Yarny Wonders -and then some!

Adventures at the Work Table

June 17, 2010

Ye Olde Knitting Tools

I've heard other knitters talking about muscle sprains and other aches that effect their knitting, but until recently, have never had that happen to me.
Last week I did end up hurting something around my lower thumb area that stretched into my wrist. How I did it I have no idea. It did make knitting uncomfortable so I had to put the pins down for a few days.
This misforture did, however, get me interested in some of the old-time knitting implements of days gone by, when hand-knitting was a commercial industry, and speed and keeping your hands and wrists in good shape a vital part of a paid job.
So I started looking into it, and I found this blog: A Fisherman Knits
Look in particular at the posts on knitting belts and knitting sheaths, and his thoughts on pit knitting vs. knitting with a belt or sheath that you can find here. Very interesting reading! I also like his idea for a clew.
Knitting's past propensity towards very small circumferenced needles makes sense when it is understood that "dense" knitting is much warmer to the wearer than knitting that creates any kind of hole for air/heat transfer. It makes sense! Honestly, I had to wonder when I first started looking at historical knitting if it was just designed to be as labor-intensive as possible, or with some sort of masochistic tendency to knit as painfully as possible. I realize by not grasping the obvious right off the bat, that I am a thoroughly modern knitter with a modern knitter's skew. Knitting for warmth has never really been my first priority, not really - not like our knitting ancestors did. I have never thought to knit a sweater that could be worn by itself, and keep me warm without any other type of outer garment through rain or snow. This is what those tiny steel pins were made to do, take wool and turn it into a very, VERY, functional garment.

No comments:


This blog is mainly to document my journey in Work: Knitting, Crochet and learning to do things such as Tatting, Netting, Drawn Thread Work and Sewing. Plus anything cool I find along the way :)
Lately, I have become really interested in 19th century fashion! But I also have a huge interest in expanding my skills with the goal that eventually, I will be able to make my clothes. I love to wear Salwar Kameez, but I want to be able to design and make my own, especially outfits in fabrics that are suited to colder weather since I live in upstate NY!