Lace Knitting and Knitting Lace

Shawl for Vogue Knitting Spring 2012 - Combines elements of Lace Knitting and Knitted lace.

Shawl for Vogue Knitting Spring 2012 – Combines elements of Lace Knitting and Knitted lace.

I have been knitting lace and painting lace for a number of years;  but I have never really talked about lace in the blog.

Lace – According to Wikepedia

Lace is an openwork fabric, patterned with open holes in the work, made by machine or by hand.[1] The holes can be formed via removal of threads or cloth from a previously woven fabric, but more often open spaces are created as part of the lace fabric. Lace-making is an ancient craft. True lace was not made until the late 15th and early 16th centuries. A true lace is created when a thread is looped, twisted or braided to other threads independently from a backing fabric.

Originally linen, silk, gold, or silver threads were used. Now lace is often made with cotton thread, although linen and silk threads are still available. Manufactured lace may be made of synthetic fiber. A few modern artists make lace with a fine copper or silver wire instead of thread.

Knitting where there is more fabric than holes is often called eyelet knitting.  Knitting where there is more holes than fabric is called lace knitting.

Shetland Sampler Square after painting with dyes

Shetland Sampler Square after painting with dyes, note the double faggotting insert as part of the edging.

I am working on a couple of Shetland Lace shawl patterns; both are squares, and one is almost ready for release! I decided that it was time to expand and expound on the topic of lace, one of the beautiful styles of knitting that works right in with my love of beads and painting with dyes!  There are two categories of lace work in knitting, one is lace knitting and the other is knitting lace.

What is the difference between lace knitting and knitting lace?

At its most simple – lace knitting has a plain row, either knit or purl, between every row with the YO’s.  Knitted lace has YO’s worked on every row.  Most patterns for knitters are lace knitting, though there are some patterns out there that combine elements of both in the piece to be knit.  How do you tell the difference between the two styles when looking? Knitted lace with patterning on both sides will have single strands of yarn across the openings in the fabric; lace knitting with patterning on only one side (wrong side rows knit or purled), the strands of yarn will be twisted so that there are two strands crossing the openings in the fabric.

Every knitted lace pattern can be changed to lace knitting with the addition of the plain row – every one that I have tried so far – though not every lace knitting pattern translates back into knitted lace.

Faggotting combined with garter edges to keep it stable.  Amazingly large given that it only took about 325 meters.

Faggotting combined with garter edges to keep it stable. Amazingly large given that it only took about 325 meters.

Knitting lace is usually more difficult than lace knitting, simply because it is more difficult to work every row in pattern and to track those patterns.  If a mistake is made, or a stitch is dropped it can be much more difficult to fix!

There are several “Styles” of lace knitting that have captured knitters imaginations over the last few years, Shetland Lace, Orenburg Lace and Estonian Lace.  I will continue to expand on each style as a separate page.

Sheltand Lace Sampler unpainted.

Sheltand Lace Sampler unpainted.

Shetland lace will be next as it has been my first love in lace; and I still have much more to learn about the other styles of lace knitting.

4 Responses to Lace Knitting and Knitting Lace

  1. Zaelia Blue says:

    I’m a yearling knitter, and I did not know about eyelet knitting, lace knitting and knitting lace. Great article, and I look forward to exploring the topic more. Thanks. Happy New Year!

  2. Weezy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! says:

    Regarding your request for today, I don’t have a horse but I sure do wish I had one, I love carrots and apples too. I love all of your designs and appreciate all that you share with us. We are so fortunate to have someone as talented as yourself. My next venture is the knitting with lace and lace knitting. Can’t wait.

    Love and sunshine:


    • Wow! Thank-you Weezy for the love and sunshine that you are sending my way! It is greatly appreciated.

      Lace knitting and knitting lace have absorbed me for a long time now and they never get old – enjoy your venture.

      Happy Knitting


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