Friday, June 29, 2007

Newbie question

Hi there
I have not knit lace before and I am a newbie spinner.
I have finished spinning one batt of my Shetland and am trying to figure something out.
Can I knit with my singles?? I know that you can, but in some cases the yarn will twist creating a visible line--but I don't' think I can spin it thin enough to create a 2 ply laceweight yarn.



Kirsten said...

I would knit a swatch and see how the yarn behaves. If you don't like it you can always make the yarn 2-ply and knit your lace with the heavier yarn. I have seen some beautiful shawls made with yarn as heavy as worsted.

dorothy in wyoming said...

Not all patterns require lace weight yarns ;) In fact some of the prettiest call for fingering or even heavier weight yarn. Many Fiber Trend patterns actually list yardage for lace weight through worsted weight.

Jane said...

I agree that a swatch would help you decide if you like knitting with a single. I would also tell you to block that swatch to see how it would end up holding it's shape. I agree that you could always make it a two ply and knit lace with it. It would be lovely in fact and it does not have to be thin to make a beautiful shawl. If you do decide to knit with it as a single and you wind it into a ball, I would suggest knitting from the outside of the ball rather than the center. Though knitting from the outside will add still more twist, knitting from the center may end up a tangled mess. Good Luck!

Tracy said...

There is no "law" that says you need to knit lace with lace-weight yarn. Also, there is no rule that says a shawl must be lace. There are many beautiful non-lace shawls knit with heavier yarn. Just sample and see what you like and have fun with it.

Duchess said...

Two thoughts

I am currently knitting my shawl with a 2 ply yarn that measures at 19 WPI, which, technically is lace weight, but with it's bloom it is more like a tad finer fingering weight. I am knitting the Swallowtail shawl and went up a needle size. It's going to give me a bigger and more substantial looking shawl. I am very pleased with it. I don't have a lace flyer and ther will be none of this 30 WPI coming off of my wheel, and that's good with me!
As far as knitting with singles, of course swatch, but you can also set singles in such a way that they won't bias on you. It's kind of a pain in the butt (or at least it was for me) but I did it with so me Wensleydale singles that I loved un-plyed and it worked great. It does take most of the "sproing" out of the yarn, though.

Ann-Marie said...

thanks everyone.
i think i just freaked out that i may not have enough batts to make a full shawl--but i'm going to just start--swatch and play around and see what i can do!

Kristine said...

You can absolutely knit with singles. I have knit with singles many times on many different projects and have never been left with an unintended slant. The trick is to take the extra "energy" out of the single by setting the twist with warm water.

Take your yarn off of the bobbin, make it into a skein, tie the skein in three places so that it does not get tangled, fill a bucket with hot bath water and a drop of mild detergent. Lie the skein on the hot water, as the yarn fills with water it will slowly bring intself into the bucket of water. Allow the yarn to beomce fully submerged and soak for approx 20 minutes. take the yarn our of the water, give it a flat hand press to release extra water. Do not wring. Hang to dry. You always have the extra option of weighting the skein but that makes a fairly rigid yarn and tends to pull alot of the "air" or "fluffiness" out of the yarn.

I really love the organic nature of handspun singles albeight it is a very different look than the highly finished 2 ply lace weight yarn some of our fellow spinners/ knitters are making.

For my project, I have spun a single polwarth yarn. Because it is a single, and spun intentionally irregular, I am in the process of finding a pattern that lends to that feeling. I am thinking of patterns that remind me of the ocean.

I am looking forward to seeing what you end up deciding!