In Which the Pirate Knits with the Machine.
I’ve wanted to knit Puppies since I got the knitting machine. Last year I bought four cones of laceweight yarn for it, and promised myself that I wouldn’t buy any more yarn until I’d knit the thing. So… I knit the thing.
First, I made a swatch and attempted to felt it (not entirely, just a little bit) in the washing machine. I have a front-loader, which makes it a little more tricky, but it seemed to work just fine! There’s still some stitch definition, but all the floats are stuck down, which is exactly what I was trying to achieve.
And then I got started knitting it on the machine.
The wrap is knitted in three sections – first the two outside strips, and then the centre strip connects them as it’s knit up. I knit strip one, and then failed to properly upload strip three to the machine… so I knit strip one twice. (Sigh.) After some time and troubleshooting, I figured it out, and knit strip three, followed by the centre piece. Each of the sides took just under an hour, including the time to upload the pattern into the machine… and the centre took more like four or five hours, because of having to hook the sides up as I went. Michael helped me arrange the side strips so that I wouldn’t be hooking them up backwards or upside-down or anything silly like that – I am awful at the mental gymnastics of rotating pieces around in my head to get them aligned properly!
Here’s a closeup of a “puppy” (I think it looks more like a horse, but hey) with the fabric folded over to show the floats as well:
And then, with much trepidation, I tossed it into the washing machine. For the most part it fulled nicely… but there are some places that look a little holey, and I’m worried about those. I might try to spot-felt them, as well as the parts of the seam that just didn’t quite felt enough. That’ll be done by hand in a basin, rather than in the washing machine again.
Here you can see that part of the seam felted together just fine (circled in green) but part of it really didn’t (circled in orange):
I’m not super-happy with the results of this project, but it was definitely a Learning Experience with capital letters! I’ve gotten a bunch of advice on how I can better felt the thing next time, if there is a next time, including a method to keep the edges from rolling up and sticking to each other in the wash (ugh, I had to unroll/unstick them all, and bent back a fingernail in the process) and how to keep the edges from ruffling. I have a bit of the yarn left… which I might use held doubled to make some colourwork armwarmers. We shall see!