31 Oct 2018

And the results are in!


Yes, the results are in! Not of the US Mid-term elections, but of my experiments with reflective yarn. In my last blogpost, I was talking about the problems of being seen when out walking or running now that the nights are drawing in. So I have been testing some RetroGlo yarn and have been trying various techniques to incorporate some of this into my knitting. 

And the results are that it works brilliantly (pun intended...!) Or rather, when it works, it's great. I first tried using the reflective yarn by duplicate stitching it into the ends of a scarf but I found that it made the scarf a little heavy and rough where I had added the thread. 

I then tried knitting with one strand of yarn and one of the reflective thread. However, it wasn't particularly effective since the thread tended to bury itself into the soft knitting stitches and did not glow as I really wanted it to. Also, I found that did not enjoy knitting with the reflective thread running alongside my regular yarn as the yarns are so dissimilar. 


However, I was more successful using it on a pocket for a backpack. I am working this in Lang Merino+ yarn using a two-tone grey with orange and yellow highlights. The RetroGlo yarn was almost a perfect match to the lighter grey yarn and can hardly be seen when viewed in the day-time.


However, as the lights go down the thread just catches the light and bounces it back at you.


But the real test is what it looks like at night. Then it can be seen as a series of brilliant dots which shine straight back at the source of light, such as a car's headlights. As the light moves a little to the left or right, the pattern of visible dots also changes slightly so they almost seem to flash and move. Amazing!

It has certainly been an interesting experiment so far and of course there may be other reflective yarns that could be worked directly into a pattern. I saw some interesting yarn by Viking Yarns when I was in Sweden recently, for example, so I may give that a try too. 

Do let me know if you have tried reflective yarn in your knitting and what worked for you and what didn't. I'd love to hear your ideas.

Happy Knitting!

Moira


Last Blogpost: Reflecting the Light

My website: www.wyndlestrawdesigns.com
Anna's website: www.kikuknits.com





. 24/12/18

10 Oct 2018

Reflecting the light


There were two things that really made an impression upon me when we visited Sweden recently. One was just how breathtakingly beautiful it is, with pale blue skies, distant vistas and seemingly endless lakes and waterways.

The other was how quickly the nights were drawing in. You could feel it, like a blanket quietly being lowered over the landscape. Each day was just a little bit shorter than it had been the week before. 



Of course this is not surprising, since it hardly goes dark in mid-summer but there is only 4 hours of daylight in the winter! However, it does mean that almost everything you do outside will be in the dark. Your morning commute to work, a walk to the post office, an afternoon trip to the shops... Chances are you will be walking or cycling in low-light conditions for at least some or all of these excursions.

So I have been thinking about how to be visible at night. I saw a video recently with a series of runners gradually coming closer. The people with a number of reflective patches and lines almost outlining their bodies could be seen from a long distance, the reflective material glowing in the headlights of the approaching car. However, the runners just wearing light-coloured clothing were barely visible until they were only a few feet away.



And of course this applies not only runners, but anyone out at night – walkers, cyclists, children and commuters. The problem is that most Hi-Vis clothing is generally quite cumbersome and an extra item to carry. You would probably think about it if you were going on a long trek, but might not bother if you were just popping down to the shops. And that's, of course, just when accidents happen...

So I have been thinking about how we as knitters can make ourselves more visible at night without gearing up in special clothing. Clearly, bright colours can help a bit, but I am also going to experiment with some reflective tape. I have a spool of tape currently on order and when it arrives I am going to try to incorporate it into a range of knits such as scarves and backpacks. 

That might just make the difference between being safe at night or not... 


I will post back here when I have tried the reflective tape out on the scarf I am just working on now. This is the Karlskrona Scarf and I am hoping to incorporate the tape into the zig-zag patterns at each end of the scarf. I think it will be an interesting test!

Until next time,

Happy Knitting!

Moira

Last Blogpost: Autumn is upon us!

Anna's Website: www.kikuknits.com

The photo at the top is Stockholm City Hall by Werner Nystrand, & the photo of the Swedish street was taken in Storgatan, Falköping, Sweden by Nasko. Many thanks to them both.


. 6/11/18

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...