History · Knitting loom · Structures

The chronology of loom knitting

The tools and techniques described in detail in the initial wave of 19th-century publications about diversionary fancywork represent crafts in practice at that time. Although some clues are provided about their histories, little can be deduced about their actual ages and origins. The drawing of purse molds from 1842 that provides this blog’s logo is… Continue reading The chronology of loom knitting

Cross-knit looping · Early instructions · Knitting loom · Techniques

Methods for looping wire

Instructions for knitting tubes of thin metal wire on a small peg loom were published in 1822 in the Dutch periodical Penélopé. They describe a technique that is referred to in instructions for a loom-knitted purse that appeared in an 1823 issue of the same publication. I’ll translate the wirework instructions extensively in a separate… Continue reading Methods for looping wire

Knitting · Knitting loom · Loop-and-twist · Techniques

Methods for knitting metal tubes

Tubular open-stitch knitting of the previously described type is a common find at Viking sites. This discussion began with it because there is little question about it being stocking stitch in the present-day Western sense, albeit with a compound structure. Comparable specimens with twisted stitches have also been found, as has the cross-knit looping that can… Continue reading Methods for knitting metal tubes

Cup mold · Knitting loom · Tools

The size and significance of purse molds

Several of the instructions discussed in earlier posts explicitly state that round purse molds were made of boxwood. This was widely preferred by the European woodturners of the day and therefore an obvious choice. The 1823 instructions for the Louisiana purse provide detailed dimensions for a cup mold. They specify that this “turned boxwood mold … should be 7 centimeters in diameter… Continue reading The size and significance of purse molds

Early instructions · Knitting loom

A French loom-knit purse

I’m eager to spend some time away from 19th-century fancywork and am going to wrap up its discussion for now with a French description of purse making on a round knitting loom. It appears in Élisabeth Bayle-Mouillard’s Manuel des Demoiselles ou Arts et Métiers (Young Ladies’ Handbook or Arts and Crafts) from 1826, where the instructions for… Continue reading A French loom-knit purse

Early instructions · Knitting loom

Purse in the style of the Queen Elisabeth

The second of the named purses in the 1823 volume of Penélope is made on a circular peg loom. The instructions for it refer to techniques that are described in the preceding volume, which in turn refer to other instructions there. Merging these cascading fragments into a single text (as in the following translation) gives… Continue reading Purse in the style of the Queen Elisabeth