Tools and Techniques- Blocking
|A Laundry Maid Ironing, Henry Robert Morland, imported from tate.org.uk|
|Blocking tools on my Clouds Wrap|
My collection of blocking tools this week include items I picked up at Knit Wit in Portland, but chances are your LYS has similar items in stock.
|Knitter's Pride Knit Blockers|
So, I have heard a number of comments on this tool. Some say you need more than one set of blocking mats, others suggest buying similar children's mats in a dollar store, or larger floor mats at Home Depot or Loew's. All are good suggestions. I choose to spend some money at Knit Wit, my home away from home LYS. The blocking mats can be configured to accommodate a triangular shawl, an oblong scarf, or sections of a sweater. They come in a plastic tote that neatly fits onto the bookshelf in my craft room. Retail price $ 30.00
|Blocking wires and T pins.|
I have had my blocking wires for quite awhile, I got them at Windsor Button before it closed. (Please, a moment of silence). They are stored in a sturdy cardboard cylinder and come in two diameters, the thinner wires bend to sloping curves while the thicker diameter is less pliable. Along with the blocking wires, I got a yard stick and T pins. I find the process of picking up edge stitches from a damp FO to be hypnotizing, so I don't mind the time it takes to apply the wires for blocking. It allows me to use fewer pins and gives a firm edge to the knitted item. I find when I don't use the wires, I end up with scalloped edges and that isn't always my preference. The set of blocking wires, pins and yard stick retail for $19.99 at Knit Picks. (Link here).
|Sock blockers from Knit Picks|
|Blocking wires doing the trick to open up stitches of mohair and art yarn.|
- Fill a large basin with warm water.
- Add a capful of wool wash, such as Soak or Eucalan.
- Push the knitting into the water, squeezing out the air bubbles.
- Leave garment to soak for twenty to thirty minutes.
- Pour water out of basin or drain sink.
- Using a towel, lay the knitting out, roll towel up and squeeze excess water out.
- Use a dry towel, spread it out over blocking mats.
- Place knitting on towel. Press and smooth but do not stretch the garment.
- Using the schematic from your pattern, lay the knitting out to match the measurements.
- Anchor the knitting with blocking pins.
- If you are using blocking wires, use the tip of the wire to pick up stitches on the selvedge edge.
- Spread the knitting and wires and use T pins to anchor.
- Leave your knitting to dry, a fan can speed up this process.
Craftsy blog: Blocking, a Knitting Tutorial
Purl Bee: Blocking
Can you share a tip or trick on blocking?