Blocking must haves! what is on your list?

i want to get supplies to use specifically for blocking, because my method in the past was to handwash, then lay out to dry on a drying rack or a couch cushion covered with a garbage bag… i just don’t think that will cut it.
so what should i get? i want to make sure i get the right stuff…

what are your favorite pins?
what is your favorite blocking platform?
do you use a blocking mat?
do you modify it at all (ie cover in plastic, put fan on it)?
where did you buy these supplies?

i’m looking forward to the answers, too. great question! our methods are very similar at the moment. :wink:

I think blocking mats are overrated. I use towels on the carpet and stainless steel T pins. That’s all. I don’t use fans, plastic, anything. Just throw a towel down (or more than one), and pin straight into the carpet. (I only pin things when the sizing is really important, or with lace.)

I do exactly what Silver does, but I use blocking wires for lace knitting to stretch it out. It’s as simple as that.

I use an old blanket because I generally need to place on the floor and I will double or triple this and then lay a large towel or two on top.

I must say the pins with the round tops (I know they have a name)…the round ball like coloured tops…I’ve found very good because they are easy to see/spot and to grip. They often tend to be a tad longer than ordinary pins and sometimes I’ve found that useful.

I usually just block my lace on the bed over clean towels.

These however are my favorite blocking pins, my lace yarn can’t “pop” itself over the pinhead when I’m not looking.

I too use the blocking wires - for everything not just for lace. I got my set from Knit Picks and love them.

I do have a blocking board but I don’t always use it. I do find it very helpful when I’m trying to block something to an exact size as it has a grid on it.

I have the blocking pins that have the yellow flower pins on them (I think you can get them from Knit Picks). I don’t like them much - maybe I’m a little rough on them but I bend quite a few of them, regardless if I’m going into the blocking board or into the carpet & towels. I need to find a heavy-duty non rusting ping!

Ok, maybe I should pick up a set of blocking wires too… :smiley:

I use T-pins and this gridded board:

It’s great, I love it. It’s cardboard and very light weight. It folds up nice and compact to put away, and folds out to over 6 feet long if I want. It’s gridded in inches and has centimeter markings as well, includes some arcs for lace/shawl knitting too.

I wrapped the entire thing in a solid layer of Saran Wrap so the cardboard doesn’t get soggy. I bought it at my LYS for less than $15, I think it was technically labeled as a sewing/cutting board.

ETA–I totally covet the KP lace blocking wires though, definitely on my hit list

Oh…HammaLee what a FABULOUS use for the sewing/cutting mat! I got mine at Hancock Fabrics for $15 and I know that Joann’s has them too! The saran is a great idea. Whenever I make a scarf my blocking board is NEVER long enough but that cutting mat would be [I]perfect[/I]! :woot: Thanks for such a great idea! :thumbsup:

My favorite blocking surface is a slab of styrofoam that I picked up at the hardware store a few dollars. It really holds the pins well and it is perfectly flat which is important for me because I do a lot of lace knitting and lace needs to be stretched evenly on a flat surface to come out looking its best.

I have two pieces that are 6ft x 3ft and about an inch thick. I can put them together to make a square. When not in use you can store them in a closet or slide them under a bed.

I bought the blocking wires from KP recently when i had a lace scarf i wanted to block perdy. The first package arrived with the tube crushed by UPS, the ruler inside broken, and most of the wires bent. I called KP and they immediately sent out another and didn’t ask for the first one back. woo hoo!

The wires worked great:

(yes i fixed the wonky spot!)

I laid that out on my bed at the hotel where i was staying. I have that same board pictured up there from Hancock too and would have used that if i had been home.

I also use the cutting board (without the plastic wrap, but GREAT idea!) and a spray bottle. I find soaking the whole thing in a water bath gets it too soggy for most items, so I use an old (very clean) windex bottle with filtered water and spray, spray, spray!