There are many ways to block knitted things. I’m sure I’m doing a thousand million things that are technically “wrong” when I do it, but it works well for me. Here’s my very personal method, with as many pictures and as few words as possible.
Start with a clean sink.
Water should be “tepid” (who the hell knows what THAT means, am I right?) I get it warm but not scalding. Personally, I get it to where I am just barely okay with it on the inside of my wrist. Way TOO hot would do something called “felting” if you’re dealing with a natural fiber like wool or alpaca. Felting is bad, felting is evil, felting is not our friend. Avoid felting.
Our victim *** ahem *** finished project. A hat that I am blocking in secret because it will be a Christmas gift for the Beard.
Fill up the sink high enough to submerge the project but not so high you’ll overflow when you add the object. Hats are small. Shawls and sweaters are large. Plan accordingly. Blankets go in the bathtub.
Once the sink is full you can add any blocking helpers to your water, like products called Eucalan, Soak, etc. I sometimes use these (they smell heavenly!) but today I’m going au naturale, aka just warm water.
Very gently submerge your item.
I try to gently press my item until it is completely submerged and all the air has come out – but the important thing is not to agitate the item into the water. Agitating (aka shaking or rubbing your knitted item) causes felting. Remember, felting is bad, felting is evil, felting is not our friend. Avoid felting.
Once the item’s fully submerged and you’re confident it’ll stay under water (more or less) you can leave it alone. Employ a guard kitty if you must to keep it safe, and set a timer for anywhere from 15-45 minutes. (30 to 40 gives me the best results, but this is another one of those personal things!) Go have a cup of tea and plan your next project. Stay tuned for Part 2, The Un-Moistening.