Why We Block our Knitting: The Ivy Trellis Hat
“I’ve never blocked any of my projects.”
“Lace is the only thing I bother blocking.”
“I don’t know how to block my knitting/crochet.”
These are all statements we hear regularly here at Stash. Blocking is one of those things that unless you’re told what it is and why it matters, you might just skip altogether.
All of your projects can benefit from a good bath & block. Why? Blocking elevates your finished item from looking pretty good to being a stunning piece of handmade art.
Soaking your knits allows the wool to bloom and the stitches to relax in a way that is only possible by fully submerging your knitting.
One of our most recent shop samples is the lovely Ivy Trellis Hat, which uses cables and a small bit of lace to produce a gorgeous botanical motif.
Straight off the needles (above), you can see the leaf motif, but the traveling vines are harder to make out and it looks a bit crumpled.
Enter: the magic of blocking.
Here’s a quick 3-step guide to blocking a lace hat:
- soak in a sink full of lukewarm water with a squirt of Soak, our favorite wool wash, for around 20 minutes.
- squeeze out the excess water by hand & roll it up in a towel to absorb even more water
- gently stretch the hat over a 10″ salad plate to give it a tam shape. You could also use a balloon, if you’d prefer a beanie style instead.
This incredible transformation is why we block our knits! The cables and leaves really pop out from the background and the motif looks so much better!
Our hat is knit with Sweet Georgia Superwash Sport, a stunning hand-dyed wool (we just got a restock of colors, too!). This yarn can technically be machine washed. However, to prolong the life of your projects, we always recommend hand washing.
Summer is a great time to refresh your handknit pieces that you worked so hard on. Bonus: they dry a whole lot faster this time of year!