Why/How do you block

I’m a little ashamed to admit this, but in 10 years of knitting I have never blocked anything. :aww:

I am about to finish a malabrigo wool baby blanket and I’m thinking maybe I should find out what this whole blocking thing is all about.

Anyone want to explain why you do it and how you do it?

E

Here is a great article on blocking. http://www.knitty.com/issuewinter02/FEATdiyknitter.html

I’ve only blocked so far on lace items, it really opens up the pattern so everything isn’t squished and you can see the pretty pattern. It also helped make a lace scard I knitted longer. People also block things like sweaters so they will fit a certain way. Basically its just wetting the item and pulling it into shape, usually pinning it that way until it dries. That is a really good article though, you should take a look.

Heh, in over 40 years of knitting (okay, I didn’t knit for about 10-12 years…) I’ve never blocked anything. I have a couple wool scarves I do need to get around to doing before it gets cold so I can wear them. One is entrelac, the other lacy, so they do need it. I did some others in rib patterns so they don’t need it.

I block. Even acrylics. Know why?

  1. It freshens the yarns.
  2. It “sets” the stitches. They always look more professional and perfect after blocking.
  3. It does aid “shaping” the pieces to correct size.

This little set was knit using pima cotton. Before blocking, the stitches were all catty-wampus. After blocking, the stocking stitches looked perfect! (well, perfect enough anyway). I washed them in a cold water wash for fine knits. Pinned them out on the blocking board on terry towels til bone dry. I stuffed the hat with terry washcloths to keep its shape.

For acrylic yarn, washing and drying (in the dryer or not, if you want) evens out the stitches. Whatever shaping you do with it doesn’t hold like it does with wool.

If you look at a lace project, you’ll really be able to see the difference bocking makes. Here, take a look at these 2 old blog posts of mine.

Before blocking:

and after blocking:

Blocking helps things look MUCH better, and if you happen to knit something a bit small, you can most likely block it to be bigger. I have a tendency to do that with scarves.

Thank you for that link; that was incredibly helpful.

I finished a lace shawl done in baby alpaca and I didn’t know if I needed to wet-block or pin/spritz. Thanks to that link, I now know!

ArtLady,

Those outfits are TOO FRIGGIN’ ADORABLE!!! OMG! I LOVE THEM!:inlove::inlove::inlove:

You did a glorious job! OMG! Did I mention that I LOVE those? WTG!