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The Essential Guide to Finishing Handknits

with Anne Hanson
The Essential Guide to Finishing Handknits
Finish any hand-knitting project with finesse. Learn the best techniques for edge finishes, weaving in ends, blocking, seaming, button and neck bands, zippers, hemming and more.

Achieve a flawless finish for your handknits alongside Knitspot owner Anne Hanson. Set yourself up for effortless finishing with proper preparation. Weave in ends the right way on textured, smooth and sheer fabrics. Choose the best blocking technique for silky results with flat edges and beautiful drape. Create smooth seams with mattress stitch, finish flat pieces with whipstitch, match patterns with the three-needle bind-off, graft invisible seams and tackle curved seams with confidence. Finish edges with beautifully balanced button and neck bands. Apply the perfect zipper by hand or with a sewing machine. Work gorgeous hems for top-down and bottom-up garments. Become an authority on finishing handknits!

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Lesson plan


Lesson 1. Introduction

  • Meet your instructor, designer Anne Hanson, and learn more about how you can use this class a reference tool to return to techniques you want to learn or review whenever you need!


Lesson 2. Preparing for Finishing in Your Knitting

  • Set yourself up for a successful finish before you even begin your project. Anne walks you through information in a typical pattern you'll want to consider, and shows you how to swatch for your project. Getting the right gauge is critical for achieving the proper fit; Anne helps you get there and discusses finishing details to think about from the beginning.


Lesson 3. Weaving In Loose Ends

  • Loose tails are an inevitable part of finishing a project, but with a wave of your magic wand a tapestry needle you can make them disappear! Anne shows you step by step how to weave in ends vertically, horizontally and on sheer or lacy knits. You'll also learn how to splice weak or broken yarn.


Lesson 4. Blocking

  • Learn the difference between steam- and wet-blocking to even out your stitches and gently encourage your finished pieces to reach the dimensions you desire. Whether you're working with flat or shaped knitting, Anne gives you the direction you need.


Lesson 5. Seaming

  • You'll have a front-row seat as Anne demonstrates how to accurately and invisibly seam up knit garments with vertical or horizontal mattress stitch, graft two sets of live stitches, use whipstitch to join garter-stitch edges or finish shoulders with a three-needle bind-off. Learn the order in which to assemble a sweater for flawless results!


Lesson 6. Adding Button & Neck Bands

  • Picking up stitches to add a neck band or button band is easy with Anne's guidance. Follow along with a close-up view, and learn how to get your band perfectly centered. You'll even learn how to install a faux button band with grosgrain ribbon and snaps.


Lesson 7. Sewing In a Zipper

  • Zip-up sweaters are trendy and cute, and zippers are easy to install by hand or with a sewing machine. Anne shares some tips for finding just the right zipper for your project, then shows how to install it so it won't sag or snag.


Lesson 8. Hemming & Securing Facings

  • Learn how to secure both top-down and bottom-up hems seamlessly with a three-needle join or grafting, and tack down facings with invisible stitching. You'll be proud to show off your perfectly and professionally finished project!

Praise for Anne Hanson's Button Bands & Buttonholes:

"I have learned so many things in this class. These little details really make a difference in how we finish our sweaters. Anne has such a nice, soft-spoken, low-key teaching style. Everyone who knits could benefit from these wonderful and helpful hints."
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  • Answers from Anne in our virtual classroom
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