Machine Knitting Designs by Clair  

Hello everyone and a warm welcome to my machine knitting designs website. My name is Clair Crowston and this website is intended for anyone, young or not so young, who has an interest in machine knitting and knitwear. Here is a photo of me modelling one of my designs (#28).

I have an array of machine knitting patterns that have been used to create the garments shown on the accompanying pages. For machine knitters of all capabilities, my patterns are easy to follow; there really is something for everybody. For any of you non-machine knitters I will knit any of my designs to order (please enquire via the
contact page for prices).

I am available for lessons (private tuition), demonstrations and full day workshops.

Click on images to go to appropriate pattern's page.


I mostly use a Knitmaster machine to create my knitwear but occasionally use a Brother machine too. Included in all my knitting patterns are punchcards for both Knitmaster and Brother machines where necessary. For those of you who are new to this craft, I shall endeavour to explain a little about how a knitting machine works.

A knitting machine , also known as a knitting frame , knitting loom or hand knitting machine , is used to produce knitted fabrics on a fixed bed of hooked needles. Knitting machines can be hand powered or a motor can be added to do the hard work automatically. The machine knitting pattern stitches can be selected by manipulating the needles by hand or with push-buttons and dials, mechanical punch cards or electronic pattern reading devices and computers.

There are domestic and industrial models, with either flat or circular beds that produce rectangular or tubular fabrics. Double bed machines have two flat beds facing each other, in order to produce purl and plain rib fabrics plus a variety of multi patterns. Ribbing attachments can be added to single bed machines to achieve a similar result.

Needles will either knit or not, and the un-knitted yarn portions will lie under (slip stitch) or over the needle or be held in the needle hook (tuck stitch). Needles can be placed in holding position to allow short row shaping. Most of these automated knitting machines can knit two colour "fair isle" patterns automatically and have machine stitch patterning features such as plating and knit-weaving. Plating refers to knitting with two strands of yarn that are held in such a way that one is in front of the other. Plated effects can be particularly striking in a ribbed fabric. Knit-weaving refers to a technique in which a separate piece of yarn, often heavier than the knitted fabric, is carried along and caught between stitches to produce an effect like weaving. With knit-woven fabric, the purl side (usually the wrong side) is the right side of the fabric. With the addition of a lace carriage, stitches can be transferred from one needle to the next. The yarn passes through a tensioning mechanism and down through the knit carriage, which feeds the yarn to the needles as they knit.

Domestic knitting machines use the weft knitting method which produces a fabric similar to hand knitting. Knitting proceeds more quickly than in hand knitting, where (usually two) straight needles are held in the hand and each stitch is manipulated individually across the row. Knitting machines work an entire row of loops in a single movement.

The fabric produced using a knitting machine is of a more even texture than hand-knitted fabric, which is particularly noticeable on large areas of plain stocking stitch. This is an advantage, and saves a considerable amount of time. Many people prefer the look of hand knitting and skilled hand knitters can produce quite even fabric, while machine knitters need little skill to produce a good fabric as the machine tension does the job for them. Some stitch patterns (e.g., tuck stitches) are much easier to produce with a knitting machine.