Recently, a friend who is new to knitting was excited to join some washcloths she knit. She wanted to create a baby blanket. I recommended that she block the wash cloths. Naturally, it was her first time hearing about blocking. After she did it, however, she was very pleased with the result. 8 neat, consistent knitted squares and rectangles that were ready to be stitched together to create a lovely blanket.
Blocking is a process in knitting or crochet where a finished piece of work is manipulated into its final shape and size. The purpose of blocking is to improve the appearance of the finished piece, create a more even stitch pattern, and to ensure that the final dimensions of the project are correct.
When a piece is blocked, it can be stretched, shaped, and pinned into place to help set the stitches in their final form. This can help to smooth out uneven stitches, open up lace patterns, and create a more polished and professional look.
There are several different methods for blocking. Our favorite for blocking mindfulknits cotton or acrylic yarn include:
- Wet blocking: Wet blocking involves soaking the finished item in water. Then, you gently squeeze out excess moisture, and shape it into the desired dimensions. This is the most common method of blocking and is suitable for most types of yarn. You’ll need a basin or sink, some wool wash or mild soap, and towels to absorb the excess water. Gently press the item into shape using pins on a foam board and allow it to dry completely before removing the pins.
- Steam blocking: To steam block, you’ll need a steaming iron, foam boards, and pins. Hold the iron close to the item and let the steam penetrate the fibers. Pin the item into place and let it cool & dry completely before removing the pins.
- Spray blocking: Spray blocking is a good option for acrylic or cotton yarn. To spray block, you’ll need a spray bottle filled with water and a surface that you can pin your item to. Spray the item with water until it’s damp. Then, shape it into the desired dimensions and pin it in place. Allow it to dry completely before removing the pins.
For any type of blocking, you’ll usually need the following items:
- Foam boards
- Steaming iron
- Spray Bottle
Besides the iron, which most people generally already own, you can find the remaining items at your local Daiso (best if you’re on a budget), Target, or Walmart!
Hope you find this useful as you progress in your knitting and/or crochet journey. Leave a comment below with any questions, comments, or to share a blocking tips or success stories! As always, tag us @mindfulknitsgram so we can see your lovely creations! Happy mindfulknitting!