Sometimes you just have to start over—
I have a pink sweater—a cardigan that is sort of a shawl/cardi. The front hangs down in a v shape and it covers my thighs (always a good thing.) I paid $17 on sale at Target. It is made of the finest acrylic and I love it. So when perusing some old Knitters magazines, I leaped upon a pattern called Chocolate Wrapper. (The word “chocolate” didn’t hurt either.)
This is a vest pattern. Well, you know how long it takes to knit those pesky sleeve things. Besides, sleeves are rarely necessary in Charlotte. (I am now rationalizing because I don’t need any more vests.)
In the stash are 11 balls of elann’s Bamboo Fusion in Garnet; it’s probably enough. Swatch?—What swatch? I don’t need no stinking swatch! (Have you figured out where this is headed?) Cast on 119 sts and knit for two days. Learn some neat stitch tricks to follow the pattern I almost like while suspecting from the get-go that the gauge is wrong.
What is this insane hope that it will work out that takes possession of an experienced, usually smart knitter and keeps her plodding along for two days before the Big Rip-out? Even Steve knows that doubt is always a sign for the knitter to stop now. That’s why I never tell him when the doubt creeps in. No, I continue to knit, filled with hope and belief, right up until the Roadrunner drops the anvil on my head.
Ripping out isn’t so bad. I can now prevent the cotton overstretching by using a much smaller needle. Cotton has no memory and once it is stretched out, it just stays there. I can also use some different st patterns. Too many holes in a design are just opportunities for me to catch it on something and rip an ugly.
The upside is that I met this new yarn and it is CHEAP! Here are the specs: 50% bamboo, 31.2% cotton, 18.8% acrylic; 19 sts/4 inches on US7; 50 gr = 96 yards. It is an 8 ply (I counted them.) and therefore it will split some if you are not careful. It costs $2.98——yes, $2.98 a ball plus shipping. It knits up so SOFT! Like holding a cloud in your hand. I’m talking soft.
The bamboo catches the light and gives it a little gleam, not quite a shine. The bamboo and acrylic mix keep the cotton from being so heavy it will stretch to the floor while wearing it. I haven’t laundered it –no swatch, remember?—but I anticipate it will do well. The ball band says “machine wash cold; dry flat.”
Why would I take the time to carefully knit a yarn that is multi-plied and therefore splittable? It’s the softness factor.
I could get softness from a softball spun yarn such as Blue Sky DyedCotton which has one big, soft ply and a thin thread wrapped around it, but those softly spun yarns pill like crazy. Especially under the arms of a garment. I’d rather get my softness from a multi-ply that won’t pill. And you know me, if I lose a ply or two in a stitch, I’ll just touch it up with some sewing thread at the end——or not.
Now, the website is elann.com. Please leave some of the blue for me.