Leather Knitting Belt hand-crafted in UK natural materials horsehair stuffed and saddle-stitched, heritage. Customised to your own size.#85

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Leather Knitting Belt hand-crafted in UK natural materials horsehair stuffed and saddle-stitched, heritage. Customised to your own size.#85

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£33.00+

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Enter your waist measurement; I will personalise the belt to your measurements, allowing a few extra centimetres (or inches) for comfort and ease of use. If you want different proportions please ask and I will do my best.

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Item details

Handmade item

Materials

natural leather, metal rivets and buckles, horsehair stuffing, linen or polyester strong thread, hand stitching

These leather knitting belts, known as makkin belts in Shetland, are made to a traditional pattern in Dorset on the South Coast of England, by a craftswoman in response to the demand for these aids to speedy, relaxed and neat knitting.

Update: I AM NOW WORKING ON SEVERAL COLOURWAYS, FOR MY NEXT COMPLETIONS.

I make the belts to varying lengths and I measure to one of the centre holes on the leather belt and add generous allowance for ease. I am always willing to punch more holes to accommodate smaller waists - just ask! Most belts start off at about 48" - 122cm but will be finished to your personalisation requirements.

The tan belts are made from very heavy leather and built to last 'for ever'! Sewing these is slower work, so these cost a little more. One oof them is backed by suede, the other by a textile 'leatherettte'.

I will make your belt several centimetres bigger than your normal waistline or upper hipline, as a slightly looser belt is easier to use. If you need a non-standard measurement please ask for a customised order. For international sizing recommendations see below.

The belts are cut from leather and then handstitched in traditional saddle-stitch using waxed linen or polyester thread. The belt is stuffed with horsehair (including some hoghair) from a professional supplier and assembled using metal rivets and buckles. Every stage of the process is hand-crafted by myself to a pattern very close to the original Shetland belts. Handling the belt while stitching and stuffing is likely to make slight marks, this is a natural effect of hand-making, It is very difficult to completely avoid them.

A knitting belt allows the knitting process to be speeded up as the right hand is freed from holding the weight of the knitting, especially when working on heavier garments such as ganseys, jerseys, sweaters and shawls, etc. Push the right needle in until it is roughly horizontal while being firmly held. Most knitting belt users knit with their work around waist level as this is more relaxing. Others swear that sat on the hip-line is the most useful and visible place to place it! Hold your hand OVER the right needle, holding your thumb against the needle as a fulcrum. This allows the remaining fingers to wrap the wool and adjust the tension. Bring the pad of the belt towards centre front for short needles, and push it round towards the back for very long needles. You will soon discover your own favourite way of wearing it.

Your left hand does the moving, with the right-hand needle held firm. You will discover that the time taken to adjust to using the belt will usually be only a few minutes. I watched my 9-year old grand-daughter use a knitting belt for the first time, and and in no time at all she had relaxed her right hand grip and was knitting away faster than before. It is not essential to do round knitting either - you can work on 'flat' knitting. Thin needles fit in any hole and will 'jam' nicely - larger needles can be forced into any hole and will spread the leather - keep a couple of holes specially for big needles - I punch a few bigger holes on every belt - there could be up to a week's waiting time for further customised belts.

A knitting belt helps those with a tendancy to cramp as the need to grasp the needle tightly is removed. Other difficulties such as arthritis and missing/damaged digits will be helped by using this belt. If you use the English method of knitting (holding the yarn in your right hand) the movement of your wrist is greatly reduced and you will be able to knit for many hours just like the old professional knitters. A belt takes the weight of the completed fabric off your hand. The needle is held firmly in the horsehair stuffing, which does not pack down, or break up over time. Savvy knitters gather the hems of their work with strong thread and loop it up to the belt, taking the weight off the needles.

Your left hand works as normal, but you will notice that it 'takes over' the backwards and forwards / up and down movements that the right-hand usually manages in 'freehand' knitting. This just happens without any need to work out how to do it!

If your left hand is handicapped by such debilating accidents as stroke or amputation, you could move the knitting belt to your left-hand side and let your right-hand take over all the manipulation.

Finally, your finished knitting will be neater as the tension is evened out. When purling I find that I no longer produce those annoying looser purl rows which spoil so much stocking-stitch fabric; my purling is tightened up - I hope it helps your purling too!

If you watch my Youtube videos ( woollywoodlanders Channel) you will notice that I am using a knitting belt. My original Shetland knitting belt has been in almost daily use for over 15 years, has softened and shows no signs of becoming worn out. I hope my 21st century knitting belts will last your knitting lifetime too. I read recently that the knitting-belt maker of the long-established Shetland workshop had sadly passed away, and I decided to make my own belts available to knitters worldwide.

SORRY - these knitting belts do not work for circular needles or single knob pins or needles. You need to use double-pointed needles and I offer these elsewhere on my site.

Help on ordering sizes:
UK & AU 10 , US 6, EU 38 28 inch/71 cm waist; I deliver a belt approx. 35 inches to last hole
12, 8, 40, 30 inch/ 76 cm 37 inches
14, 10 42, 32 inch/ 81 cm 39 inches
16, 12, 44, 34 inch/ 86 cm 41 inches
18, 14, 46, 36 inch/ 91.5 cm 43 inches
20, 16, 48, 38 inch/ 96.5 cm 45 inches and so on.

The max size I can usually create is around 55 inches long (waist 49", 124 cm) but sometimes the belt leather comes in longer lengths! Please contact me for a special measurement.

For a knitter smaller than UK 10, US 6, I recommend ordering a 34 inch belt and asking me to add additional holes to fit the smaller waist.

If you wish to order specifically for a child please think ahead and order an appropriate size. As long as the 'smallest' hole fits the child currently, any excess will tuck into the belt loop until the child grows.

Measure your waist over clothing, not tight (!) to allow for cardigans etc. For a gift, if in doubt, order a generous waist size and ask me to add additional 'smaller' holes. I don't mind how many holes you want me to punch ...
These leather knitting belts, known as makkin belts in Shetland, are made to a traditional pattern in Dorset on the South Coast of England, by a craftswoman in response to the demand for these aids to speedy, relaxed and neat knitting.

Update: I AM NOW WORKING ON SEVERAL COLOURWAYS, FOR MY NEXT COMPLETIONS.

I make the belts to varying lengths and I measure to one of the centre holes on the leather belt and add generous allowance for ease. I am always willing to punch more holes to accommodate smaller waists - just ask! Most belts start off at about 48" - 122cm but will be finished to your personalisation requirements.

The tan belts are made from very heavy leather and built to last 'for ever'! Sewing these is slower work, so these cost a little more. One oof them is backed by suede, the other by a textile 'leatherettte'.

I will make your belt several centimetres bigger than your normal waistline or upper hipline, as a slightly looser belt is easier to use. If you need a non-standard measurement please ask for a customised order. For international sizing recommendations see below.

The belts are cut from leather and then handstitched in traditional saddle-stitch using waxed linen or polyester thread. The belt is stuffed with horsehair (including some hoghair) from a professional supplier and assembled using metal rivets and buckles. Every stage of the process is hand-crafted by myself to a pattern very close to the original Shetland belts. Handling the belt while stitching and stuffing is likely to make slight marks, this is a natural effect of hand-making, It is very difficult to completely avoid them.

A knitting belt allows the knitting process to be speeded up as the right hand is freed from holding the weight of the knitting, especially when working on heavier garments such as ganseys, jerseys, sweaters and shawls, etc. Push the right needle in until it is roughly horizontal while being firmly held. Most knitting belt users knit with their work around waist level as this is more relaxing. Others swear that sat on the hip-line is the most useful and visible place to place it! Hold your hand OVER the right needle, holding your thumb against the needle as a fulcrum. This allows the remaining fingers to wrap the wool and adjust the tension. Bring the pad of the belt towards centre front for short needles, and push it round towards the back for very long needles. You will soon discover your own favourite way of wearing it.

Your left hand does the moving, with the right-hand needle held firm. You will discover that the time taken to adjust to using the belt will usually be only a few minutes. I watched my 9-year old grand-daughter use a knitting belt for the first time, and and in no time at all she had relaxed her right hand grip and was knitting away faster than before. It is not essential to do round knitting either - you can work on 'flat' knitting. Thin needles fit in any hole and will 'jam' nicely - larger needles can be forced into any hole and will spread the leather - keep a couple of holes specially for big needles - I punch a few bigger holes on every belt - there could be up to a week's waiting time for further customised belts.

A knitting belt helps those with a tendancy to cramp as the need to grasp the needle tightly is removed. Other difficulties such as arthritis and missing/damaged digits will be helped by using this belt. If you use the English method of knitting (holding the yarn in your right hand) the movement of your wrist is greatly reduced and you will be able to knit for many hours just like the old professional knitters. A belt takes the weight of the completed fabric off your hand. The needle is held firmly in the horsehair stuffing, which does not pack down, or break up over time. Savvy knitters gather the hems of their work with strong thread and loop it up to the belt, taking the weight off the needles.

Your left hand works as normal, but you will notice that it 'takes over' the backwards and forwards / up and down movements that the right-hand usually manages in 'freehand' knitting. This just happens without any need to work out how to do it!

If your left hand is handicapped by such debilating accidents as stroke or amputation, you could move the knitting belt to your left-hand side and let your right-hand take over all the manipulation.

Finally, your finished knitting will be neater as the tension is evened out. When purling I find that I no longer produce those annoying looser purl rows which spoil so much stocking-stitch fabric; my purling is tightened up - I hope it helps your purling too!

If you watch my Youtube videos ( woollywoodlanders Channel) you will notice that I am using a knitting belt. My original Shetland knitting belt has been in almost daily use for over 15 years, has softened and shows no signs of becoming worn out. I hope my 21st century knitting belts will last your knitting lifetime too. I read recently that the knitting-belt maker of the long-established Shetland workshop had sadly passed away, and I decided to make my own belts available to knitters worldwide.

SORRY - these knitting belts do not work for circular needles or single knob pins or needles. You need to use double-pointed needles and I offer these elsewhere on my site.

Help on ordering sizes:
UK & AU 10 , US 6, EU 38 28 inch/71 cm waist; I deliver a belt approx. 35 inches to last hole
12, 8, 40, 30 inch/ 76 cm 37 inches
14, 10 42, 32 inch/ 81 cm 39 inches
16, 12, 44, 34 inch/ 86 cm 41 inches
18, 14, 46, 36 inch/ 91.5 cm 43 inches
20, 16, 48, 38 inch/ 96.5 cm 45 inches and so on.

The max size I can usually create is around 55 inches long (waist 49", 124 cm) but sometimes the belt leather comes in longer lengths! Please contact me for a special measurement.

For a knitter smaller than UK 10, US 6, I recommend ordering a 34 inch belt and asking me to add additional holes to fit the smaller waist.

If you wish to order specifically for a child please think ahead and order an appropriate size. As long as the 'smallest' hole fits the child currently, any excess will tuck into the belt loop until the child grows.

Measure your waist over clothing, not tight (!) to allow for cardigans etc. For a gift, if in doubt, order a generous waist size and ask me to add additional 'smaller' holes. I don't mind how many holes you want me to punch ...

Delivery & returns

Get it soon. Estimated delivery: May 21 - 22
From United Kingdom
£3.80 delivery to United Kingdom
Returns and exchanges accepted
Exceptions may apply. See return policy

Reviews

5 out of 5 stars (29)

Returns & exchanges

I gladly accept returns and exchanges

Contact me within: 14 days of delivery
Send items back within: 30 days of delivery

I don't accept cancellations

But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

The following items can't be returned or exchanged

Because of the nature of these items, unless they arrive damaged or defective, I can't accept returns for:
  • Custom or personalised orders
  • Perishable products (like food or flowers)
  • Digital downloads
  • Intimate items (for health/hygiene reasons)

Conditions of return

Buyers are responsible for return postage costs. If the item is not returned in its original condition, the buyer is responsible for any loss in value.

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