Mesh structures

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Mesh structures can be produced by pillar stitch/inlay, which may be used alone or as the ground for designs produced by pattern bars. The overlaps and underlaps of the front guide bar knitting the mesh will hold (on the technical back of the fabric) the inlay pattern threads of guide bars behind it at each course. That is the effect side of the fabric. Mesh is usually made by a single, fully-threaded guide bar knitting an open lap pillar stitch or its variant whose wales are reinforced and joined together by one or more inlay guide bars (often fully threaded).

Hexagonal mesh is achieved by wale distortion (because there are fewer under-laps joining the wales together) and by knitting tight loops in a fine yarn for the gauge of the machine. This mesh is produced by open laps followed by a closed lap which causes the lapping to alternate between two adjacent wales and forms the underlaps and inclined overlaps which close the top and bottom of the staggered mesh holes (Fig. 28.7).

Three-course tulle is the standard mesh for raschel lace.

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