What does it mean to ‘block’? A creator explains how to make your knits fit better with this simple method.

Have you ever had a sweater you’ve been excited to style — only to realize that it doesn’t quite fit? One creator has taken to TikTok to show how she “blocks” her knits when she encounters this problem.

On Nov. 26, Juicy Luce (@juicylu.ce), a crochet creator and small business owner (she sells her patterns online), posted a tutorial on how to properly block an article of clothing. For her video, Luce demonstrated her blocking technique on a knit vest she made herself.

“Some people were really confused as to what I meant by blocking. I think they thought I was talking about an ex or something,” she says in the video. “You can see on my vest here that it pulls in a little bit weirdly at my hips, but I wanted it to be a bit more oversized and full, instead of straight down.”

What is blocking?

According to Cocoknits, an Oakland, Calif.-based team of women who share knowledge of knitting on their online platform, “Blocking is the process of wetting or steaming your final pieces of knitting to set the finished size and even out the stitches.”

First, Luce says to start by soaking the knit in warm water for about 20 to 30 minutes to “loosen up the fibers.” Doing this makes the knit more flexible. Luce then suggests that, once the knit has been thoroughly soaked, you dry it by rolling it up in a towel and stomping on it to extract any excess water.

Next up? The actually blocking part of the process. Once the blocking mats have been set up — Luce uses foam play mats but says yoga mats or even a towel will suffice — you pin your knit to the mats in your desired shape. Then you leave it to dry.

“Hopefully you guys can kinda see the difference there,” she says of the finished, looser-fitted knit. “It’s basically just evened out some of the tension…made it look a little bit neater and a little bit cooler, in my opinion.”

Keep in mind that there are varying degrees of blocking. Thick, coarse wool may require very heavy blocking, for instance. To do this, you can spray the entire item with water from a spray bottle. Per Cocoknits:

  • For light blocking, you can now lift the cloth and allow the knitting to dry.

  • For medium/heavy blocking, leave the cloth in place until it has dried. If your knitting is still damp, allow it to dry before removing.

TikTok users who are interested in the blocking process have taken to Luce’s comment section to praise this method as well as ask questions about it.

“This might be a really stupid question, but what happens once you’ve washed it?” @vishnuggs asked. Luce responded, “You’ve just got to dry it flat again, and then it should keep shape! I try to avoid washing them as much as possible, so wipe down or something instead.”

“Love !! can rly see the difference xx,” @katyadenton wrote.

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