Sunday, December 31, 2017

Happy New Year

Along with all the new hopes and promises the new year will bring us, I also hope it brings us a lot more opportunities to knit together.  Wishing you a very happy and successful year ahead!

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Knitting Machine Control Board

Ever have one of those moments when you don't know how you ended up on a website?  I did tonight and found some good information to pass along.

Take a look at this alternative for your dead circuit board (expensive and hard to find) or if you want to use your computer to download images to knit:

Evil Mad Scientist Interface Boards

From their website:

"This is an  open source hardware and software project that provides an alternative way to control the widely-loved Brother KH-9xx range of knitting machines using a computer. There are other hacks (such as Img2TrackKnitic and electro-knit) which work with certain machines in certain conditions. The AYAB interface works with all Brother KH-9xx machines except the KH-970."

I have and have used Img2Track to download pictures from my Mac directly into the memory of my Brother machines.  This requires a special cable (easily available) and is only 60 stitch (pixels) wide, you can purchase an upgrade for 200 stitches.

The Evil Mad Interface board is about $80 USD and simply replaces the interface board on all Brother electronic machines.  Also, you can easily unplug the AYAB Interface and plug the original board back in.  No special cable needed and will also replace the power cord via the cord provided.

I may want to give this a try!

Monday, October 30, 2017

Sandwiched Buttonhole - Tried & True Method

This is not a new method but a tried and true one!  Here, Susan Guagliumi takes us through it on HD video up close and clear!  You can use this method for a plain band as well.

If you have a large garment or rather not poke the needles through your garment piece in this way, there is another method with the same results (not sandwiched)!

Knit the band then pick up your first row of band (from the ravel cord row) bring out needles to hold (stitches behind latches) and knit one row (this will make the garter row).  Facing you is the right side of the band, remove on WY.  Hang the edge of the garment public side facing you.  Push garment edge behind the latches and hang the band garter row facing the garment edge, open stitches in the needle hooks.  Pull needles through the garment edge.  Manually knit 1 row and chain cast off.  You want the row loose enough to allow the garment edge stretch as needed.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

A Perfect Mitered Neckband

I have done this many times when I make V-Neck Pullover Vests for myself.  My reason for wearing  knitted vests is a result of our mild winters here in Las Vegas, it's perfect!

Take a look at Diana Sullivan's clear and precise video tutorial on how to achieve a nice looking and neat mitered neckband.

I like to have a nice garter row along the neck opening, here is how.  I knit the neck band off the garment then attach.  Take the sweater against the machine and decide how many needles you will use.  On the same number of needles, start with a at least 10 rows of waste yarn and one row of ravel cord. Knit the neckband as in Diana's video.  Pick up the first row of stitches above the ravel cord and hang on needles, knit one row at garment tension, remove on waste yarn (or remove on garter bar).

Hang the garment on the same number of needles with public side facing you and push behind the latches.  Next, hang the neckband in the hooks of the needles with garter row facing the garment.  Pull the neckband stitches through the garment stitches.  Pull all needles out to hold and with neckband yarn knit one very loose row.  Chain cast off.

This creates a nice finish with a garter row in-between the garment neckline and neckband.

Monday, October 2, 2017

I'm Okay...

To those of of you who had reached out to me today, I am fine and thank you.

Horrific thing that happened here in Las Vegas last evening, the entire Las Vegas valley is trying to come to grips with this.

I was so relieved to hear all of our 620 employees are fine as are their families.  My prayers and sympathy to those that are not as fortunate.

To give my mind a rest and do something I find comforting I am heading to the studio to make something...

May you all be safe, always.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Do You Have A Mid-Gauge Knitting Machine?

Take a look at Diana's new book and DVD set - "Mid-Gauge Mastery."  Looks like another masterpiece!

She created a progressive project book along with two DVD's packed with great information.  Baby blankets, shawl, scarf, kitchen scrubbie's, baby sets, mittens, socks, ear flap hats and etc.

Diana's courses are fantastic for beginners and seasoned machine knitters.  Machine knitters can always learn from other knitters even if just the way "others do things."  The cost is nominal at $25!

Just click  - Diana's Mid-Gauge Mastery

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Joining Yarn

There are many times as we knit a manufactures knot is buried deep in a cone of yarn and only discovered as you are knitting along (usually in the middle of a row).  If I am knitting stockinette stitch I can easily rip back stitches to the end of a row, and start the yarn after the knot.

If knitting a stitch pattern or in the middle of some short row shaping it can be a bit messy to get back to the beginning of a row and maintain the integrity of the pattern or short rows.  This is when I turn to the "Russian Join" method.

This is a strong join and when knit is usually never visible without tails to weave in, it slips right through the machine smoothly.  Simply cut out the knot and create the join as shown in the video below.  This is also very helpful with yarn broken during repurposing or winding mishaps.

Take a look, you will like this as much as I do!

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Great Whitening Info


Yes I am still here and still knitting.  Have been so very busy in all aspects of normal life.  Hoping you are all doing well too.  I have been teaching locally here in Las Vegas and just received another request from a new machine knitter for some starter classes.  It's great to meet enthusiastic and eager knitters and see them get on their way.  Last year I was invited to teach at several seminars, it was unfortunate I could not make it, hoping the organizers didn't get annoyed with my having to cancel.  It's so hard to commit so far in advance especially when things pop up work wise which prevented me from being away.

I do get quite a bit of questions and comments sent via the blog to my email.  When a reader asks  questions via a reply to a post it is very difficult for the blogger to answer and when we do the answers are buried in the comments under the blog entry.

Better to email me direct, just click on the button on the right side of the blog.

I have recently been asked (many times) about how I whiten the yellow plastic and received this information from Mandy in New Zealand today:

This process is a chemical reaction rather than just a bleach, and thus the UV rays are an important part of the process. It is so that the Bromine that leeches out of the plastic and settles on the outer layers, yellowing the plastic is catalysed to the H202. I did this with a Singer 323's carriage that was so damaged by sun exposure that the whole machine was yellowed to brown! You could even see a brown liquid come off the plastic after the process was done. I found the 40Vol (12% H2O2) at my local pharmacy. I also used a UV lamp at night (as it has been winter here in New Zealand) in conjunction with the sunlight to speed the process up a bit. 

Mandy is correct the UV light is important in removing yellow from the plastic.  I have also tried only using 40 vol creme peroxide (found in a beauty supply) and have had excellent results.  It works a bit slower than the more involved formula I have posted.  You simply coat the plastic (liberally) with the creme peroxide then wrap it in plastic (clear) so it does not dry and place in the sun.

A note off topic, I just completed a gift of 2 pairs of black socks using a solid black wool sock yarn.  I was quickly reminded why I do not favor knitting with any black yarn.  I need a spot light or bright daylight when working with black.

Have you checked out the Butterfly Stitch Diana demonstrated this month?

Diana's August Video