Finishing Lace Knitting

finishing lace knitting

 

 

Knitting Lace: Finishing

This is the final entry in the series of blog posts on overcoming your fear of knitting lace. If you have missed any of the posts, they can be found on my blog page at Gina Mitchell Designs.

In this series on overcoming your fear of lace, we have been working through the prep and the actual knitting. In today’s lesson we talk about the most important step. Finishing your work. Just because you have finished knitting….does NOT mean your project is finished!

Are you catching the theme here? You must finish your work. So let’s take a look at what “finishing” means in knitting lace.

  • Weave in your ends – I know lots of knitters don’t like this step but obviously you can’t wear your item with the loose ends dangling there to unravel.
  • Bath – Your item need a nice gentle bath. You will be amazed at how quickly your knitting picks up oils, dirt, etc while you are working on it. So always give it a quick soak in a lovely wool wash.
  • Block – All projects need to be blocked. It is just a fact of knitting. However, lace is the most important of all. You have invested so much time in placing those lovely yarn-overs into your knitting that you must block it to open them up and show them off! We touched on blocking in the previous post. It is truly the key to successfully knitting lace. Look at the difference blocking makes in your lace work. finishing knitting lace  finishing lace knitting Finishing Lace knitting

Once it is dry, you are ready to show off your project.  Be prepared to accept all the compliments & accolades on a job well done.

You may now call yourself a “Lace Knitter”!

Congratulations on tackling a new technique & overcoming your “Fear of Knitting Lace”.

If any of the steps gave you a bit of trouble, remember you can contact me to get the help you need.

Thank you for reading, if you would like to get the entire series in one pdf document, sign up below & you will have access to all the resources I make available.

 

**Pattern photos featured in this series**

Night Jasmine Hat by Gina Mitchell Designs

Summer Solstice Shawl by Wendy Johnson

Baah One Skein Shawl by Fickleknitter

Sinopia by Hunter Hammersen

Lace Knitting: The Good Stuff

Lace Knitting: The Good Stuff is part 3 in the series of blog posts on overcoming your fear of lace. If you have missed any of the posts, they can be found on my blog page at Gina Mitchell Designs.

In this series on overcoming your fear of lace, we have been working through the prep. In today’s lesson we start to get into the good stuff. That’s what you have been waiting for right?

 

So let’s get started.

Here are the main things you need to take care of:

  • Read & study your pattern: Read & understand your pattern before you begin knitting. There is nothing worse than getting through an entire section of knitting and finding those dreaded words in the pattern…. “At the same time”! Most modern designers are doing away with this practice but it can still pop up. It’s also a good idea to check for techniques you might be unfamiliar with.
  • Swatch: Most knitters are not fond of being told to swatch. We find all types of tricks to prevent it. However, it really is necessary if you want to avoid issues while knitting your lace. Who wants to rip back because your fabric isn’t turning out correctly? This is a great time to practice those techniques you need to brush up on. I have lots of tips on swatching that will be available in our free Knitting Resource Library. This will be ready for you very soon but you can sign up now so you know when the site opens up.
  • Block: Remember, lace always looks like a mess until it is blocked. Blocking opens up the lace so you can see your pattern.

 

 

lace knitting

Blocking Illustration

Finally, you are ready to begin knitting your lace pattern. But there is no fear here because you have prepped well and are ready. So let’s review a couple of things to keep in mind as you begin knitting.

  • Read your knitting: As you knit, read your knitting so you always know where you are & that your pattern is working out as it’s supposed to. It is much easier to fix your mistakes as you go than to rip back a whole section when you finally realize there is a problem. Keep in mind, lace knitting is not mindless knitting.
  • Relax: If you are tense, your gauge will be off from what you achieved in your swatch. You are also more prone to fall victim to a knitting injury or soreness if you try to knit with tight muscles.
  • Remember: It is knitting. This is supposed to be fun & enjoyable. There is no mistake you make that can NOT be fixed. If you need help, there is no shame in taking a class or even a one-on-one session to walk you through the problems you run into.

 

This wraps up part 3 of my Lace Knitting series. I hope you are enjoying it. The next post, Lace Knitting: Finishing will be the last in the series. After that the entire series will be available to you in a PDF to keep & refer to whenever you need it.

Remember to sign up below to become a member of the exclusive email list where you will receive all kinds of knitting goodness.

Lace Knitting: Getting Started

Lace knitting: Getting Started            Lace Knitting

Lace knitting: Getting started gives you a general explanation of what is involved in learning to knit lace. There is no reason to fear this technique. Lace is simply the art of arranging knits, purls, yarn-overs and decreases in a specific order to create the pattern & fabric you want. There you have it. That’s it. The only techniques you need to know to knit lace are how to knit, purl, yarn-over and decrease! Now admittedly there are variations of these techniques you will use later to create more intricate designs. But for now, we are sticking with a simple plan to take you from swatch to shawl in no time at all.

Tips to get started on the right foot.

  • Yarn – Use a solid color worsted weight yarn to begin. A single ply is perfect, but any worsted you have on hand is fine.  Yarn in a variegated color, while making a beautiful project, is not the best to learn with. The yarn color pattern can make it difficult to see your stitches.
  • Needles – Grip is one of the most essential factors in choosing a needle. You don’t want a needle that is too slick for learning as your stitches will slide right off causing unnecessary frustration. So choose needles made of uncoated metal, plastic or wood to start. You will also want to look for a tip that is not too tapered as this will split your stitches. You may use straight needles or circulars for your first project. You will be knitting back & forth, not in a circle. Straight needles will probably be best and you can save the circulars for when you are knitting more intricate projects with lots of stitches. So let’s start with a straight wood needle that has a fairly blunt tip.
  • Stitch Markers – Stitch markers are your best friend for knitting lace. I recommend a nice set of 10 or so like the ones I list here. But, you can use anything from a loop of different colored waste yarn to a paperclip. As long as it easily fits on your needle it will work.
  • Waste Yarn – You will want to have a few lengths of worsted weight yarn on hand. Two or three strands about 12 – 15 inches long in a different color than your project yarn will be perfect. We will use these as lifelines in our knitting.
  • Notions – A small pair of sharp scissors, bent tip darning needle, t-pins for blocking.

That’s it for this week’s lesson Lace Knitting: Getting Started.

It’s time to gather your supplies and get ready to create your first lace sample. See you next lesson when we learn about knitting the lace swatch.

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