Among the different types of knitting, felted knitting is one of the less complicated but invariably a more time consuming project. However, if you have discovered ordinary knitting as a highly rewarding endeavor, then you are sure to find felted knitting to be downright addicting as it gives you free rein to unleash your creative imagination. There are a number of great products that you can create with this particular technique such as slippers, purses, placemats, dolls, coasters, hats and so much more!
How Felted Knitting Works
Basically, the process involves the breaking down on the all-natural animal fibers what includes angora, alpaca and wool through washing machine agitation. The animal fibers are subjected to heat and moisture and are then agitated so that the bond that wraps around the hair is loosened up that will cause the individual fibers to expand. This process will then create a smoother felted surface.
Felted knitting is generally accomplished using a combination of wool and animal felt. When purchasing yarns, pay careful attention to the percentage of synthetic ingredients, which should ideally be not more than 15 percent. When you purchase wool, keep notice to the indications in the label to determine if it can be machine-washed or not, since machine washable wools should not be used in felting because it is less receptive. When you are using your washing machine in felting, it is advisable to keep the yarns in a pillowcase that has a zip or any bag with enclosure since the loose fibers can clog and damage your machine.
Like any other approaches to traditional knitting, you would follow the necessary instructions indicated on the pattern and place the finished product again to the felting process. However one important factor that you have to keep in mind is the fact that felting basically shrinks the size of the product so you should knit a slightly larger design to be able to get the expected size. The general rule of the thumb here is to use 2-3 sizes or larger needles than the suggested gauge. Since all yarns tend to felt quite differently from another, it’s a sensible idea to test a swatch to check for its effect so you can more or lese anticipate its appearance in a larger project. If you have a smaller piece to felt, you can throw in a pair of denims to help in the agitation process.
So know that you have the basics on felted knitting technique, you can look forward to more unique creations that can definitely enhance your knitting experience.