Friday, 8 July 2016

A little bit of this and a little bit of that

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It's that time of year when Wimbledon is on and I'm doing more crafts that involve sitting down. I've been hand knitting, doing embroidery and general sewing of dressmaking projects that I have on the go.
I've also managed some machine knitting using the garter carriage and my Silver reed 860 Mid Gauge.
I finished today a pair of Monster Pants for age 6-9 months from a pattern i adapted using Designaknit from Ravelry. http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/machine-knit-baby-monster-pants
They were knitted at Tension 5* using Stylecraft Double Knitting yarn in various colours.
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I've also been sewing, I do find the television programme Sewing Bee very inspiring and here's what I've been up to.



























Fabric was purchased from a stitch and craft show that was held in Exeter last September.

The Garter carriage Slipover/Vest was knitted for my 91 year old Dad, I've made him loads of these with different stitch patterns as he loves wearing them.


Hand knitting a babies sweater at the present with a great garter stitch pattern which I will adapt for the knitting machine as I can see that I will use this one again.

Monday, 25 April 2016

Fine and Frustrating !!!

Hopefully a few tips for you on the trials and tribulations of using fine yarns.

1 Knit slowly and at a steady pace.

2 Stand cones in plastic bags if yarn is not feeding very well and static is building up.

3 If you need to undo a few rows it is best to break this yarn and discard it as it has a tendency to twist on itself. (Especially if using Fine crepe yarns like Yeoman's fine crepe or Metropolitan's) Of course you should experiment as some yarns behave okay.

4 If I'm using 3 strands of yarn together I feed 2 strands through 1 feeder and 1 strand through another, adjusting yarn break Tension accordingly.
5 Care to be taken if swapping from 2 strands to 1 strand as in above pink garment as it is easy to get loops at start of rows. Pull yarn down gently at back of machine just before going into yarn tension feeder.

6 If you need to wind fine yarn from cone make sure you rewind again (So that it knits as if it coming off of the cone as it was first wound) These yarns tend to bias if not rewound again. This is a good tip for most yarns. It's all something to do with S or Z twist of the way that yarn is made ? Beyond me to explain I'm afraid !!!
Pink vest above knitted with 3 strands of fine crepe yarn. The turquoise sweater below was 2 strands of yarn plated together and all of the above apply for this method. Lilac cushion knitted with 3 strands of yarn and pink cushion 1 strand of a slub yarn.
Red Top  knitted with 2 strands of fine crepe yarn

Saturday, 19 March 2016

A weighting matter !!

I've always liked to have a bit of weight when I knit with the Japanese machines. The Brother cast on combs have never been a favourite of mine. I like to use the ribber comb to give me the even weight across my knitting.

Here's one of the ways I go about it.
 Pull every other needle to Holding position. Place ribber comb over required needles and attach peg or clip each end to hold comb up above needles.











Manually knit stitch back to NW Position

Remove pegs making sure that ribber comb drops in front of the gate pegs.

Hold comb firmly downwards and pull forwards so that stitches are pulled back to working position. ( You have large loose sts and ribber comb hanging lower down.)















Knit a few rows with waste yarn, bring all required needles to working position and knit a couple more rows waste yarn.
Knit 1 row nylon cord and continue to knit with main yarn.
There is also a quicker method using the ribbers sinker plate but you need to be very confident with your knitting machine and is not suitable for beginners.

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

I'M ADDICTED (to image/photo conversions)


Oh what fun I'm having with converting photo's and images to knitting stitch patterns.
I first convert an image using the Gimp (Gnu image manipulation programme) 
Example = reducing size of image/ converting to pixels/sharpening/reducing colours etc
I then take the image/photo into Designaknit Graphics to make into stitch pattern.
A few of my attempts are shown here . Please note they are not finished yet. Some still need to

be cast off !!!
Edgings need to be knitted for one to make into a blanket. Olaf needs a back knitted to make into cushion. 
By the way theDalmation is my daughters dog called Dexter.

Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Knitting Doldrum's

I'm in the doldrums's again with machine knitting. I so hate this when it happens. I can walk into my hobbies room and look at my yarn stash and get no inspiration at all.I did a Craft Fair at the end of November 15 and it was not very successful. I worked my socks off for this event and have been feeling depressed about the whole event. I've loads of knitwear leftover and no idea what to do with it, bearing in mind I do masses of knitting for Charity throughout the year.

I put some of the knitwear in my Etsy Shop www.etsy.com/uk/shop/KnitwearByhelen and have managed to sell 2 pairs of Fingerless Gloves but nothing else.
What do other people do with their excess Knitwear. Ideas Please !!!