Tips and Techniques
Welcome to the Fiddlesticks Knitting Tips and Techniques page! Here you'll find pdfs with some of the special techniques used in Fiddlesticks Knitting patterns, information relating to lace knitting, and any other tidbits I think would be of interest.
Read the pdf online or download and print it. Share it with your friends! If reproducing any of the content, please credit Dorothy Siemens of Fiddlesticks Knitting. Thanks!
Blocking a Shawl with Pins
There are many ways to block or “dress” a lace shawl to bring it to its full glory. This pdf describes how I like to block a shawl using only pins (blocking with wires is described in the pdf below). I’m using my Paisley Swirl as an example, so download or open the pdf to see how I do it. This method is the one I use for circular or odd-shaped shawls that don't have straight edges for wires.
Blocking a Shawl with Pins (pdf requires Acrobat Reader)
Blocking a Shawl (or scarf) with Wires
There are many ways to block or “dress” a lace shawl to bring it to its full glory. This pdf describes how I like to block a scarf or shawl using only wires (blocking with pins only is described in the pdf above). I’m using my Winter Scarf from the Four Seasons Scarves as an example, so download or open the pdf to see how I do it. This method is the one I use for any scarf or shawl with straight edges.
Blocking a Shawl with Wires (pdf requires Acrobat Reader)
I sometimes find that a simple crochet edging is all that is needed to perfectly finish and complement a garment edge. It can also be used as a decorative and stretchy cast off for a shawl edge. In both cases, it’s actually very easy and quite quick to work (another reason I like it!). Here are instructions for knitters who don’t know how to crochet:
Crochet Edgings (pdf requires Acrobat Reader)
How to Knit Nupps
Those lovely bobbles or “nupps” in Estonian lace knitting can be daunting to work if you’ve never done them before. Here I’ll show you how it’s done. These instruction show how to create a nupp with seven stitches, but depending on the yarn choice and pattern directions, it could be more or fewer stitches.
How to Knit Nupps (pdf requires Acrobat Reader)
Lace Knitting Charts
For those of you who are new to knitting from charts, or want to pick up a few extra pointers, this five-page pdf explains how charts work, from the simplest one-liner to more complex versions. Don't let fear of charts hold you back from knitting those complex designs—once you understand the basics, you'll see why more and more people prefer knitting from charts. There are also tips on making chart reading easier.
Lace Knitting Charts (pdf requires Acrobat Reader)
I love the ease and speed of joining two pieces of identical knitting with Russian Grafting. It makes a smoother seam at the join than 3-needle bind off and is easier to do than Kitchener Stitch Grafting. Read more about it here:
Russian Grafting (pdf requires Acrobat Reader)