Creative Education: Machine Knitting

Mastering a new craft takes time and commitment.
And money!
Tools and materials and patience all come at a premium. For me, they don’t usually arrive all at the same time.

In my case, the money and opportunity to buy a knitting machine came nearly a year ago. The patience, time, and what I like to think of as my capacity to learn, are all coming together, now. I jumped in with both feet when I first brought the machine home, but I often experience blocks when I first try something new and when I return to it I can’t imagine why it ever seemed so difficult.

Does that happen to anyone else?

This foray into machine knitting has been easier and more importantly, it makes sense. I understand what I’m trying doing as opposed to blinding flipping switches and levers. This makes all the difference, for me. This knowledge was hard earned through closely reading the (many, many) manuals that came with machines (I truly got a ton of stuff for what I’m only  just beginning to understand was an outstanding price) viewing many excellent YouTube videos (Roberta Rose Kelley is a genius) and researching and reading machine knitter’s blogs. I immersed myself in learning different methods, in different mediums and from different points of view. And in an unhurried manner. Which is pretty important for learning a new skill, too.

As you can see, things were swimming along. So much so, I hadn’t stopped to think of what I was going to do with the narrow-ish strip of knitting. Impatience was telling me to keep going and figure it out later. Patience reminded me that I don’t need a garment (self-made or otherwise) that I don’t really like. So, off it came.

High on my success, I moved on to the ribber attachment.
Where this happened.

This was as far as I got, all day. I, literally, spent all day Sunday trying to work this ribbing past the third row. Nothing doing. Some cheer leading and advice via Instagram has me anxious to try again.

But first, I must make dinner. If I eat anymore take out I’ll turn into a big pot of grease and fat. That’s what I feel like when I have tons of outside food.

After the ribber, I have intarsia and lace carriages to master and two additional tools, a yarn changer and automatic linker to get stuck into. It must be said, again, the materials and tools are all in amazing condition. I knew they were old, knitting machines of this type are not really manufactured anymore, but check out the date on the receipt.

1984!! And it’s like new. I’m so grateful to the woman who listed this for sale. With no experience with knitting machines I would have no way of knowing if it even worked. The more I investigate (the tools and the price) and the more I play around with it (and note the condition and many extras), the more gratitude I feel.

And, as always, I am grateful for the chance to explore new crafts and expressive my creativity.

I’m a lucky gal 🙂


12 thoughts on “Creative Education: Machine Knitting

  1. I’ve been mastering the art of machine knitting for a little over a year now as well! It’s so nice to have youtube videos and bloggers sharing the knowledge. I was following this blog when she suddenly started machine knitting awhile back and it was amazing:
    I highly recommend it.

  2. I was just wondering if you’d gotten anywhere with this. How cool! Do you think someday you could do all the long stockinette bits of your hand knitting on there and then switch back to hand knitting for the fun and complicated bits?

  3. I’m so amazed that you are tackling this! It’s such a high to learn a new craft, and I think your trial and error, touch and go, unhurried approach is the BEST way to learn! My mind is just swimming thinking of all the lovely knits you are going to be whipping up in no time! Way to go Nettie!! And thanks for sharing with us – keep us updated!! I’m so intrigued to see where this goes!

  4. Very cool! I know nothing about machine knitting but can’t wait to see more of your adventures. I’m the same way, BTW. It takes a while for me to buy the tools/supplies, do the research/learning, and then actually take my first baby steps into a new skill.

  5. This is so awesome! As a person in a field of education there is something seriously good for the mind and soul to be in the learning seat especially for something so enjoyable! Here is to lots of rad adventures!

  6. Ooooo, I’m going to love seeing your posts on machine knitting. You are indeed a lucky girl to get a great deal! Have you ever thought about taking the machine knitting course at FIT? I don’t see it listed on course horse but I know that there is one. Some of the girls in my knitwear class are in it this semester.

  7. Well I found you tonight when I started searching for the knitting machines I am about to inherit! They are all Singer and all stored in their original boxes. They come to live with me on Thursday and I am excited! Although I have to say I’m envious of that lace carriage you have! I am lace crazy & already dreaming about making lace shawls. LOL
    model 155
    model 360k
    KR7 knit radar contour (intarsia or fairisle?)
    AG30 carriage

  8. oops I didn’t finish! There is a supplier in the UK that I’ve been buying knitting industry remainders from for the past 10 years or so and handknitting with them. Now I’m getting excited about getting cones of luxury yumminess (cashmere, alpaca, mohair, merino, angora, silk, linen, etc!) Anyway, thought you might like to know about it for inspiration & motivation!

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