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Posts tagged ‘knitting terms’

Ask Amanda: What type of increase should I use?

Increasing, at its most basic, is simply adding another stitch to the total number on your needle. The potential problem is that there are many different techniques for knitting increases, which can make it seem very confusing!

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Ask Amanda: Which side of my knitting is the right side?

Remember what it was like before you learned how to read? Every time I wanted to know what something said, I’d have to ask my mom or dad. Letters looked like weird scribbles, and I was always in awe of older kids and their almost magical ability to decipher writing.

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Feel it out…

In the last post,  Norah described Pure Merino Heathers as having a “slightly dry hand,” and blog reader Marty asked us to elaborate on this. 


“Hand” is an elusive, idiosyncratic when it comes to yarn. I like to borrow a few terms from the culinary world to explain what hand means–it is similar to the multi-sensory descriptors of “mouthfeel” and Japanese concept “umami”. The only way to develop your conception of hand is to head to your local yarn shop and revert to a childlike state!

A yarn might feel squeaky, crunchy, fluffy or slick. Knitting with it might be a pleasure or a trial–it all has to do with the combination of fibers, the twist and the amount of processing it has gone through from sheep to shelf. I’ve noticed that the combination of a high twist, super-smooth alpaca and bouncy wool in Cuzco make my knitting go REALLY quickly. For me it has a sponge-like hand.

When Norah says ‘dry’ I immediately think of an unmercerized cotton or a starchy linen, maybe something like Love It or Linen Jeans. Words used to describe these yarns are ‘cool, matte, well-worn tee, stonewashed jeans’. A yarn with a dry hand is great to knit with in the summer and will create crisp, comfortable garments that aren’t overly soft or fuzzy–like Norah said, perfect for menswear and really anyone who wants a no-fuss casual garment. 

Thinking about Pure Merino Heather has just made me SUPER WISTFUL for my dream wardrobe that I’ll never have time to knit, Urban Layers from NG v1 …SIGH…one day I will knit a Kaari and never take it off! 






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