Crochet, Karen's Korner, Knitting

Working With Hanks Of Yarn

Working With Hanks Of YarnI have previously not had much experience working with hanks of yarn, but was recently asked to knit a jacket for a friend’s little girl. I suggested she check out the range available at The Wool Company. I really love their yarns and the fact that they are high quality and locally made. The wool she chose comes in 200g hanks.

Working With Hanks Of Yarn Working With Hanks Of YarnMy original plan for winding the wool into balls was to use one of the dining room chairs but then I decided to try something else. The back of the chair was not quite the right width and was a bit high for me to work with. It occurred to me that one of the back cushions off my sofa might be more suitable and it was. The cushion was just the right size and it was easy to move around too.

Working With Hanks Of Yarn Working With Hanks Of YarnAs I started winding the wool I started wondering about how I was going to get an idea of how much I was using as I was knitting the garment. I came up with the idea of using the kitchen scales. I wound the wool until I got to 25g then turned the ball 90 degrees and wound on another 25g, making a total of 50g. I repeated this procedure, turning after every 25g, and it has worked really well.

I have a tendency to change patterns a bit as I go (see “Using Patterns as a Guide”) so it has been very useful to know my yarn usage. I have made the garment significantly longer than the pattern and have been able to be confident that I will have enough wool to complete the garment.

I hope these tips can be useful to others of you who are working with hanks. I would love to hear any stories and tips that you might like to share.

Lace Making

Lace Making

Lace Making
Image courtesy of Google

Lace can be made using a number of different techniques. It was originally made using fine threads of linen, silk, silver or gold. Today it is most commonly made from cotton, although it is also possible to get linen and silk thread. Machine made lace is often synthetic.

Bobbin lace is made using a cushion and pairs of bobbins. It can range in complexity from simple edging or bookmarks, to extremely intricate pieces using large numbers of bobbins.

Lace MakingLace Making






Both photos courtesy of Google

Needle lace, as the name suggests, is made using a needle and thread. Hundreds of small stitches form the lace. Some types can be made more quickly than bobbin lace, but others take a lot longer. Purists see it as the pinnacle of lace making.

Cutwork lace includes Broderie Anglaise. It is made by removing small pieces in a woven fabric, then binding the resulting holes, or filling them with embroidery. It is related to drawn thread work.

There are two variations of tape lace. Mixed tape lace usually uses machine made tape and various needle lace fillings. Bobbin lace makes the tape at the same time as the lace.

Lace can also be crocheted or knitted. Knotted lace includes macramé and tatting.

Lace evolved from other techniques so it is not possible to pinpoint where and when it originated. In the late 16th century there was a rapid development in lace. Bobbin lace and needle lace became dominant in both fashion and home décor.

My interest lies in bobbin lace, crochet and tatting. These are the areas I will focus on, but I may look at other techniques as well. It is always stimulating to try something new.