Knitting traditions

So I got this in the mail yesterday. Oooooooooooooo.

It’s a special-edition magazine published by Interweave Press that reprints a whole bunch of great articles about historical knitting techniques and patterns.

The first thing you notice when you flip through this magazine — other than how beautiful the projects are — is how small a gauge people used to work in back in the day. Knitters a century or two ago wouldn’t have batted an eye at 12 stitches to the inch. I start to hyperventilate anywhere below 8.

The main reason I’m excited about this showing up, though, is that I’m hoping to teach a course this summer on historic knitting techniques. Not at my college, but at a fiber retreat in Maine. I had the idea that it would be cool to teach a class in which the students practice different historical knitting techniques on a single project (probably a hat).

Since one of my own students taught me naal-binding (a one-needle sewing technique that predates knitting), I’ll probably start there. I also had the joy of learning twined knitting from the master (Beth Brown-Reinsel), so that will feature in the class, too.

What’s your favorite historical knitting technique — of if you could learn one of these techniques, what would it be?

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