Blocking

Blocking is the process of using steam or water on a knitted fabric and then pinning into shape. It gives knitting a smooth, professional finish. Blocking also presents the opportunity to adjust the fabric to the desired dimensions.

I like to think of blocking in these terms: Would you want to wear a carefully pressed shirt or one that was rumpled in the dryer? Answer: There is nothing wrong with an unpressed shirt or unblocked knitted garment. However, an ironed shirt and a blocked knitted garment are infinitely more impressive. You spent countless hours knitting your work of art so take the extra time to give it the professional finish it deserves! As a bonus, blocking can smooth seams, adjust the size and erase irregularities.

Like mom always said, “A job worth doing is worth doing well.”

Watch this blocking demonstration and take your knitting to the next level.

 

21 thoughts on “Blocking

  1. Thanks for knitting Building Blocks with me! You should be able to slightly stretch your smaller blocks to measure approx. 13″. A little smaller than that is fine. The blocks will nestle in together and the slight size differences will disappear. I hope you will send me a photo of your finished blanket!

  2. I’ve finished the blocks for the Building Blocks and although I loved learning and practicing the new stitches, my tension was inconsistent and my ending squares are not the same size. Should I choose the largest one as a guide for my blocking frame? Even though your example is all scrunched, it still fits nicely into your 12 inch square. What would you do if you had a block that was 13 ” square?

  3. Thanks for knitting Building in Color with me! The Intarsia panel is worked in stockinette and the edges will curl no matter how much you block them. The good news is that it will lie perfectly flat once it is seamed. To wrangle the edges a bit until then, I suggest blocking and then rolling the panel up like a piece of sushi to help it retain the flat shape. Hope this helps!

  4. Hi! I’m blocking my first panel (Intarsia) of Building in Color. Because it is stitched in stockinette, the edges roll. How do you suggest keeping the edges flat while it dries?
    Thanks in advance.
    Caroline Green
    Minnesott Beach, NC

  5. Thanks for knitting Building in Color with me! I recommend putting a tablespoon of vinegar in the water to set the colors. Do not soak the piece for long. Just give it a quick dunk and then pin into place. Hope this helps!

  6. HI – I’ve just finished making the panels from your Building in Color book. I used ecru, red, and black yarn. What do you suggest putting in the water I used to wet the knitted panels to prevent the colors from running?
    Thanks – and I love the Building in Color project!

  7. Hi. Thank you for all your helpful videos on knitting and the ins and outs. I am just finishing the building blocks afghan and am at the blocking stage!! Yippee 🙂 Is the water supposed to be hot, warm or cold for when you are soaking the knitted block?

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  9. After washing your sweater you will want to smooth it into shape. Depending on your fiber content, the sweater may hold its shape fairly well and require minimal blocking. Often a gentle shot of steam is all that is needed. Hod your iron several inches above the the garment and allow the steam to penetrate the fibers (never iron your knitting) and use your fingers to smooth into shape.

  10. Am I correct in assuming that items that need blocking will need to be blocked every time the items is washed? In other words, if I make a sweater and block it, then every time it needs to be washed, it will have to be blocked afterwards?

  11. I did not use blocking wires for the KAL shawlette. I just smoothed out the picots and used a few pins on the garter stitch slip stitch area. It was really a no fuss thing.

  12. I’m sorry that I do not have a video on double points. I prefer to use the magic loop instead of double pointed needles (see “Magic Loop” video), but I’m not sure this would help you in this instance. What are you working on? Maybe I can talk you through it or at least rescue you from the ledge!

  13. I am working on level one-certificate of excellence with the Knitting Guild of America. I needed some good info on blocking. You helped alot. CAK

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