Monday, July 27, 2009

June 09 Program: Knitting Fun with the Glitter Knitter of the Yarn Garage!

We couldn't have imagined a more fun and creative June Program than the program we enjoyed courtesy of our special guest, Steven Berg of the Yarn Garage!

Machine Knitting with the Glitter Knitter!

Located in Rosemount, Minnesota, the Yarn Garage is a full service - yarn, knitting and needlework station - everything you need and more to get your knit on! Steven, together with his sister Monika, started the Yarn Garage in 2003 as the roving, gypsy yarn and fiber art studio. They are always helping knitters and the needlework challenged and have put a modern twist on some great old traditional crafts by using unique and unusual novelty yarns!

Machine Knitting with the Glitter Knitter!

Here's the kicker - Steven's yarns aren't just for hand knitting and crochet - you can use many of his fine fibers on your knitting machine too! To prove his point, he brought lots of yarns - luxury, novelty, and all great quality to show off. He gave each group member a skein of yarn and a Scrappy Hat pattern to try out at home. Above all, Steven reminded us to expect and ENJOY the unexpected when knitting, especially with his yarns.

Follow Steven's lead and be sure to give your project a unique personality using clever and creative yarns!

May 09 Program: Thread Lace on a Bulky by Ellen Levernier & Cindy Schmatz

This past February we explored the Thread Lace technique on standard gauge machines, but did you know you can also create beautiful Thread Lace patterns on a Bulky machine? Make sure your bulky knitting machine has a fairisle setting, and you can get to work creating beautiful and unique BULKY Thread Lace!

Thread Lace on a Bulky

When selecting your yarn and pattern to create Thread Lace, there are a couple of things to remember:
  • For cohesive results, it's a good idea to ensure your thread and yarn colors match. That said, do a few test swatches experimenting with different yarn and color combos
  • Use a heavy yarn and a thin yarn for best results. For the "heavy yarn" you can use a double, triple, or even quadruple strand of your yarn. Ellen liked working with 4 strands of Alpaca Lace, while Cindy chose 2 strands of Yarn Country. Lace, Sport, and Fingering weight yarns are great options.
  • Avoid long floats.
  • Use weights - be sure to place them evenly along your work, moving them up as you knit.
  • The thread in feeder 2 or "B" will knit the pattern. Both yarns will knit together on non-patterned areas, so be sure to set the tension for knitting both threads together.
  • Set end needles to working position every row to ensure that both threads knit together.
Thread Lace on a Bulky
SK Machines (Silver Reed, Studio, Singer): put end stitches in hold every row.
KH Machines (Brother, KnitKing): Push back the end needles if selected by pattern every row.

  • Either side of your knitted work can be the right side, depending on your visual preference.
  • If you use tuck stitches in your pattern work, your piece will not curl.
  • Knit with a smooth rhythm, and pay attention to your edge stitches.
Thread Lace on a Bulky

It's scary to think that it's already time to start planning your winter knitting projects. Why not deviate form a basic scarf by sprucing it up with a little Thread Lace!

Thread Lace on a Bulky

Note: The terminology Thread Lace refers to that produced on a Brother machine, versus Punch Lace on Studio, Singer, and Knitmaster machines. In the end of the day, Punch Lace and Thread Lace are the same technique.