FO Friday – Machine Hat

You all know I have turned traitor and bought a knitting machine….well, here is my first machine hat!

When I say ‘turned traitor’ I know there are some friends who read the blog who may not know what that means. Basically, there is a bit of a ‘thing’ between hand-knitters and machine-knitters, where using a machine is supposedly cheating. I got into quite the discussion about this at my knit and natter group the other week, which was not that enjoyable.

Knitting Machine attached to the counter.

Let me get it straight. I love hand-knitting. I adore it. It’s my passion. But, I’ve always wanted a knitting machine, and it is a totally different craft. It produces a knitted fabric, but has its own set of rules and quirks and patterns, so to my mind, it is not cheating. I love it.

Machine Hat

So, the pattern for the machine hat is Rainbow Hat with Cuff by Ginny Schweiss, which is a free pattern on Ravelry. I downloaded it and sat down thinking “this is going to be great, I’m going to make a hat in no time at all”. I had two half-balls of Regia 4-ply in Marrakech and Ombre stripe, so I used them up rather than following the rainbow theme in the pattern.

Beautiful machine hat, complete and ready for wearing.
Beautiful machine hat, complete and ready for wearing.

That was before I realised the different rules and abbreviations that I had to use to actually decipher the pattern in the first place. Before I knew that to knit on a knitting machine you have to hang weights off your knitting. (I used cups filled with about a pound of pennies each. Six of them.) Before I knew that using my vintage machine involves a LOT of physical exertion (think ironing with a really heavy iron).

Modelling the hat myself, looking a bit bohemian!
Modelling the hat myself, looking a bit bohemian!

Relative to using my needles, the hat was made up about an hour more quickly than it would have been otherwise. I spent a long time kneeling on the floor picking up dropped stitches with my arm twisted around the back of the knitting, which ended up in sore knees the following day.

A much better-looking model!
A much better-looking model!
Machine hat from the back.
Machine hat from the back.

My verdict is that machine knitting is a LOT harder than it looks, it will take some practice to stop dropping stitches, and I absolutely love the new toy and can’t stop thinking about when I’ll next be able to pick it up!

So…who has tried machine knitting here?

Much love,

Corrie xx

PS Head over to Facebook for the chance to win a £20 Amazon voucher! More details here.

FO Friday with Tami's Amis


« Previous
Next »
This entry was posted in Knitting, Machine Knitting and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to FO Friday – Machine Hat

  1. It’s lovely and the yarn is great! Did you watch the knitting programme on BBC4 the other night? They likened machine knitting to heavy ironing, which is enough to put me off it, but I don’t see why you can’t enjoy doing both in the same way I link spinning yarn and also buying it!

    Have a lovely weekend

    • Corrie Berry says:

      Yeah I did, I absolutely LOVED it. I actually watched it twice!!

      As much as machine knitting is hard…it’s nowhere near as hard as spinning! I’m taking my wheel to my local weaving shop next weekend to learn how to use it PROPERLY.

  2. Regula says:

    It looks beautiful! My mother had a knitting machine. I’ve never tried it out.

  3. I agree that using a knitting machine is a totally different skill set/craft. I’ve never used one and I wouldn’t know where to start. They look very complicated and watching them being set up on the tv the other night has me in awe of your hat!

  4. jane says:

    Don’t use so much weight! You need just enough to stop the stitches springing up off the needles, too much will strain the needles and definitely make the carriage very hard to push to form the new stitches! We use small claw weights that are about 4oz each, probably about 4 across a hat sized piece of knitting.

Leave a Reply to Regula Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published.