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Topic: Blocking and curling  (Read 425 times)
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« on: February 27, 2011 08:40:28 AM »

So, I have been working on this scarf, which is coming out perfectly, except for the fact that it's curling on the sides. Ugh. I haven't had this problem before and I don't know what to do! Is it because I'm knitting too tightly? Is there a way to fix this without undoing everything?

Somewhat pertaining to that, I'm wondering if anyone can tell me a little bit about blocking? I'm not really sure why people do it, what it does, or how to do it. Would blocking this scarf that I'm working on stop it from curling?

« Reply #1 on: February 27, 2011 01:35:06 PM »

It depends on what fiber and what stitches you're using. All stockinette is going to curl up, period. It needs a few sts at the beg and end of the rows in garter, seed or ribbing to counteract that. It may curl or flip up a little then, but blocking may help.

Blocking can be just washing and drying an item to even out the sts, or you can wet it and pin it into shape or to flatten it out. Lace things are usually stretched out a lot then pinned to open up the sts and pattern. This is easier with a a wool or a blend that has a lot of wool in it. Acrylic needs to be steamed to be blocked, but you have to be careful not to get it too hot or it melts; and oversteaming will make the item limp and drapey which is fine for lace, but wouldn't be what you want in a cabled sweater.

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« Reply #2 on: February 28, 2011 11:57:35 AM »

Some people only block lace, but I block pretty much everything I knit! It really helps to even out my stitches and make things easier for finishing (seaming, pickingg up edges, etc).  I mostly utilize wet blocking, although I've used steam blocking before and the washing machine/dryer blocking method for pure/mostly acrylic yarns.

If blocking doesn't help the curl, you can always add on a crocheted or knitted edging to help, but in the future add on those garter/ribbed/seed stitch edges, like soozeq said, if you're doing a mostly stockinette scarf.
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