Knitted Lace 1
Knitted lace is a continuation of regular knitting. The challenge is to create beautiful designs with fine threads and needles.
Familiarise yourself with the general guidelines. Look for reference books that will give you the information for all requirements. Keep complete details of the books that you refer to… name, author, publisher book number and year of printing. Always name the source of the pattern you use. Full details of your bibliography is put last in your presentation.
Begin a diary of your work, covering name of pattern, source, thread name and size, needle size, why you chose this pattern, name the technique/s being worked and any problems you faced working your sample. Submit your pieces in your portfolio in the order you worked them. This will show the improvement in your skills as you progress. Include abbreviations and symbols used for patterns to show you understand them.
Do not be afraid to experiment with many yarns. Comment on how they worked for you, good and bad points. It pays to wash the sample to see how the yarn behaves washed and how it reacts to stiffeners. This is lace that needs to be stiffened. Blocking of your work is critical . Don’t be afraid to use many pins when stretching your work. Use a marked outline on a cotton base to keep your edges even. Remove pins only when completely dry. Name the stiffener that you use.
Some threads are easier to work with to get the even texture of cloth, i.e. stocking stitch parts of the de- sign. It is hard to achieve an even cloth with hard thread such as Coats Crochet. Softer threads such as Cebelia are easier to achieve this. Tension must be consistent to achieve the best. Watch your tension at the beginning and the end of each row and in circular knitting when using 4-5 needles where the tread goes from one needle to the other. Note what you do to achieve the best outcome. Carefully choose the thread and needle size to suit your piece. Use all yarns in your samples.
When sending work for assessment always send flat. Do not fold as the lace will stretch a little and when laid out will not be flat. In those cases send the pieces rolled in a cylinder The test piece needs to be worked to be the same size. The pattern should be written out using the pattern method you like. Include thread and needle sizes. Don’t forget to block this. If you choose to use a pattern you have designed please include the pattern too. Please do not submit babies clothes. Explore other ways of presenting examples of knitted lace.
- Mary Thomas’s Book of Knitting Patterns is worth searching for.
- Knitted Lace Doilies by Tessa Lorant. She has other titles.
- Knitting Lace, a Workshop with patterns and projects by Suzanne Lewis
- First Book of Modern Lace Knitting, by Marianne Kinzel
- Second Book of Modern Lace Knitting by Marianne Kinzel
- Hubert Niebling’s designs available through The Book Depository: 400 Knitting Stitches: A Complete Dictionary of Essential Stitch Patterns:
- The Magic of Shetland Knitting by Elizabeth Lovick.
Knitted Lace 2 and 3
Keeping in mind the information for achieving Stage 1, explore further the use of threads and yarns. Seek out designs that challenge. There needs to be a continuation of improvement in the way your knitting is done and presented. In choosing your major stage 1 piece, pick the one you feel is the best example of your work at that stage. Stage 2 must then follow on showing improvement. Take particular notice of your tension, the finish on the sides of work and the finished blocking. Poor blocking will spoil all the work you have done. To check out how well you have done take a picture of it and print it, then examine it carefully and note the discrepancies. You can go back and re-block dealing with these. The hardest part of the lace is getting all the crochet loops even and in a smooth curve. Work examples of all requirements, giving source of the technique. If the technique is one you have found on YouTube please give the URL for the site. It would be advisable to include drawings to show the progression of the technique.
When it is your own design you are submitting remember to include the pattern. If you wish to add the process that would be helpful in accessing your piece. If you have chosen to adapt a pattern, please include the original and how you adapted it. If you choose to use another’s difficult pattern, include the reasons you chose it .
Above all enjoy what you are doing; it should never be a chore. Lace making and designing patterns to make should be enjoyable giving you hours of pleasure as you use your hands to create items of beauty. You are sharing yourself as you make theses heirlooms for your family.
Do not get discouraged, these notes are a guide and hopefully be a bit of help. They have been put together by an ALG Proficiency Assessor.