60 comments on “Flicking

  1. Staci,
    Thank you so much for all of your videos. I hold my yarn in my left hand because , for me, it is so much faster than holding it in the right hand. However, I am getting a sore thumb from the small movement I make with my leftt hand so I am trying to learn to “Flick.” Love it! I don’t see you struggle keeping your tension the same for knit and purl stitches as I do. Do you just hold the yarn with your right ring and little finger? It seems that most of your movement is done with the left hand by moving the needle to the front or to the back. Your technique is geniuus and I am so glad that you are willing to teach the rest of us. I’m hoping to eliminate pain in my left thumb by using your technique. Any tips that you can pass on is appreciated. I lived in Austin from 1971 to 2001. I live in Moore, Ok now and I love how easy it is to get around the Oklahoma City metro area.
    Happy Knitting,

  2. Hi Regina – to answer your questions –

    I don’t wrap the yarn around my fingers at all. I just hold it between my palm and fingers, sort of in a fist.

    And yes, sometimes most of the movement is with my left hand, sometimes with my right. I switch back and forth when one hand starts to get fatigued.

    The only tip I can offer is to practice! Remember, I didn’t use to knit like this, either. I only got good at it because I was determined.

    S t a c i

  3. Hi Staci! Now I can understand how it’s possible to hold the yarn on the right hand. With this video I will try it.


  4. Wow, this may be THE way of knitting I’ve been looking for!

    I used to knit with the yarn in my right hand, letting go of the needle. Took me forever to knit something so I learned to hold the yarn in my left hand.
    Fast, but after years of knitting this way, I still have trouble with tension, always too loose and a bit irregular.

    And I would love to be able to knit with more than one color in a row, a yarn in each hand.

    I’m trying your way and while it’s a bit to learn, my tension is tighter and regular, even just starting.

    Looks good, thank you so much for your videos.

    An old dog can learn new tricks!


  5. I watched this video without sound so I just saw the visuals. I’ve seen your videos on YouTube first (that’s how I discovered your website) and you’re just about the fastest English knitter I’ve ever seen because you only move your right index finger to throw the yarn. What an impressive technique to knit faster. I love watching you “flick.” It’s so mesmorizing!

  6. I finally watched the video with sound at home (I didn’t have speakers at my work computer the first time). Sorry I called your knitting style English! I didn’t know you called Flicking in between English and Continental until I watched it with sound. It’s still a very impressive technique!

  7. This video was wonderful. I use to knit with my right hand and drop the needle to wrap the yarn. Then I found your video about flicking and now I knit much faster. It was hard at first to get use to the motion, but after a couple days of trying I was able to knit using flicking much easier. I found that it’s much harder to purl using flicking because I end up losing some of the stitches I made and had to go back, or the tension is too tight.

  8. Hi Staci, Thanks so much for all the videos. I am grateful that they are free, however I would have paid to watch them all. Speaking of flicking, my Aunt just called it knitting…I would be trying to learn how from her and she would say “watch me” then she would flick along at 100 mph and I would be left behind long before the 1st row was done. Thanks to your videos I have been teaching myself to knit with your help and my son getting books from the library for me. I have made two pairs of magic circle socks, the 2nd pair came out much better than the first. I’ve also been working on a way to hold my yarn that works for me and this has helped, too. It looks like you wrap the yarn around the needle (b4 u pull it through) counter -clockwise on both the knit and the purl?

    Would you put out a pattern enlarging or decreasing tutor sheet for sale. I would like to be able to change a pattern to fit me (I am 6’2″ tall, I usually buy a 3x or 4x in clothes for the length and take them in) and I want to do it right with still being able to use the same size needle that the pattern calls for. If you have somewhere I could go (online or a book) that would be great, although I think that you could explain it better than anyone else. You’ve got another follower of the verypink Staci way. 🙂

    Thanks again for all that you do to help the rest of us learn to knit new things that are a great mood lifter when we are done with them,

  9. Thank you for this video. I have knit with the English method for over 50 years. I tried to teach myself the Continental but it just never worked for me. I still have to wrap the yarn around my little finger to keep tension, but I’m knitting much faster now(and I was a fast English knitter!)and its nice not to be letting go of the right needle and having it possibly slip out of the stitches. So glad I found this website!

  10. Good Morning….Do you know where I can get an adult pattern like the one you have for sale for a child, the tunic top? Love,love,love your website.

  11. Hi Staci,
    I am English and thus knit English style. I don’t wrap the wool around my finger of my right hand and seem to get great tension. However, I marvel at the way and the speed you knit! Your videos are fantastic! I purchased your baby pattern booklet (but have since got a new phone so don’t have the PDF anymore 🙁 ). I have just started to try “flicking” but my tension is very tight. I will keep trying though!
    Thanks for the inspiration,
    Lisa 🙂 x

  12. Hi Staci,
    since I came across this video a few months ago, I’ve been practising flicking – I made a conscious choice to knit that way. I’m almost there… my main problem holding the yarn. I can’t seem to keep it fixed in my palm as you do without discomfort. I’m still wrapping yarn around my fingers, but that interrupts continuity after a few stitches. Can you suggest yarn/finger-wrapping configuration that might work with flicking?
    What I would love to see is you knitting a 1×1 rib or moss stitch at speed and watching your continuity there! I love the moss stitch, but it’s a bit labour intensive and I think flicking could be the answer to my prayers on that one! (I am UTTERLY useless at continental purling.) I want to knit myself a moss stitch cardigan so I’d better master it quickly! 🙂 Thanks for the wisdom by the way.

  13. Hi Nicola – it sounds to me like you’re experimenting with how it is most comfortable for you to hold the yarn. Keep doing that! That is the best advice I can give you. You have to find what works for you, your tension, and what is comfortable for your hands.

    I can’t think of a good video where I’m knitting a substantial bit of rib stitches – at least not one we’ve released yet. But we did shoot one last week. It’s called “Simple Magic Loop”, and I knit 2×2 rib (in my normal flicking style) to demonstrate it. If you subscribe to my website or my YouTube channel, you’ll be sure to see it when it’s released – sometime in the next few weeks.

    Hope that helps! Good luck.
    S t a c i

  14. Wow, I tried knitting like this about a month ago and I mean it works out too be amazing. My tension is near perfect and everything is even. I’m a continental knitter. But this is simpler and easier. Thanks Staci.


  15. Hi Stacy,
    your videos are sooo good. I am nine and have been knitting for 1 year and have started flicking with your help. I just dont hold my yarn around my fingers the way u do. I wrap it around my nasty finger and not front to back.

    Thank u soooooooooooooooooo much

  16. I have been meaning to thank you for this video for a couple of months now. I started knitting in September 2012 using your videos alone. (You are a wonderful teacher!) I found this video back in September also and have been knitting this way for 4 months now and I love it! My friends who have been knitting for years cannot believe how fast this is or how many projects I have already worked on. This has made me love the purl stitch. I’ve made several dish cloths, 1/3 of the way through the log cabin blanket, made a few toboggans and scarves, and am almost done with a ripple prayer shawl for a friend. I am truly addicted! It is so fun! I have already bookmarked a couple of simple cardigans to try out soon. I just can’t believe that I could make something that I can actually wear! It is a hobby that I love to share with everyone else. We teach the young marrieds class at church and all the newly weds want their own dishcloths also:) several have already gotten into it also. I can see why you teach! It is so fun seeing someone learn and be excited about this! (I direct them to your videos so they watch and learn at home) several of the girls have inherited their grandmothers needles and had no idea how to use them. Now it is so special for them to be using these tools that made their own baby blankets when they were first born. These tools are truly priceless to them 🙂 thank you so much for being so generous in sharing your talent for everyone! I am curious to know who it was that taught you to knit? Thanks again! Blessings, Rebecca

  17. I’ve managed to master this technique, but its made me hate purling. But id swap speed for a stitch anyday. I guess ill get quicker at purling in time 🙂 thanks Staci xx

  18. Oh thankyou for this.I have fibromyalgia and am finding my throwing and letting go of the needle harder and harder to do,i am self taught as a teenager.I asked about learning continental on a forum and tried,oh dear!!them someone sent me this link,i can almost do it already just a problem with holding the yarn.I have never seen anyone knit like my mother did wish she was alive to help.Again many thanks.

  19. I’m a beginner/intermediate knitter (basically self-taught) & I knit like this anyway. I think in the beginning I may have let go of the needle & held the yarn between my thumb & forefinger & then wrapped around the needle, but I must have seen this demonstrated when I have watched video tutorials & just subconciously picked this method up. Although, sometimes when I purl I do let go of the needle & wrap with the yarn held between my thumb & forefinger.

  20. I really want to learn this technique. I’ve almost got it, but I can’t seem to keep the yarn out at the end of my index finger. After the first stitch it starts sliding back toward my hand, making it impossible to flick. Any suggestions? I don’t seem to be getting anywhere with my practice.

  21. Hi Shelly – to keep the yarn at the end of your finger, you need to have some pretty good tension on the working yarn. If you let it go slack, even for a second, it won’t stay in place. Most people keep the tension on the yarn by wrapping it once around their pinkie finger.

    Regardless of how you get it, it takes practice. Good luck!
    S t a c i

  22. Thanks for showing this Staci. I am a lefty but knit in the english right hand style and am desperate to stop letting go of the needle. I have understood the basics of your flicking technique, but the problem i am getting is HOW to hold the yarn in the right hand without it either becoming flopping or too tight OR ending up riding lower and lower down the index finger until it is in the grove between the 2nd and 3rd finger. Please help

  23. Hi Ann – some people have luck wrapping the yarn once or twice around their pinkie finger to get good tension. I’m afraid this isn’t something that I can really help you much with … you kind of have to figure out what works for you and your fingers with trial and error. Keeping good tension is probably the most challenging part of this style of knitting. But once you get it, you get it!
    S t a c i

  24. Hi Staci – I found your website and I just want to say Thankyou 🙂 I have always wanted to knit, but I have to admit I am a crocheter more than a knitter. I have always been such a slow knitter, my edges and my tension have always been off and it would take me forever to complete a project. I was one who let go of the right needle to “throw” my yarn and so many times at the beginning of the row my needle would fall out of my stitches and I’d have to pick them up, they’d be twisted… frustrating. I saw your technique for flicking and it took me a little bit, I knitted one of the dishcloths you have on your site and by halfway through it I had the technique down pretty well! Now just to work on tension… I ended up with pretty tight work. I really love your site, I enjoy your videos very much and they have helped me immensely! I am excited to start knitting again! Now I feel I can finally do justice to my new addi needle set 🙂

  25. Staci I love your website, your videos are so clear and easy to follow. I have learned so much by watching them, so much easier to follow than illustrations in a book. After watching this video several times and practicing I was able to master the art of flicking in no time at all, and I am hooked! You are a master teacher. Thank you for helping me to become a better knitter.

  26. Hi Staci,

    I wanted to say that I love your videos, actually working on my first socks by meshing several of your videos into one (2aat, toe-up, magic-loop.. all first time things for me as well as first time doing socks lol). I’ve been knitting a short time really, aside from the scarf I made to learn the movements, the socks will be the first actual project. Anyways, I was rather surprised by this one. I thought this was the normal way for knitting English style. This is just the way I fell into doing it and I couldn’t imagine doing it any other way.

  27. I’m having the same problem as Shelly. I can’t manage to combine keeping the yarn up on my index finger because I’m having trouble managing the tension with the yarn between my palm and ring/pinky fingers.

    Also, I’m starting to wonder if my fingers are too short. They’re not SUPER short, but perhaps SLIGHTLY shorter than normal.

    But when the right needle comes near my right ring finger, it’s “blocked” by my knuckle.

    I’m wondering if there’s anyone else reading that believes their fingers might just be too short to do this?

    I’m asking, because I’m practicing, but if the problem is the length of my fingers, then maybe it’s just not something for me to be able to do and practicing will be wasted time.

    It’s gotten to the point where the tip of the left needle scrapes against my right knuckle and it’s getting red and sore. I’m trying to adjust to that, but that’s when the yarn won’t stay up towards the tip of my “flicking” finger.

    Just curious if anyone else is dealing with this, and if they’ve managed to move past it.

  28. I prefer to use bamboo needles but find it slow. I will try your technique but do i have to switch to different kind of needle to pick up speed? Thanks.

  29. Hi Annalee – it’s really a personal preference, but using laminated wood or nickel plated brass might pick up your speed. Both of these materials are “faster” than bamboo needles.

    S t a c i

  30. So I saw this on YouTube and thought I’d try it while working on my socks I’m knitting and was messing up the stitches. So I grabbed some yarn from a new ball and a second set of needles and began to practice. Firstly, I am impressed with your speed. Secondly, I was laughing at myself after a while because I was trying to go fast and was splitting the yarn. Now that i have slowed it down, it works for me! Thank you so much and now back to my socks to practice some more!

  31. I just watched the video and am happy to know that I am a self taught “flicker”! I flick knit with my right hand holding the yarn and I flick purl with my left hand holding the yarn. This helps a lot with fatigue as both hands get an even workout. When doing stitches other than stockinette or reverse stockinette I am a right hand dominant knitter. I do use the pinky wrap for tension control and find that the wrap I use for crocheting works equally well for knitting.

    Thanks for the great video!

  32. I have been knitting English style like you demo in the first part of the video, but I am going to work on flicking to get quicker. Do you have a video where you show how to do ribbing by flicking? I am interested in seeing how you transition between knit and purl stitches. Also, what do you do with your right pointer finger? As I have been practicing flicking, I have caught myself using mine to assist me in sliding the knitted stitch onto the right needle as I am completing it. Will that slow me down?

  33. Hi Staci! I LOVE your videos. They are by far the best knitting ones on the Internet. You’ve thought of every possible question a relatively new knitter like me (been at it about 15 months) might have. The cabled cape on the form in the background of this flicking video is gorgeous. Is the pattern available for purchase? I’d love to try making it. Thanks so much!

  34. I have a very clear recollection of a video —I was sure it was yours — showing how to mend a hole in a knitted garment. But I don’t find it on your website. Did I imagine that it was your video? Thanks for your help!!!

  35. Wow, I didn’t realise the way I knit (the same as you exactly) was in anyway unusual. I feel kind of special now 😉

  36. Hi Staci,
    Thank you so very much for this video as it literally saved my knitting hands. I have been experiencing pain in the large muscle area beneath both thumbs for a year now and stopped knitting altogether for over 3 months. I couldn’t even manage 2 rows of swatch knitting! After an unsuccessful attempt at changing to continental style I thought I would give your style of knitting a bash as I am a thrower, so the leap to flicking is not so big. I do find compression gloves very useful as well. I am not knitting as fast as before, but I am getting there and am almost finished your new toddler sweater!

  37. Hello,

    I’ve watched the Video and can’t seem
    To get the tension not the way you hold your needle.
    I guess I hold my needle with all my fingers and in my palm loosely.
    When I try to hold it your way my hand cramps.
    I really need to learn how to knit faster.

    Any help would help.


  38. Aimee – this method of knitting isn’t for everyone, but if you do want to get it, it takes practice! If your hand is cramping, you may want to try something different, like loosening your grip.
    Good luck!
    S t a c i

  39. I wouldn’t consider letting go of the right hand needle ‘The Normal’ in fact, holding the needle and flicking is actually more normal. It’s usually learner knitters that do the letting go. And the ‘Normal’ way to get the tension right is to do one wrap of the yarn around the little finger and then over the index finger. it gives a nice even tension to your knitting.
    But your video is good for new knitters who have got into the habit of letting go of the needle. Well done.

  40. I’ve been knitting similarly to this way for years, just a little different movement with the right index finger 🙂 very fast method.

  41. I have been doing this same motion for years. I have always called it rocking. I think because the right needle rocks back and forth. I am not sure when I actually realized I was doing it but it is so much faster and I think it produces smoother stitches.
    So excited to see someone else doing this and hope more knitters try it!!

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