Wednesday, October 03, 2018

October 2018 - Unusual yarns

Events and updates

Fleet has a new artisan craft market every month. The 'Hart of Craft Artisan Market' takes place inside the Hart Shopping Centre, Fleet with 20 stalls. The person who previously ran the Internet Cafe in Farnham has a stall selling yarn. There is a Facebook page:

Following on from the charity knitting discussion last month, Liz now has copies of both hand and machine knitting instructions for making ventilator caps for babies. Please contact Liz is you would like to see the patterns. Black Sheep Wools also has a PDF for a hand knit pattern.

Sally has arranged a visit to view Joyce Meader's collection of knitted garments and items, and extensive pattern collection on Saturday 27th October. Spaces are limited. Please contact Sally if you are interested.

Unusual Yarns

Banana yarn (heavy, solid)
 Rowan river tape (light, crunchy)
 Baby alpaca and silk (light, soft, expensive)
 Royal alpaca, cashmere, silk (light, very soft, warm, very expensive)

 70% angora, 20% nylon, 10% wool (warm, can shed when warm but less so when cold)

 100% manila hemp (paper yarn)

 Latex effect, 65% polyurethane, 35% polyester

 100% Ramie (nettle fibre)

 Grilon K-85 (thermoformable yarn) 840 dtex

 Daytona 100% polypropylene

 Kevlar (para-aramid)

 62% wool, 38% copper

62% Glass beads, 21% polyester, 7% resin, 6% aluminium, 4% nylon (fabulous sheen under torch light)

Solvron (dissolves in water at 30-50C)

 80% cashmere, 20% silk
 50% silk, 50% acrylic
 Shantung: 40% lambswool, 40% cotton, 20% silk

Show and Tell

There are a lots of WIPs at the moment, but fewer finished objects this month. Both Sally and Liz had finished items that had been started whilst demonstrating knitting machines at the Southern Wool Show in Newbury last month.

Liz machine-knit a peach top using in-hold shaping.
Hand-knit turban

Sally machine-knit a kimono-inspired cardigan, that also used in-hold shaping.

Thursday, September 27, 2018

October - yarns

At our October meeting (Tuesday 2nd October) we will be playing with yarns and have got some really unusual ones! Paper, Latex effect, Kevlar, Grillon, Copper and Wool, and Ramie (nettles) to name but a few! We've found over 25 different ones amongst our stash not including acrylic!  We'll be exploring the possibility of knitting them by hand and by machine.

We'll also be having show and tell of our recently finished projects and maybe if there is time we'll also be making a bit of progress on our work in hand.

Please join us for the evening.  The times and address of where we meet is at the top of the page.

Sunday, September 09, 2018

September 2018 - AGM and charity discussion

Beginning of a new club year, and sticking with tradition, with started with the AGM and paying subs for the year. There has been a small increase in venue cost with the move last year, but this has been offset by the lack of available speakers, so the subs have stayed the same at £15 for the year, or £3 per evening for those who can only occasionally attend.


The AGM section was dealt with swiftly. There was discussion on changes to the committee and the requirement for a new treasurer. It was decided to continue supporting the Royal Marsden charity, but also to discuss other charities in the local area to also support (further discussion on this took place after the AGM section). There was also lively discussion on plans for the Xmas meeting and appropriate celebrations.


There are a lot of national and local charities that put out requests for knitted items. Over recent years the requirements have been getting increasingly specific, which is putting some people off. As the roots of the club are with Machine Knitting, the increase in requests for items that are specifically hand-knitted has frustrated many. Here are some of the charities and requests that we discussed:

UK Hand Knitting Association - Commit to Knit month (June)
Knit for nowt - Therapy hand puppets and worry monsters
Knitted octopus for preemie babies
Emily's Gift neonatal boxes - including bonding squares
Royal Navy and Royal Marines RNRMCF - knitted family toys for military families
Knit for Peace
The Donkey Sanctuary - knit a donkey toy for the charity to sell in their shop
Twiddlemuffs for Hampshire hospitals
Comfort blankets for Surrey hospitals
Royal Surrey - knitted hats for babies

Show and Tell

Julie knit a snuggly adult green cardigan with colourful buttons.

Sandra had knit two preemie baby cardigans and a hat for charity.

Nina machine-knit a 4-ply Branwell Savannah Cotton top with shaped neck and picot edge. Was a labour of love, as Nina's knitting machine was being a little grumpy working with the Savannah cotton.

A hand-knit garter stitch scarf looked warm, and kicked on a discussion on different ways to wear such a scarf, including the use of a strategic feature button or brooch.

Two colourful and super-soft crocheted knee blankets intended as comfort blankets for hospital to keep patients comfortable whilst in waiting areas.

Stash-busting 'odds and ends' striped top with cut-and-sew neckline.

Pink, yellow and green tops for children.

Annette won first place in a WI competition with a crocheted sheep. There was also a friendly frog made from a free knitting pattern that was being given out from a stand at the Ally Pally knitting show

Sunday, September 02, 2018

September meeting

Summer is now officially over and it's now Autumn (according to the meteorological calendar).  All the children have gone back to school and it's time for our knitting club to start meeting again.  

Our next meeting is on Tuesday 4th September at 8pm.  Don't forget it will be at the new venue: Room L1, Library Block, Court Moor School, Fleet.

It's the AGM (which takes all of 15 minutes!) and we will also have as a topic for discussion "What can we knit and which charity can we give it to?"  If you've got any ideas and suggestions we'd love to hear them.  You're welcome to bring your work in progress with you and to do a bit of knitting or crochet whilst we discuss. Also bring along any completed items to show.

I look forward to seeing you.

Saturday, July 07, 2018

July 2018 - Charity knitting or finishing WIPs

It was a very warm evening for the last meeting of the 2017-18 club calendar. Not surprisingly, several members are on holiday at this time of year, so there was a slightly smaller turn-out than usual. There was lively discussion of the Guild of Machine Knitters AGM last month, with particular enthusiasm for Nick of Uppingham Yarns talk on the huge range of yarns currently available, and the speech by the Guild founder Frank Dineen on his recollections of the early years of the Guild.

Fleet club had a stand in the foyer of the venue displaying items created by members, and kindly laid out by Jean.
Fleet Knitting Club stand at the Guild of Machine Knitters AGM, 2018
There was also discussion of a beautifully crafted sideways-knit skirt that was seen being proudly worn at the AGM, which led into comparisons of the different techniques to achieve the pleating, including the heat-set 'boil-in-the-bag' technique.

There was a 3-for-2 offer on in Lidl's for a cotton/acrylic yarn, which may still be available in some branches (depending on stock).

There is no August meeting. The next meeting will be Tuesday 4th September, 2018.

Upcoming shows

The Southern Wool Show will be held at the Newbury Racecourse on Saturday 1st September.

Charity knits

Liz brought along some charity knit patterns, as well as some of the latest crazes on the internet, including knitting finger rings, 'Flashdance' chair socks, catnip bunny toys, water bottle holders, and an aquatic trend that included fish and octopus.

Show and tell

Jean machine-knit a child's orange jacket with lace edging.

Sandra hand-knit a white garter-stitch baby cardigan to donate to the Sands Charity. A matching hat is on the needles.

Carol's pink lacy cardigan is a present for a neighbour's 70th birthday.

Liz hand-knit two pairs of socks. The blue/green pair have the 'after-thought spiral heel'.

Hand-knit wrap-around scarf for a baby in an Aran-look yarn.

A hand-knit four colour cotton yarn bag with i-cord handles.

Carol also brought along some new Addi needles for sock knitting that look very interesting. They have the name addiCraSyTrio.