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Friday, 29 February 2008

A productive day off

Along with the old knitting machines I rescued from the tip, I also aquired a good few cones of yarn and quite a few old machine knitting books. Some had got damp and were useless, but there are some that are in good condition considering a lot go back to the 80's. As none of the yarn is labeled, I having to guess its weight. Though I am not too worried about the sizing as the moment, as I know if I stick to childrens sizes I will be able to sell them in the shop. Yesterday I found a pattern for childrens fingerless gloves/mittens, bang up to date and something customers have been asking for. A part cone of random yarn made them both and with enough left to make a matching hat. But that is for later. I also made an earflap hat in another random yarn. Both items will go with me to work today to be sewn up, pictures later. I have been amazed at how many of my customers gave up knitting, gave away all their patterns, needles and yarn. They now want to restart and are having to buy all new supplies. Quite an expensive exercise. But I realise that I am exactly the same with machine knitting. Something I started over 30 years ago, and for about 20 years was the love of my life. Then a new monster in the shape of computers came into my life. There was no room for both of them in my life, either physically or emotionally. I am afraid my lovely knitting machines lost out. Though I did relocate them to loving homes. Along with my not inconsiderable yarn supply and enough accessories and books/patterns, to stock a shop. An action I now regret deeply. There are so many things I miss and now need to replace if I can find them again. One of my most beloved tools was a 15 needle tool that transfered stitches from the ribber to the main bed - a long process with the single transfer tool. I have hunted on ebay and other machine knitting sites and seen no sign of one:( But the 7/1 transfer tool is still available and I will purchase soon. At one time I loved turning out the intarsia and found the perfect accessory for the job. I cannot remember what it was called, but was a long plastic round thing with pieces that fitted over the ribber and kept each colour yarn separate. I would really like to find another of those. I dare say there will be other items that come to mind as I really get back into the art of machine knitting. Though I will never again think my customers were mad to have junked their supplies, as I know I am as guilty as they. And looking on the bright side, at least they are spending in my shop:)

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