Sunday, August 17, 2014

Machine Knitting Trip Part 2: Knitting

The 2 day intensive machine knitting course at the Textile Arts Center in Carroll Gardens was incredibly informative.The instructor, Mandy Kordal, Really knew her stuff, using a combination of demos and one on one instruction to make sure everyone was able to grasp the basics.

The facilities at this place are great. There were a huge number of looms, a dye room, the knitting machine space, industrial sewing machines, and what looked like a space for screen printing fabric. I would totally recommend checking it out.

In the beginner class, we learned a few different cast on and bind styles, a folded hem, needle positions, eyelets/decreases, increases, and some partial knitting. There was a packet handed out with resources and recaps of all the things we went over in the class. Though the 2 days was not enough time to get used to a lot of these new skills, the packet has been a great reference at home.

Here are a few more images of my swatches. They aren't spectacular, but you can see things starting to happen. I am confident that I could now knit a tee shirt or tank with shaping and a rounded neck. This is a great improvement from struggling to cast on without jamming the carriage.
Simple change of tension.
A picot hem.

Experimenting with changing stitch count, weight and gauge.
Practicing multiple decreases and increases to make a step pattern. I am improving now an leaving less loops at the ends of the rows.
2 rates of increase along the edge of a swatch (sideways). This leads me to believe that I am capable of making a raglan sweater pretty soon.

Since taking this class, I have been able to bring these skills home and apply the cast ons to the ribber. It is great to be able to do what I've been trying to do for such a long time. I have no doubt that the advanced class which focuses on garment making is just as worth while.

I will be positing a a few images of swatches next week when I have less work. Maybe even a little garment ... To read about the shopping part of this trip, Go here.

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