Saturday, June 12, 2010

Knitting the viking way

Viking knit fascinates me.  I love wrapping the wire, then pulling a small piece through the draw plate to get something huge.  I started a few little pieces in single knit, but could not understand how the double knit worked (despite fairly detailed drawings in  Art Jewelry, Sept. 2009).  Next I took a little class at Lizette's Great Beadginnings in Havana, FLA.  Apparently I was missing the forest for the trees.  The double knit was not the giant leap forward I made it out to be in my head, it was simply focusing on counting the rungs and not the loops that was getting in my way (here are some vk directions, some tips, some discussion of double knit with lots of pictures to clear up repeated confusion, i.e., rows = rungs).  I think this might be enough to get you started.  Below are a few photos of my first attempt.  This is all single knit, but you can see that I started with lots of petals.

I decided to start with eight petals - what was I thinking!
 This shows you how long my piece was before drawing it.
After going through the draw plate.
You can compare the length to the first photo.

Patinaed, tumbled, and sporting some beads.
If you try this yourself, don't run out and look for a drawplate.  I made mine from a piece of scrap wood into which I drilled holes.  I made mine in much the same way as is shown here.  I have a huge selection of bits and probably started with something like 1/2 in. and continued making holes until I got down to a fairly small diameter.  As I was drilling holes in the board, mine is a long and slender, not rectangular with a handle, I kept thinking of the paddle used for corporal punishment favored by my PE teacher in junior high. Not that I have any first hand knowledge - just seeing that paddle kept me dressing for gym all three years.

And yes, that is rosemary growing behind the ceramic lantern I used for a photo prop.  I bought a little pot in the veggie section of Publix and it has grown like crazy.  I snip and snip at it when I cook so it has bushed out to the point that I actually have to prune it.

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