I have been humming and hawing about machine knitting for so long but I wasn’t sure what it was that was holding me back. It has taken my latest (machine based) project to help me realise what the problem was.
I have always been a process knitter. I enjoy the process of making something and often was not bothered about what I ended up making. I would give away knits or leave them languishing at the back of the wardrobe until it was time to have a clear out for the charity shop, some I admit I could not even summon up the enthusiasm to sew up. Many of my projects were not loved. One was used to teach myself cables, another to experiment with socks and yet another might be an attempt at lace for the fifty millionth time (I am simply no good at lace knitting).
I think that the root of many of these problems, especially the sewing up issues, come from a limited attention span. I won’t say it’s short because to persist with a hand knit you have to have a pretty good attention span, but it just didn’t stretch much past a week.
My new project is one I was thinking about over Christmas. I was given a stool with a top that was looking a bit tired.I retopped it with some parachute cord (thank yarn for the internet I have no idea where I would have got that from otherwise) and then thought it would be nice to knit a cover for it.
Now as an undertaking that would have taken me weeks and months in hand knitting, I can almost grantee you that it wouldn’t have been finished let alone sewn up. Instead over the course of one ‘Last Tango in Halifax’ (an hour long uk drama, bit twee but very enjoyable – just in case you were wondering) and only one more hour I produced the cloth, three different punch cards, three lovely patterns, and within a week, enthusiasm still bubbling, it was sewn up.
Here is the end result.
It is not perfect, needs some work around the bottom, but my word I’m chuffed with it, and my even husband, (the type of person who wouldn’t notice when you’re wearing a leg brace and asks if the thing he hasn’t noticed is something to do with your hair- good guess, usually right, but massively wrong in this case) noticed the cover and said it looks good.
I am a convert I am now a produce knitter. I want my knitwear to be sewn up, to come to life and sparkle. I have spent years learning and now I want to design and see my creations appear before me in hours not days or weeks. I know I have still to learn the skills needed by a good machine knitter but I am prepared for that, In the meantime I love my machine I love the punchcards, and the fair isle function, and I love my, blissfully unaware of most things, husband.