So you now know how to knit. But do you know how to knit something noticeable?

Knitting has experienced a boom over the past few years, with more young people picking up their granny’s needles and creating new patterns and modern styles.

Beginners who have mastered the scarf can easily move on to those more special looks, the pros say.

“Once you know how to knit and purl, it’s all kind of just putting it together in different ways,” says Susan B. Anderson, longtime knitter and author of “Itty Bitty Hats” and other books.

“I think the little extra added touch makes all the difference.”

Here are some ideas:

• Because so many knitters give their work as gifts, it’s important to make the items feel like what they are: personal.

“Do a little embroidery with someone’s name on a blanket, give it that touch,” Anderson said. “It can take something great and make it even more great and make it more memorable and keepsake-y.”

• Think small.

For Anderson, the key was finding ambitious projects that weren’t too big.

“Small projects are a great way to try out different stitches and techniques for beginning knitters,” Anderson said.

The proof is in the pudding – or the cupcake. Working on a small scale, Anderson has created an adorable collection of baby items, including a hat and mittens set that looks like cherry-topped cupcakes.

• Start with what you like.

“There are lots of different knitting books and Web sites out there now that address all kinds of styles and tastes,” says Debbie Stoller, author the “Stitch’N Bitch” series of knitting books that helped sparked a movement of young knitters. (Most recently she’s penned “Son of Stitch ‘n Bitch: 45 Projects to Knit and Crochet for Men.”)

For Stoller, it was natural to start integrating skulls and other punk iconography into her cute-but-not-cutesy patterns. As a teen in New Haven, Ct., Stoller loved going to tiny clubs to see punk bands traveling from New York to Boston, and her work reflects that interest.

• Get color crazy.

Stoller and Anderson both recommend trying new things frequently, but slowly.

“Knitting is so funny in that it looks way harder than it is, but if you just take your challenges in increments, you’re always building on your skills,” said Anderson.

A good place to ramp up the style of any project is its colors, by adding in stripes or using color-variegated yarn, or by doing something for the piece’s texture.

“If you’ve already made a basic sweater, maybe something with lace or cables, if you like that kind of thing, something to give texture,” Stoller said.

“Cables are one of the most impressive things you can do with the least effort.”

• Take it easy.

If anything goes wrong, just try again.

“One thing to get over is that you do have to sometimes rip things out” and start again, Anderson said.

“If you have to rip something out, you just do it, you move on and start again.”


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