Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Lace carriage woes

I took out my lace carriage and the pattern drums would not move, not even a little bit. The old saying, 'if you don't use it, you will lose it' comes to mind.
With helpful advice and encouragement from fellow Ravelry members, I decided to try freeing up the pattern drums.
First I took off the plastic cover. Then I squirted lots of surgical spirit over the drums. I put a few drops of oil onto the moving parts, but to no avail, so back to Ravelry for more hints and tips.
Ozlorna advised using a hair-dryer to loosen up the old gunky oil.
I alternated between squirting with the spirits and blowing with the hair-dryer and eventually the drums began to turn. After about 2.5 days things began to move pretty well.
I have just tried the carriage out and lo and behold, it works!
I just did a swatch to try it out and here is the result;
I am very pleased with the result. I over-killed it with the steam in my haste to show off, but I now feel confident that I can now knit something wonderful with my lace carriage. Happy Knitting.

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Lace Carriage

I am about to try out my lace carriage. I have used it only once. When I bought my Studio 360 back in 1982, I couldn't wait to try out the lace carriage. I made a sweater for my (then) 2 year old daughter. It was a disaster. The stitches kept dropping off the needles and because I didn't really know any better, I wasn't sure how to re-form the stitches.
In the end I had a reasonable looking sweater, with mistakes here and there, but, I put the carriage away and have never even taken it out of the box since.
So why am I taking it out now?
Over the past 3 years or so, I have been a member of 'Machine Knitting' group on Ravelry. The group has been very helpful, with hints, tips, instruction, and links to various places for instructional video's and free patterns.
'Machine Knitting' has some very talented, friendly and helpful members. It is thanks to them that I am willing to brave the lace carriage once more.
Just before I rush into my craft room, I think I will have one more peek at the Ravelry Q&A Tread: Lace Discussions, with my notebook handy.
Happy Crafting everyone.

Monday, 27 May 2013

Doubled over neckband

Here is a copy of the doubled over neckband I use on my machine knit sweaters. I use it with my cut and sew necks.
I knit two backs of a sweater (this saves time on shaping) and then I cut one for the front. I sew with a zig-zag stitch and when I am happy with the shape, I cut the neck. Then I sew one shoulder and hang the neck stitches onto the machine, right side facing. Then I follow the instructions for doubled over neckband. I makes a really nice stretchy band so there is no need for buttons on the side of a child's sweater.
Here are the instruction from Glynne Jones

Doubled over Neckband with a stocking stitch border

After joining one shoulder, with RIGHT side of garment facing you, pick
up around the neck on to main bed (rough estimate of No. of stitches
required is the No. you cast on for the back).
Knit 3 rows stocking stitch at MT-1. Raise ribber, transfer stitches to get
the rib setup you want, hang comb and weights.
Knit enough rows to double over the band (I 'guesstimate' the number by
folding over the welt and seeing what looks 'right'). Transfer sts to main
bed, drop ribber down and remove combs etc.
Pick up last row of stocking stitch so that neckband is folded up. Knit 4
rows stocking stitch, one row nylon cord, several rows of waste yarn and
strip off from machine.
After joining second shoulder and sewing seam of neckband, pin down the
stocking stitch flap and backstitch through stitches in last row of main
yarn (use blunt tapestry needle and you won't need to remove waste yarn
until after you have done all the backstitching). Work the backstitching
into and out of each knitted stitch so that there is a little 'bar' between
each stitch.