Thursday, February 13, 2014

Swaving again, and what it looks like

Swaved fabric looks like knit fabric - because it is knit fabric. 

Fabric that is swaved has a 'row out' horizontal rib on the purled side when knit back and forth as the yarn tension is controlled by spring of the fabric, and knit fabric has different spring on the knit and purl sides. Fabric swaved in the round tends to be more consistent than fabric knit with hand held needles. Thus, the tension of swaved socks and gloves is excellent.

As for what swaving looks like as an activity, both the knitting sheath and swaving pricks (needles) are small and not likely to be noticed. The knitting sheath holds the right prick on a fixed axis, and that prick rotates on the axis of the knitting sheath. 

The prick is bent so that one end is ~20 mm off the axis.   Length from the bend in the prick  to the tip of the prick is  about 3 cm. In use, the tip of the prick moves in an arc about 4 times the diameter of the prick in length. Thus, the tip of the 2 mm prick I am using at this time only moves about 8 mm, while the left prick moves much less.  Thus, all motions are very small.

If the yarn is held in the left hand, then all an observer sees is a small rapid downward-inward  push and return with both hands that is repeated with each stitch.

If the yarn is held in the right, then what is seen is a small motion as the right hand moves a few mm forward to loop yarn over the tip of the prick after the downward- inward push and before the return.  This motion is larger than if the yarn is held with the left hand.  

Swaving just looks like very discrete knitting. However, it produces a characteristic soft "popping" sound with each stitch. If  I am using a Yorkshire goosewing knitting sheath, it is done right in the lap, with my hands over the needles.  The needles are ~6" so the tips of the needles are are visible,   People often notice and comment when I am knitting in public. Very few people comment when I am swaving in public. 


=Tamar said...

Discreet indeed, except for the popping. Has anyone ever complained about the noise?

Aaron said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Aaron said...

Not sure anyone hears it, nobody has ever said anything.

"Pops" maybe more of a sensation to the knitter, than a sound.