Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Inspiration at Knotty Knits and Naughty Kids

 I don't see a lot of fun knitting blog activity these days - but here's a super cute one - Tracy is knitting a gnome!


Saturday, August 7, 2021

New Video Today!

 Hi, all, it's August and here's my new video, a garter stitch button band:

Not a lot to say today - headed off to Knit Natters, where we're doing a yarn swap and I have a demo of a wriggle lace scarf.

Friday, August 6, 2021

Yarn Weights - Guest Blog from Margit Tritt

 Margit is a Silver Reed (Studio) knitting machine dealer in Colorado.  Her business is www.pacaknits.com.  

I greatly appreciate active dealers like Margit who are knowledgeable and provide services for machine knitters.  Margit has classes and parts.  Margit is now the Silver Needles Cone Winder dealer.  I have one of these wonderful machines, which I keep out and use regularly.

Margit recently wrote a useful essay about yarn weights which follows.  I have a previous essay about yarn weights here:  https://diananatters.blogspot.com/search?q=yarn+weight  If you want to have an enjoyable, productive experience in machine knitting, choosing the right yarn is critical!

Yarn Weight Categories 

Compiled by Margit Tritt, www.PacaKnits.com

Updated January 2020 

ARGH! Everyone seems to call yarn by different names using a confusing set of units! Hand knit and crochet, EU (Europe) vs. US, machine knit, weaving WPP (wraps per inch), YPP (yards per pound), nm (meters per 1 gram – metric yarns number), … depending on the system you’re using, 16/2 = 2/24 = 6720 yds / lb (cotton count vs worsted count) 

BTW, the basic conversions I know off the top of my head are: • 2.54 cm = 1 inch • 453.6 grams = 1 pound • 1 kilogram (kg) = 2.2 pounds 

Thank goodness for Google (and other search engines) and built in conversion computations. In the “old” days when I got my bachelor’s degree in mathematics, we used the CRC Standard Mathematical Tables and Formulae. I don’t remember what version I used but much of this info is available on calculators now. 

What works with what machine? I’ve combined info from various web sites to provide basic guidelines. Please go to the sources listed below and do your own research. When all else fails – SWATCH!! (I’m kidding – always always always make a gauge swatch for a knit item that requires specific dimensions.) Note: Silver Reed manuals have photos to correlate actual sizes of yarn to stitch dial settings and of course, the different gauge machines will support different sizes of yarn. Yet more sets of numbers that have no relationship to the table below! 

 I did not include #6 (Super Bulky) and #7 (Jumbo) yarns as these generally cannot be used as main yarns in any machine. However, they may work for weaving so keep your yarn stash! 

3/11 = Sport Weight 

4/8 = Worsted Weight 

2/11and 3/15 = Fingering Weight 

2/20 and 2/24 = Fine weight 

2 strands of 2/24 together = Fingering Weight. 

Here are some pertinent links:

Craft Yarn Council Standard Weight System

Swicofil Yarn Conversion

Wikipedia Units of Textile Measurement

One nm equals 1,000 meters of yarn per kilogram (1,000 m/kg). This equals 50 meters per 50 grams. A 1/8 nm yarn (usually just called 1/8, without the nm) tells you that the yarn has been spun 8 times longer than the standard and is therefore finer. You will get 8,000 meters per kilogram if your yarn is a 1/8. The first number in the name, or the 1 in 1/8 indicates the number of plies in the yarn. A 1/8 yarn has one ply, a 2/8 yarn has 2 plies, etc. A 2/8 yarn indicates the yarn was spun to 8,000 meters per kilogram, but then plied into a two-ply yarn. The finished yarn will therefore measure 4,000 meters per kilogram. 

A 3/8 yarn will have 2,666 meters/kilogram, or 8000 divided by 3. 

How does the general numeric system compare to the CYCA chart? From thick to thin: 

  • 4/8 yarn yields 1,120 yards per pound and is closest to what hand knitters consider a DK weight yarn or #4. 
  • 3/8 yarn yields 1,490 yards per pound, or sport weight yarn. Similar to a DK weight, but slightly thinner or #3. 
  • 2/8 yarn yields 2,240 yards per pound, for a fingering weight yarn or #2. 
  • 2/18 yarn yields 5,040 yards per pound and is considered laceweight or #0 - #1. 
  • 2/20 yarn yields 5,600 yards per pound and is also considered laceweight. The difference between 2/18 and 2/20 is slight for a hand knitter, akin to the difference between 4/8 and 3/8. 
  • 2/24 yarn yields 5,960 yards per pound, and again, is considered laceweight.  

Saturday, July 10, 2021

New Video - How to use the Weave-R on your LK150

Kris at Kris Krafter has a new goodie - it's a weaving arm for LK150 (also LK100 and LK140).  This is for these Studio plastic bed machines, only.

I have a new video showing how to use it.  It's a very nice accessory.  Kris has them available at www.kriskrafter.com.  

I think you'll enjoy weaving!  For one thing, it makes a wider piece of knitting than plain stockinette.  It has a really different look.  It eliminates most curl along the sides.  Also, it's a more substantial, warmer piece of fabric.

In the video, I promised to share some weaving charts that use just 8 stitches in width.  Why 8 stitches?  Well, the Needle Beetle does 8-stitch pattern needle section on these machines, and in the video, I'm using it for some cute counted patterns.  I've tested these charts and tweaked them until I am satisfied that they make attractive designs.  Two of the charts, Pull Up 1 and Pull Up 2, are pull-up designs, and I show how to do that in the video.  On the chart, the X marks the spot (well, the needle) you'll put the loops onto before you knit the pull-up row.  

Note that I'm numbering the stitches from right to left, because the Needle Beetle goes from right to left and we pick out the first 8 needles on the right.  Why not count from right to left every time?

I numbered the rows from bottom to top, and of course, you'll knit them from bottom to top, repeating the marked number of rows.  I keep my place with a Post-It note.

Check out books and magazines for more weaving designs and ideas. 

In the video, I demonstrate the first, second, third and fourth designs, working down the left-hand side of the charts.  After you play with these, you'll probably have ideas for more designs.  

Tips about weaving:

1. Swatch first!  I know, I always say this... but it works out that some yarns work great for weaving yarns and others simply don't cooperate.  There are lots of yarns that work for weaving and won't go through your machine as regular knit stitches, but some yarns just don't weave well.  Besides, you'll want to inspect the color contrast and see how puffy the yarn is against the background yarn.
2.  Pull the weaving yarn down a little as you begin across with the weaving tool.
3.  Do you need to rip out?  It rips out like regular stockinette.  First work the weaving yarn out of the needles, then rip the row of knitting.
4.  Do you need to re-weave the row because the Weave-R didn't catch every spot?  This happens to me when I forget to pull down.  First, make sure all the stitches are in the latches, and then do the needle selection and weaving again.

Saturday, June 26, 2021

Synnove's teddy bears!

 I think these photos on Synnove's blog of knitted items using her teddy bear charts is not to be missed!


I especially enjoy her baby designs.  

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Inspiration from Lorna

 Lorna (Ozlorna blog) is an expert, creative and prolific knitter, and during my recent seminars, I got to know her and enjoy her very much, as we did Zoom social times.

She has dyed with jelly beans and I just have to share this with you:


Thursday, June 17, 2021

Inspiration from Knotty Knits

 I sure do like this hand knitted stitch pattern -


Tuesday, June 15, 2021

Inspiration from Synnove

 Check out Synnove's charity baby hats:


They're handknitted.  We can do something similar on the machine - love the vertical stripes as well as the opportunity to use bits of what I already have.  You could use this video for a sideways short-rowed baby hat:

I realize I don't have the cute little points on top of the head.  I'd have to think about that...

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Inspiration at Marzipan Knits

 I've had pot holders on the brain lately, and apparently, Mar has, too!  Check out her wonderful use for thinner cotton with striking Fair Isle designs:


And bless her, she's provided the instructions!

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Inspiration at Yet Another Canadian Artisan

 I really like this tuck stitch - such deep texture!


Monday, June 7, 2021

NEW VIDEO! Cluster Edging

 I am absolutely crazy about this edging!  It is fantastic around blankets, it's easy to do, and it looks great.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021


Strings 2 Things 2021

Machine Knitting Seminar with Diana Sullivan

Get fired up and knitting in 2021!  

I'm having another high-value, content-rich online machine knitting seminar with something for every machine knitter, from beginner to adventurer.  

The emphasis in this seminar is on habit-forming projects that your friends and family will love.  There will be lots of interesting techniques taught along the way! 

The seminar is in February, and registrations are limited! Please sign up early to ensure your place. 

Register or see details:


Tuesday, January 5, 2021

First Video of 2021 - Five Stitch Braided Cable

Happy New Year!  Alright already, let's knit!

I just love braided cables!  Here's one for almost any machine:

Friday, January 1, 2021

Inspiration - Socks from Tom C.

 Sometimes I get a wonderful finished project email from a knitter with photos.

Tom C. emailed me these pictures of his socks, and, well, wow!

Here are some clever details on these socks:

  • The fair isle is under a hem so there are no floats inside.
  • The sock bottoms have every-other-needle fair isle for padding and looks
  • The pictures that personalize them are original! Tom drew the charts using a PPD and uploaded them,