Double Jacquard with AYAB

Double jacquard is a way of creating a double sided fabric with both beds of the knitting machine, which resolves the issue of large floats in a jacquard design. I've made double jacquard before with a punchcard machine and it's confusing and labour intensive to design the punchcard. AYAB is really clever and does all the hard work for you, all you have to do is load your design file as usual and just change the settings to double bed operation.

The extra equipment required to knit double jacquard is a colour changer. As the method knits two rows in each colour, this is a much quicker way of changing colours as opposed to doing it manually . My old knitting machine (a Knitmaster) had an automatic version of a colour changer where the yarn changed every time you engaged the carriage into the colour changer. The Brother ones don't do this, which is a little disappointing, but all I really need to do now is reach over to the end of the machine and press a button every two rows. 

Double jacquard makes a double sided fabric that can be quite thick, depending on the yarn used. From experience I've found a fabric knitted with a 4 ply weight with a completely solid background too chunky and inflexible. Instead, I used a ladderback technique, where, after the initial cast on, two needles are transferred to the main bed, with the third remaining on the ribber (see right image above). This creates a more stretchy, lighter fabric ideal for accessories such as scarves. It also uses less yarn and creates an interesting fabric on both sides (see images below). I'm looking forward to using this technique with my own naturally dyed yarns!

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