Knitting is a famous craftwork. In fact, knitting turns thread or yarn into cloth. Knitting consists of loops. These loops called stitches are obtained by pulling the thread through each other. Knitting is either done by hand or by machine. There are numerous and methods in hand knitting. In some, the end product may be entirely different and in some produce it may be similar. Flat knitting does the length of the cloth and the circular knitting produces a seamless tube. Using different yarns, kneedles, color, texture and weight produces different end products.
In the year 1527, the first knitting guild was started in Paris. Hand knitting went out of fashion many times but it started its revival in the 21st century. The number of women knitters increased about 150% in the year 2002 and 2004. International communities are also formed for knitting. There are networks where people share techniques and patterns and also run competitions.
Types of Knitting:
Weft knitting and warp knitting are the two major varieties of knitting. Weft knitting requires only a single yarn. One yarn for every stitch is used in warp knitting. Weft knitting is done either by hand or machine whereas warp knitting is done by machine generally.
Circular knitting is otherwise called as knitting in the round. It creates a seamless tube. A set of four or five double pointed needles is used for doing circular knitting. Flat knitting is used to produce rectangular pieces of cloth. Two straight knitting needles are used in this type and stitches are made in rows and horizontal lines. Hats, socks, mittens and sleeves are made by using circular knitting. Scarves, blankets and front and backsides of sweaters are made with flat knitting.
Flat stockinette stitch is the most common texture for the knitted garment and knit stitches worked flat is used for machine made stockings and T-shirts. Simple textures are made using knit and purl stitches, garter stitch, ribbing and moss and seed stitches. There is more number of complicated patterns in which slip stitch and heel and linen stitches are used. Small eyelet holes can also be created in the fabric. The use of yarn also changes the appearance of the garment. If the yarn is thick, the stitches will be more visible and if the yarn is thin, the texture will be finer.
The process of casting on begins a piece of knitting. It is the creation of stitches on the needle. Different methods of casting on are used. Thumb method and double needle method are the various methods in cast on. Thumb method is ideal for picking up stitches and double needle method produces firm edge on the border. The two styles of knitting are continental style and English style. In the English style yarn is held in right hand whereas in continental style the yarn is held in the left hand. Knitting needles, knitting machines are the tools used for knitting.
People find knitting as an enjoyable hobby.