap your yarn around your neck or knit left-handed. Like anything else, knitters develop unique habits that make their knitting personal to them. At the core of knitting, there are five commonly accepted styles and that is what we are going to talk about today.


Also known as "picking," Continental knitting is popular because it is a quick way to knit up a garment. Knitters hold the yarn in their left hand and then the yarn doesn't move much at all as your needle does all the work.


A unique style of knitting, Portuguese knitting requires knitters to provide tension in the yarn by wrapping it around the back of their necks. Knitters who love this style of knitting especially love how fast projects stitch up when your hands are free. If you experience knitting pain or arthritis in your fingers, give Portuguese knitting a try.


Also known as lever knitting, flicking is a knitting style where the working yarn is held in the dominant hand and then looped around the needle while the hand is still holding the needle. The result is a back and forth flicking type movement. Many knitters who use this technique hold the needle like a pencil and can "flick" stitches quicker than when using other techniques.


When knitters knit using the English style, they hold the yarn in their dominant hand along with the working needle. This is the most common style of knitting- more than 60% of knitters report using the English style most often. 


Shetland knitting is a newer form of knitting that is loved mostly because it can be used while standing. The working needle is held against the knitter's body so that the dominant hand doesn't have to hold the yarn tension and the needle at the same time. This style allows knitters to work up projects quickly. 

With so many ways to knit, how do you know which one is best for you? If you are a beginner knitter, select 2-3 knitting styles to learn and figure out which one works best for you. You may prefer one style for certain projects and another style for other projects. Knitting is very personal and individual- the important thing is to try something new and have fun with it!

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