different ways of fabric production
Knitting is a process of manufacturing a
fabric by inter looping of yarns.
• Knitting is the second most important
method of fabric formation.
• It can be defined as a needle technique
of fabric formation, in which, with the
help of knitting needles , loops are
formed to make a fabric or garment.
• Fabric can be formed by hand or
machine knitting , but the basic
principle remains exactly the same i.e.
pulling a new loop through the old
Common Knitting terms
Wales :- A wale is a vertical column
of loops produced by the same needle
knitting at successive knitting cycles.
The number of Wales determine the
width of the fabric and they are
measured in units of Wales per
Courses :- Courses are rows of
loops across the width of the fabric
produced by adjacent needles during
the same knitting cycle and are
measured in units of courses per
centimeter. The courses determine
the length of the fabrics
Common Knitting terms
Stitch density :- Stitch density is a term frequently used in knitting and
represents the total number of needles loop in a given area. Stitch density
is the product of Courses and Wales per unit length and is measured in
units of loops per square centimeter.
Stitch Length :- the stitch length is one of the most important factor
controlling the properties of knitted fabrics. The stitch length , measured
in millimeter is the length of the yarn in the knitted loop. Generally longer
the stitch length, the more open and lighter the fabric.
Count :- the number of wales measured along the width of the fabric is
called wale count or wale density. Wale count is expresses as number of
wales per inch (WPI). The courses measured along the length of the fabric
is called course count or course density. Course count is usually
expressed as the number of courses per inch (CPI). Count of the fabric is
very important for the fabric analysis.
For Example: if a fabric is having 12 wales and 15 courses per inch, its
fabric count be expressed as ( 12x15 )
Development of Knitting
The word knitting is derived from the Sanskrit word Nahyati. According to the textile
history, it is said that finger knitting started since 1000 BC. In finger knitting, the fabric was
produced on the hand using the fingers. The looping was done on the fingers. The fabric was
produced by removing a new loop through an old loop.
Since the fabric produced on the hand was smaller in width the peg knitting was introduced.
The finger knitting had only 4 loops in width but in peg knitting more numbers of loops was
possible. According to the width of the fabric the number of pegs was decided.
Hand knitting with 2 pins was practiced since 256 AD. The knitted fabrics were prepared
with the help of 2 pins. In about 5th century AD an oldest knitted article (sock) was seen.
Reverent William Lee, in 1589 a resident of England invented the first knitting machine with
bearded needle. The gauge of the machine was 8npi and afterwards it was made upto 20npi.
The machine had a potential of knitting 10 times more than hand knitting with two pins.
Further many more warp and weft machines were developed but the principle remained the
In the 18th century , rib knitting machine, warp knitting machines and circular knitting frame
In the 19th century, latch needle, compound needle, fashioning mechanism, seamless heal and
toe i.e. sock, flat knitting machine, interlock knitting were invented all over the world.
In the 20th century, double cylinder circular machine, electronic needle selection, relanit
principle, Pizo electronic jacquard etc were invented
Distinguish between woven and knits
Two types of threads are used
One type of thread is used
Yarn movement is restricted
Yarn movement is not restricted
Highly crease resistant
Ironing is necessary
Requires no ironing
Garment weaving not possible
Garment knitting is possible
Cutting waste cannot be reduced
Cutting waste can be minimized
Less stable fabric