Monday, 25 May 2020

News from other clubs...

Some of the other machine knitting clubs around the UK are putting even more online than they usually do.

For an interesting read, take a look at Fleet Knitting Club - ex-GMK members will know of Liz Holness, who was our Chairman for many years.

If I find any others with recent updates, I'll let you know.

Monday, 18 May 2020

Linda has finished a couple of jumpers...

Hi everyone

Well I’ve finally finished my husband's jumper and I have also made a jumper for my grandson.

I have been busy setting up a second machine (my mum's knit master 323) it’s a lovely machine but so different to the Brother, such fun. I’m going to use the punch card patterns for my next project, I’m so excited.

I miss you all and can’t wait till we can meet again.
Till then I am sending a virtual hug.

Stay safe and see you soon.


Monday, 11 May 2020

Pat's latest cushions

Pat sent us a photo of her latest creations, and said:
I have knitted two cushions inspired by Bill King’s article in last month’s Machine Knitting Monthly. Punching out the card nearly drove me mad but I am pleased with the result. I’m going to try more colours next.

Thursday, 7 May 2020

Pat has been knitting hats...

Pat has sent us the following:

My mission during lockdown is to use up as many oddments as possible so, small amounts will make striped hats! Herewith the first six. Having raided the blue and green box I am now heading for the reds and pinks.

Jean - Show & Tell

Jean has sent us all a message:

Hello, just to say I have done some knitting but haven't got any garments made up they're all need putting together. This is one that I have started to press it's knitted on garter carriage. Hope to see you all soon.

Love all the knitting that is being shown.

Sunday, 3 May 2020

Another little bag

Another little bag! It's taken a long time to complete as I kept being distracted by the garden and other things. The 'tram line' side is hand knitted from the debris of various knitting projects. The 'cobblestone' side is machine knitted. It is a knit weave pattern (Knitmaster 580 pattern 4 ) which has been turned on its side. The gusset is hand knitted in Moss stitch. I think the yarn was 2 strands of 4 ply. The inside got complicated; three internal compartments and a card pocket.

Saturday, 2 May 2020

First garment on my Passap Duo 80

It must be over 2 years ago that I bought my Passap Duo 80 from a lady in London, and brought it home full of enthusiasm.

I cleaned it thoroughly, and knitted a lot of swatches followed by scarves and cot blankets with no real difficulties. However, I didn't manage to knit a garment. Even if I got it all going OK, it all went horribly wrong as soon as I needed to do any shaping. I dropped stitches or - even if I was sure I hadn't - they seemed to bounce off the needles. There was just so much to remember, too. I know it would have been the same when I first started with my Brother, but that's so long ago now that it's all second-nature.

The March 2020 edition of Machine Knitting Monthly contained a very straightforward jumper in crepe, with step-by-step instructions. Normally I wouldn't follow a pattern for something this straightforward, using my Knitleader instead. But I decided to have one more attempt. It worked, and I attach the evidence!

Not having to think about anything other than the action of the machine meant I could concentrate on that. I discovered a few things that will make my next attempt more straightforward.

  • It's true you don't need weights for the majority of the knitting, but a light weight at the edge once you're into decreasing helps keep the stitches in the needles - I think mine were tending to bounce out.
  • It is quite a labour-intensive machine. Knitting over a few stitches (such as for a tension square) is relatively easy work - and I've tried knitting on different blocks of stitches to check that some aren't just a bit 'sticky', so it isn't that. But as soon as I'm using most of the needle-bed, I have to put quite a bit of "Oomph" into pushing the carriage.
  • The yarn mast isn't as forgiving as the Brother one of knots and lumps in the yarn. Obviously, these are not a good thing at any time, but I find small kinks tend to straighten out on my Brother whereas they get stuck on the Passap - leading to tight stitches and breaking yarn. I'm also not sure that the tension discs on the mast are doing their job properly - something to investigate.

Friday, 1 May 2020

From Sue Booth

Sue sent me an email with some photos and a lovely message to us all.

Hi there,

The raglan woven jacket.
I hope everyone is safe and well. I’m pleased to be able to show you a couple of garments which I have recently knitted. The first is a raglan sleeve woven jacket using 3 strands of Uppinghams fine acrylic 2 ply crepe for the base yarn and 1 strand of Hayfield Bonus Aran Tweed for the weaving yarn. The Aran yarn was bought from the Wool Cabin at Chesterfield.

The second garment is knitted in 1 strand of Uppinghams Lambswool on Tension 8. I followed a 4 ply pattern and achieved the same tension. I washed and pressed the tension square before measuring. I knitted the garment and finished it completely. (At this stage it looks only fit for the dustbin!). I hand washed it and gave it a 600 spin then I placed it nicely in shape on a towel to dry. This only weighs 8 ozs but is lovely and warm. I believe this yarn is the same as the Lambswool sold at the club but always make sure your tension is correct and you are happy with your tension square before knitting your garment.

The lambswool cardigan.

I am sending the instructions for the front band on the Lambswool cardigan.

The neckband was knitted the same but I started on the main tension and reduced the tension by one whole number every 4 rows, i.e. 1st band: T8 knit 4 rows, T7 knit 4 rows, T10 knit 1 row, T7 knit 4 rows, T8 knit 4 rows, pick up first row and knit 1 row. WS facing pick up the garment, knit 1 row and cast off behind the sinkers. 2nd band: T6 knit 4 rows, T5 knit 4 rows, T10 knit 1 row, T5 knit 4 rows, T6 knit 4 rows, pick up first row and knit 1 row. WS facing pick up fold row of first band, knit 1 row and cast off behind the sinkers.

The full instructions for the buttonholes - including pictures - are here and on the Resources page.

I’ve also been doing a bit of crocheting whilst watching telly at night time. I found these slippers on YouTube. I asked for easy crocheted slippers and it came up with several. I thoroughly enjoyed making them and they can go in the Mapperley charity basket.

Hope it won’t be too long before we can meet up again, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, take care, Sue.

Alison's hand-knit cardigan

I went to the KCG Convention last year (2019) for the very first time, and thoroughly enjoyed it. One of the things they do is have a 'yarn amnesty' - similar to our yarn sales at the club, with the money raised going to charity. People take yarn that they have left over from projects, or that they bought on a whim and never got around to using.
I found a sealed pack of 10 balls of Wendy Frizzante - 'sealed' was good, it meant they were 10 full balls - complete with a pattern for a waterfall-style cardigan.
I'd never knitted an 'eyelash' yarn before, so decided one new thing at a time, and I'd follow the pattern. Problem was, the pattern came in three sizes, I needed the largest, and it took 11 balls. I couldn't get any more anywhere, so I had to adapt.
I'm not very tall, so I took a few stitches out of the length (the body is knitted sideways in one piece from right-front to left-front), but I could tell that hadn't saved me enough. So I knitted both sleeves at the same time, from the top down, reversing the shaping - the only way I could be sure they would end up the same length.
Because I knew they'd end up as 3/4 sleeves (at best), I didn't decrease as much down the arms so they stayed a little looser. On balance, I think I prefer it to longer sleeves with this slightly fluffy yarn. It looks OK with a short-sleeve T-shirt and bare lower arms, and I think it will also look OK with a long-sleeved top.