4KCBWDAY2 A Mascot Project.
Your task today is to either think of or research a project that embodies that house/animal. It could be a knitting or crochet pattern – either of the animal itself or something that makes you think of the qualities of that house.
Alternatively it could be a type or colour of yarn, or a single button. Whatever you choose, decide upon a project and blog about how and why it relates to your house/creature.
Whilst writing about my chosen house yesterday I came to the realisation that though I am always trying to stretching myself to try and learn new techniques to further my knitting skills and to find the best way to tackle any knitting challenge, I hadn’t actually learned a new form of knitting for some kind. This is partly because ‘types’ of knitting are finite, and after lace, cables, colour work, etc, there are only so many others to try before splitting forms of knitting into further categories blurs the definitions so much as to make them indistinct.
One knitting style I have been thinking of for some time, however, is twined knitting. I have read about twined knitting a number of times when reading about Scandinavian knitting traditions, and became quite interested in the subject when I bought the book ‘Northern Knits’ by Lucinda Guy.
With this is mind I set about researching and learning about how to knit twined knitting. I read up on the basic stitches and how to knit the decorative elements. For those readers who don’t know what twined knitting is, it’s a form of knitting that involves knitting alternate stitches with two balls or ends of yarn, and twisting the yarns per each other before each stitch to entwine them together. This give a beautiful fabric with less stretch but more resilience than stockinette, though the overall effect looks much the same. It’s absolutely perfect for items that need to be both warm and hardwearing, such as mittens.
As the yarns need to be twisted between each stitch it means that working with two differently coloured yarns will either give a narrow vertical strip or one-stitch checkered pattern to the finished item, something that I thought I might be able to explore using some wonderful Zauberball goodness.
But after about 12 rows of knitting I am struggling to see if the benefits of this style of knitting (added warmth and resilience) justify the extra work. The twined knitting is actually pretty quick to knit once you get the rhythm, but having to stop and untangle the yarns (which necessarily become twisted together de t the action of twining them together) really stops the relaxing flow of my knitting so that I can’t sit back and enjoy knitting a few rows in front of the TV as I keep having to stand up to try and let the knitting untwist itself (which is not always easy do to the single ply nature of the Zauberball yarn and it’s wish to cling to itself as it unwinds, leaving the fibres matted together).
I’m a little bit further on with the knitting from when this picture was taken, but I feel a bit torn now. It’s a simple skill and one that I do like the results of as it’s pretty much indistinguishable from stockinette – but that’s also part of what is holding me back and making me wonder if I should just rip it out and find something new to try (I still haven’t given double knitting a go!) and something that has a little more return for the time invested. What say the readers? Persevere or find a new skill to play with?
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