Though many may feel that hand knitting is a thing of the past, it is not actually so. Even today many young women are interested in hand knitting because they believe it offers many benefits and advantages.
However, at the same time, there is no doubt that knitting machines are becoming extremely popular and it may not be wrong to mention that machine knitting is perhaps liked by more men and women when compared to hand knitting. Hence, it is quite common that many of us may be faced with the question: do knitting machines work better than hand knitting.
It may not be possible for most people to give a straight-jacketed answer. Even if the best of experts will agree that both hand knitting and machine knitting have their own pros and cons.
We will learn more about it over the next few lines. We are sure it will be informative and useful based on which the end-users may be in a position to make the right decision.
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Knitting Is Often Associated With Some Vivid Pictures
When people imagine or think about knitting, they usually visualize elderly women in particular using both their hands.
They make use of two wool-knitting needles, along with a bundle of yarn or woolen thread. Nothing much comes to our mind. However, before we conclude that most woolen garments are hand-knit, we need to have a look at the thousands of woolen garments that are bought and sold in the markets, both land-based as well as online outlets.
A big chunk of these woolen garments are machine knit. If you have had the opportunity of visiting a unit that knits woolen garments using machines, you will see the machines working to their full capacity moving up and down, and horizontally as the knitting process goes on.
Hence, it would be wrong to say that a major chunk of woolen garments are hand woven. In fact it could be the other way because of certain advantages associated with machine knitting. When it comes to cost, there is hardly any doubt that machine knit garments are much better.
They are cheaper and therefore customers believe that these machine knit sweaters and other such woolen garments offer them much better value for money.
Why Is There A Growing Demand For Knitting Machines?
If you look at the growth story of knitting machines, you will find that the growth story of machines that knit garments, woolen items and other such products has increased quite impressively.
While traditionalists may have a different view-point when it comes to choosing machines over the hand, the fact of the matter is that the world is changing and it is changing rapidly. People look at speed and convenience and knitting machines perhaps helps people on these two counts.
Apart from the twin advantages of speed and convenience, there are a few more reasons that could have contributed to the growing demand for knitting machines.
Minimum Chance of Errors: In spite of the best hands, hand-knitting could often lead to crooked cables or slipped stitches. This means the whole hand stitching till that point has to be undone and worked all over again. However, when you go in for machine knitting, this problem will almost be non-existent.
This is because knitting machines today are linked to automated and computer run programs and apps. They work perfectly and there is hardly any room for error or man-made mistakes.
Compare this with man-made stitches. Even a small lapse of concentration may lead to dropping a few stitches and this could spoil the whole effort.
Volumes and Numbers
Machines can stitch much faster compared to hand knitting and in fact that simply cannot be any comparison between the two as far as speed coupled with accuracy is concerned. If you have a look at the big units and factories that run on knitting machines, you will be amazed at the volume of woolen and other yarn units that they are capable of churning out in a day or perhaps even in an hour.
The above would have given our readers a reasonably good idea about the reasons for the growth in machine knitting though there are still many people who continue to have a soft corner towards hand knitting. Let us now spend some time trying to understand the basic difference between the two forms of knitting.
When it comes to machine knitting, please keep the following things in mind. Stitches can never be created equal even in the best of machines. Even if you use the same machine, more often than not, you will find that there could be differences as far as the length and breadth of stitches are concerned.
Further, you could run one batch with the same stitch patterns but recreating the same thing over and over again could often be a problem. However, you can overcome this problem when you use hand knitting.
Differences in gauge could also be a challenge. It would always be better to go in for a machine that helps you to make changes to the position or even the size of the needles. This will help you to go in for a different gauge.
While this can also be done if you prefer hand knitting, machines at times could create major problems.
Many machines may have the needles that are firmly locked in a particular place. Therefore, it may be tough for you to adapt to different gauges. This could be a tedious job and it could take up quite a bit of time.
Machine knitting, however, has a major difference over hand knitting as far as gauge sizes are concerned. You could choose different machines that could stitch clothing and woolen garments of different gauges. For example, you have machines with standard gauge knitting features.
On the other hand if you need bulky gauges, you have specific machines to do these kinds of jobs. On the other side, if you are looking for fine or even ultrafine gauges you could buy machines that could spin such ultrafine yarns instead of more fuzzy yarn.
The Final Word
At the end of the day, we have reasons to believe that machine knitting is slowly gaining in popularity and hand knitting might be falling back and may vanish into oblivion. However, there are some hardcore fans of hand knitting who continue to spin and make some majestic woolen and other garments using their skill set and experience.