The Sewing Place

Blocking??

b15erk

Blocking??
« on: November 09, 2017, 09:26:26 AM »
Any tips?

I've never done it before, but on the Sea Nymph sweater, I can see that it would benefit, mainly because, I unpicked? frogged, tinked? so many times at the beginning of this project, so the knitting doesn't look too neat.

I'm on the last lap with this, just the sleeves to do, and it would be nice to know that it can look rather nicer than it does at present.....

Jessie
Jessie, who is very happy to be here!!  :),  but who has far too many sewing machines to be healthy, and a fabric stash which is becoming embarrassing.

Ploshkin

Re: Blocking??
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2017, 09:59:48 AM »
I do block knitting but when I did my sweater in the round I realised I didn't know how I was going to do it.  Having done magic loop for the first time it definitely needed the knitting evening up a bit.
In the end I hand washed the whole thing in lukewarm water then rolled it in a towel to squeeze out the excess water. I left it flat for a day so that it was damp rather than wet then put a cloth over the top and gave it a steam all over then turned it over and did the other side then left it flat to dry completely.
Not very technical and a bit of a faff but it definitely improved the look of the knitting and I've worn the sweater a lot.
Life's too short for ironing.

b15erk

Re: Blocking??
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2017, 10:05:51 AM »
Thanks Plosh, that's helpful.  I thought I didn't block, as I don't use special pins or boards or anything, but I do do something like you've just said.

I hand wash, roll in towels, pull to shape, and dry flat.  Is that blocking?  If it is I haven't got a problem!  ;)

I'm using cotton yarn, so I may have to check how it will behave.

Jessie
Jessie, who is very happy to be here!!  :),  but who has far too many sewing machines to be healthy, and a fabric stash which is becoming embarrassing.

Francesca

Re: Blocking??
« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2017, 11:11:46 AM »
I block. I have the proper pins. It does make a difference.

I wash using Soak in the sink, which has been worth every penny as I use it for my undies too. Then I have four foam playmats that interlock together that I got from Argos pretty cheap. I lay the knitting out on those and block using the T pins. Especially useful for lacework.

Ellabella

Re: Blocking??
« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2017, 11:15:49 AM »
A gentle wash is the best way I've found for evening everything out, stitches seem to settle into place.

Then, as you say, press between layers of towels. You can press very firmly here, my friend puts hers on the floor and stands on it, walking carefully over the whole area, it helps to draw the water out.  I then lay out on a dry towel and smooth everything into shape.  I only find the need to pin if anything is rolling up where it shouldn't, but I'm not as professional as Fran.
Desperately trying to alliterate in North Yorkshire

Ploshkin

Re: Blocking??
« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2017, 17:33:49 PM »
I block individual bits on the ironing board (not always quite big enough) when knitting flat but an all in one sweater couldn't really be treated the same way.
Jessie, mine was 50% cotton 50% wool and I think it benefited from the treatment because not having the elasticity of pure wool the knitting has more of a tendency to look a bit uneven.
Life's too short for ironing.

Kenora

Re: Blocking??
« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2017, 17:52:06 PM »
I block using a large foam-covered pressing board, which is then covered in a check fabric so that I can use the checks to keep edges straight if necessary. I don't have the special pins but use loads of glass-headed pins on the edges of the knitting so that it doesn't go wavy.

I use a dampened pressing cloth and a hot iron for anything containing wool, but with a very light touch of the iron. For acrylic I use steam, with the iron just hovering over the knitting - not actually touching it.
Minding my P's & Q's in Portreath