Beginner’s please

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I’ve managed to get started and thought I was going great guns, but when I get to row 18 or 19 and whilst taking the carriage back from left to right, it’s taking the stitches off! Why? Please help me as I’m getting so frustrated! Thanks so much in anticipation. Kind regards, Angie Cliffe

Your enthusiasm is probably running away with you, Angie. The first two things that spring to mind are that you don’t have the correct tension on the yarn, so it’s forming loops at the edge of the knitting. This is probably the most common cause of dropped stitches. The second thought is that the carriage needs to clear the knitting completely before you push it across for the next row. Make sure it clears the last working needle by about 2 to 3 cm. You know when this has happened, because you’ll hear a faint ‘click’. If you go to the other extreme and take the carriage too far over, more yarn than required will come through the yarn brake. Again, this destroys the yarn tension and can cause loops and dropped stitches at the edge of the work. You may well find that the solution to your problem is simply to slow down!

Fallen Angel

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It is on Page 27 and the recommended yarns are Yeoman Supersheen and Yeoman Cannele Fine Crêpe. I cannot find Yeoman Cannele Fine Crêpe anywhere. Is this the correct name of the yarn or do you know which yarn I could substitute? Best regards, Maryse Ellensburg from Amsterdam

We definitely hit the spot with our Angel Falls design on Page 27 of the April issue, Maryse. How did we know? Both the office and Yeoman’s phone lines rang non stop with knitters wondering which yarn to use. We spoke to the designer and are confident that you need two ends of Yeoman Fine Crêpe and one end of Yeoman Supersheen to knit this popular design.

Look At Life

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Joan taught me machine knitting at evening classes over 25 years ago and was involved with the local machine-knitting club until she moved to the southwest. She was always full of tales at club meetings and when I used to buy MKM, her article was usually the first one I read. She has such an easy writing style and the content is always interesting or amusing, or both. I still meet up regularly each month with two friends I made at Joan’s evening classes, although both of them have given up knitting over the years.

I’m busy clearing my workshop so I can get to my trusty old Brother 836 machine and discovering patterns and books, I’d long forgotten. I’ve a stack of your magazines starting from the 80s, so I’ve plenty of reading to do and I look forward to starting on the machine very soon, especially on cold wet days! After all these years it’s good to see that MKM still has plenty of variety and is a good ‘read’. I look forward to the next issues that I will be purchasing. With kind regards, Jean Cox

Take your pick

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Could I pass on that I’ve found this really useful tool for designing knitwear and thought you might like to include it in the next issue. It’s an online tool for picking colours and seeing what they will look like in a stripe pattern. It really is great! www.biscuitsandjam.com/stripe_maker.php Kind regards, Jayne Edwards

Crafter’s Market

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This will be my fourth year and we now get holidaymakers coming over specially to see us. I’ve sold over 25 chunky ponchos and still have a stock of ten left, which I’m hoping will sell next year. I’ve also designed a jumper, which is easy to knit and has many variations of patterns. So far, I’ve sold at least 30 of them with about six now left in stock. They’re very quick and easy to knit, so I’ll send you the pattern when I’ve a spare minute. I’m sure readers will be interested in the pattern. I got a lot of pleasure out of knitting it because it gave me the opportunity to try out different punchcards.

I tell all the visitors to the stall about Machine Knitting Monthly, when they ask how I manage to knit so many things in such a short space of time. It’s hard to believe but, in 12 months, I’ve knitted 216 items including jumpers, cardigans, ponchos, scarves, mobile phone and kindle pouches. My friend Ann and I have also knitted lovely evening shrugs by hand whilst sitting in the Gazebo, so we never stop.

At present I’m writing the pattern for a scarf, which I’ve aptly named ‘Keyhole’ because of its shape. A friend of mine was knitting a much smaller version on fine needles from a pattern, which, I believe, came from America. I decided to incorporate my own version and do a chunky one, which has enabled me to use up lots of my little spare bits of yarn too. So far, I’ve knitted 12 for my Crafter Market in the Spring. I’ll send the pattern as well and, in the meantime, here are a couple of photos of the chunky version. The scarf can also be adapted for the standard gauge machine as a smaller version, but obviously more rows will need to be knitted. However, it’s easy enough to work out the desired size.

Over the years I’ve acquired lots of unwanted knitting machines and just recently I’ve been selling some of them which, in turn, gives me some spending money for more wool! Best wishes to you all and I’ll write the patterns as soon as I can. Kindest regards, Linda Collins

Giving the machine needles a bath!

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Hi Anne, Just like to say thanks to the people who responded to my queries about the garter carriage, and also to ask those of us who hoard old magazines if they can help me.

Many years ago (wouldn’t like to say how many) I remember reading an article in a machine knitting magazine by one of the regular contributors (it may even have been our own Joan Lafferty) about giving your knitting machine a jolly good spring clean. In it she described taking out all the needles and giving them a bath in some sort of spirit to get rid of all the hard accumulated oil.

I returned from Bournemouth (jolly good time had by both me and my husband – really enjoyed it) fired by the need to get my knitting room (the loft) sorted out and one machine put away and the other one thoroughly cleaned. I looked for the above article but couldn’t find it and came to the conclusion that in my last turn-out I must have chucked it.

My query is does anyone remember that article and who it was by? It went into cleaning in some depth – much more than your usual thorough clean.

I found some American demonstrations on YouTube, but the things they did to their machines seem a bit scary to me. I’d be bound to lose things!

Can anyone help?

Mary L

Help! My KH190 has broken down.

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I have a Brother Electro knit KH190 but the pattern cards slip and it is getting worse. I have taken the unit out and cleaned it but the problem is no better. I can not find anyone local who can fix my problem so I am hoping someone out there can either sell me another part or suggest how I might be able to fix it my self.
By the way, I love your mag and dive in to it as soon as it drops through my letterbox. I go straight to the patterns to see if there are any I would like to try. Pity there are not more bigger sizes though.