Thursday, April 30, 2015

Celebrating Three Million YouTube Views and Ten Thousand Subscribers

Today's a big day for me on YouTube -

10,434 subscribers                     3,001,173 views

This may not seem like big numbers for YouTube generally, but for machine knitting, it's wonderful!

Thanks, everyone!

I used to celebrate by buying yarn, but I really must stop that!  And, I used to celebrate by munching out, but that's out of the question, too. 

Instead, I guess I'll just put up another video tomorrow.  Hint:  For May, it's a nifty tailored-looking trim for the bottom or top of knitting, accomplished with the latch tool.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Inspiration at Needles to Say

I love this little girl's cape, and especially like the edge trim.  If you click on a photo, you can get a bigger view and see the nice lace scallops:

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

2015 Seminar Dates

Thank you, Sasha, for reminding me that I ought to put a seminar schedule up on the blog so folks and see where I'll be teaching this year!  I only do a few each year - I really do love my day job, but it takes all day, you know? 

In case you want to sign up (you do, don't you?), I've included information for the local sponsoring groups. 

If you have not ever attended a machine knitting club meeting, or attended a teaching seminar, you are in for a very pleasant surprise!  Be good to yourself and try one!  If you can't make it to one of mine, there are a bunch of other great ones all over the country. 

You do need to hustle, though; Seminar organizers need you to pre-register so they can plan properly.  Many of them end up having to turn people away because, of course, they have space limitations.

Here are the seminars I have planned for 2015:

San Francisco, California - May 8 and 9.  The Machine Knitters Guild of the San Francisco Bay Area has a website, here.

Waynesboro, Pennsylvania - July 17 and 18.  This one is sponsored by The Knitting Cottage, 6810 Iron Bridge Rd, Waynesboro, PA 17268, (717) 762-1168.

Monroe, Michigan - July 24 and 25.  This one is organized by Cathy Reaume, (734) 243-3016.

Princeton, Minnesota - October 9 and 10.  This is Cindy's Knitting Room Seminar, organized by Cindy Schmatz, (612) 290-1279.

Dallas-Ft. Worth, Texas - October 24 and 25.  The DFW club has a website here.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

April's Video: Mobius Scarf with Garter Stitch Graft

Most of the time, when we do Kitchener Stitch, we're making an invisible seam in stockinette stitch.  Did you know that you can graft quite a few different knit stitches invisibly?  Garter stitch is particularly easy to graft, and as I taught the technique in "Knitter's Finishing School," I elected to show it with a few rows of waste knitting at the ends of the knitted fabric.  Then, after sewing the invisible graft, remove the waste knitting, and you're set.

Why waste knitting?  Most hand knitters graft from knitting needles using rote memorization of what to do.  Well, by using waste knitting;
  • You can see exactly how much to pull up the sewn stitches to exactly mimic a row of knitting
  • The knit fabric is secure on the waste knitting, and won't slide off the needles or unravel.
  • The row of waste knitting adjacent to the garment fabric actually follows the path that your sewn stitches will follow, so acts as an extra guide.
Why not knit a couple swatches and try this?  Remember the key rules for Kitchener Stitch, no matter what stitch fabric you're grafting:
  • Use a blunt needle.
  • Have enough yarn so you don't have to tie on more in the middle of the row.  It takes about three times the width of the knitting to sew all the way across.
  • Never pull the sewn stitches tight!  Just pull until they're the same length as knitted stitches.  Soft.  Loose.  Relax...
  • Always make sure you're inserting your needle into a LOOP, not just a space between stitches.  If you're not in a LOOP, you're going to have a hole!
  • There are two stitches, even if you can grab them in one push of your needle, on each side.  With garter stitch, on the bumpy side, it's through two bumps; on the leggy side, through two legs.
  • When you take that first stitch on the opposite side, always go first into the "used" hole, where your yarn came out last time you were on that side, then go into the "new" hole. 
Here's the new video:

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Knit Natters Machine Knitting Club Today

I'm demonstrating this anti-roll edge at knit club today.  Barbara's also demonstrating, teaching an absolutely adorable Mary Jane slipper on her bulky machine.  She's letting me use her machine for my demo, too, so I don't even have to carry a machine to club.

Here's my little demo, if you want to attend "virtually:"

Diagonal Anti-Roll Edge
By Diana Sullivan 

Here’s an anti-roll edge that doesn’t take a lot of time, is easy and genuinely creates a good-looking, anti-roll edge. 
Using the triple transfer tool, move the second, third, and fourth stitches from the edge over by one needle so that the second stitch goes on the end needle, the third stitch goes on the second needle, and the fourth stitch goes on the third needle.  Using the one-prong end of the tool, pick up the heel of the fifth stitch and fill in the empty needle left by the transfer.
Knit two rows. 
Repeat the transfer after every two rows.
Variations:  You can do this with the 2-prong tool, and that works fine.  It is also quite practical to do it with a 7-prong tool and get a wider fancy edge, as well.
Curious about the yarn in the photo?  It was one of my experiments, just a few yards of some 2000 yards-per-pound (skinny) white cotton chenille that I used for playing around with dyeing in KoolAid.  It’s pinker than the photo, not such a peach, more of a light salmon.  I made a small hank out of it and tye-dyed it with cherry flavor.  This was then knitted on the bulky machine at tension 5, but I think it would be better at about tension 4.  You could get it through the standard machine, and I worked up one project on the garter carriage at the loosest tension. 
I have also knitted this is quite a few other yarns and found that it'll give you a good edge, even in a clunky worsted weight yarn.  Try it!
I did a YouTube video with this demo a little while back.  Here it is: