Warp knitting is a method of knitting that takes the yarn through zigzags down the fabrics length and follows in adjacent columns rather than just one single row. This type of knitting is typically done on a machine as opposed to by hand. This is because this technique requires you to have separate yarn strands that are equal to the amount of stitches in the row and this is too complex for most people to do by hand.
Types of Warp Knitting
When doing warp knitting, there are several types of fabrics that can be used for specific pieces. The following types of fabrics are the most popular for this knitting technique due to the fact that they are easy to sew compared to other fabrics and are pretty resistant to runs and tears.
• Milanese fabric is extremely strong and stable. It is also smooth and tends to be costlier than other fabrics. Though this fabric is difficult to come by, if you can get it then you have the perfect material for making soft and silky lingerie.
• Tricot fabric is also great for making lingerie and is very common. Since it is such a common material you can get it for a decent price.
• Raschel fabrics are perfect for making items that do not stretch and provide the warmth of bulk. You have likely seen this material before without even knowing it! It is found in winter coat linings as well as in dresses and skirts.
In contrast to warp knitting you have weft knitting. Weft knitting is typically made from a single and continuous strand of yarn. When doing a weft stitch you are passing a loop to the front of the loop that precedes it and drawing it through to the back. This type of knitting method is less complex than warp knitting and can be done by hand or by machine. The majority of knitted items you find in stores are made by weft knitting.
The Difference Between Warp Knitting and Weft Knitting
There are many differences between warp knitting and weft knitting. The following are the main things you will find that separate these two knitting techniques:
• With warp knitting you make loops that are to the fabrics length. With weft knitting the loops are made in relation to the fabrics width.
• Warp knitting is elastic in way of the length while weft knitting is to the width.
• The chance of shrinking is less with warp knitted items and the change is higher with those knitted in weft style.
• Warp knitted items have a lower level of elasticity and weft knitted items have a higher level.
• When you use the warp knitting method, the yarn comes from the beam. The yarn comes from the cone when weft knitting.
• One yarn is needed for each needle when warp knitting. It is opposite with weft knitting.
• Warp knitting allows you do make any design with ease; weft knitting is much more complex.
• Coarse fabric is what is needed for warp knitting, while thin is better for weft knitting.
• Warp knitting can be dry washes while hand washing is recommended for weft knitting.
Advantages of Warp and Weft Knitting
When working with warp knitting, one of the main advantages is that the fabric is very tightly knit with this process. Also, the fabric used in warp knitting is generally thin so the loops are small compared to double knitted fabrics. In addition to these few things, the other advantages to be noted include:
• Fine appearance of the fabric
• Loops on warped knitting are generally clean and smooth looking with a balance on the surface that gives it a crisp and neat look.
• The yarn is unroving and this is a certain difference from weft knitting.
• The production of warp knit products is low.
Now for the disadvantages:
• The material is raw so is not always the easiest to work with.
• You must be mindful of yarn count when warp knitting as it must be fine in order to work well and become a sturdy item.
• Fixing problems due to machine function can take lots of time and become a great aggravation. However, warp knitting is extremely difficult to be done by hand.
Take all of these things into consideration when deciding whether warp knitting or weft knitting is a better choice for you.