Thursday, June 28, 2007

It's MINE! ALL MINE!!!! (insert evil laugh here)

(And Nora's question answered, but after I gush)It's Belle. And Gail made it Belle-acious. And it's MINE! All six skeins!! I am calling it chocolate berry mousse. And I know EXACTLY what I am going to do with it, but more on that later. Katy knows. For now, feast your eyes on it's loveliness. Bask in the silken glow. Is not it...heavenly?? I loved this yarn the first time I saw it at NENA in 2006. Then it came in as a close-out and I bought a bag of a mushroom color (9035) to over dye with Gail's help. And I shall. But in the meantime, fate stepped in (when it comes to yarn all for ME fate's name is usually Kathy) and dealt me a delightful hand to play. I get...YARN!!!!YARN YARN YARN!! Now, given my position in life one would assume that I don't have much room for yarn. This is not the case. Truth be told I design a garment, knit it up, and the yarn in garment form leave me. Even if it's not for the store I have to preserve it as the original garment. It isn't worn. It sits in a box and rests, and waits patiently for exposure on a pattern page. But this?? IT'S MINE!! Anyone coming to Manchester in July, or visiting the store, it can be yours as well - though maybe not this exact colorway since I bought it all. ALL! MINE!! HAHAHAHAHAAA! (sorry.) The others are equally yummy, in fact amazing. I actually saw this yarn last Thursday and knew it was mine but I did not have the wherewithal to bring it home. When I walked into the store and saw it, was fait accompli. I LOVE GAIL! I LOVE WEBS!! I...I...maybe need a little rest period now.
Deep breath...OK. I feel better now. Girl bought me a single skein of Alchemy Bamboo - I love Girl - and it took me a few days to decide what to do with it. Erin and Cirilia both suggested Knit and Tonic's Dream Swatch Headwrap. It seemed a reasonable plan, so I downloaded. And downloaded. And downloaded some more. Then after what seemed eons of patiently watching the progress bar (I so love dial-up) I attempted to open the file. It alleged corruption and irreparable damage. So I deleted it and downloaded it again, assuming of course that the issue was my pathetic Internet connection. The second file also failed to open. This I took as a sign. So I swatched. Now I have an orange snake. I suspect it will appear here in a very different form, blocked and beautiful - stay tuned. It's on US 4's, and one skein has been perfect to go round my head and be tied.
Today is all about finishing up the Colrain jacket - finished picture in next post. Nora posted a comment about Colrain and I'll try to answer her questions. Colrain does retain most of the elastic qualities of a wool yarn, but with the added shine and drape of the tencel. The tencel takes the dye very differently than the wool and it gives the yarn a luminous quality that you can really best appreciate in person. It's a 'best of both worlds' scenario. I'd wear it as a grub-around weekend pullover just as quickly as I'd use it for the dressier cabled jacket. (No, they don't pay us for talking nice about the yarn. And I'll be honest - if there is a yarn I am not thrilled with, you'll know.) Sizing a pattern depends on yarn and garment style. For my purposes I'll assume you're considering Colrain for a typical average garment. Using the finished measurements of the pattern, and assuming you get gauge, Colrain is not a yarn where you're going to see the endless stretch we often associate with tencel, rayon, silk, cotton, etc. I would lean toward choosing the size that's right for you - 2-4 inches larger than your actual bust measurement for the average garment. If you're ever unsure about any yarn, swatch excessively first. Use a whole ball, make two or three. Wash them, spin them nearly dry in a salad spinner or washer and if you're worried about stretch, hang one up to dry along the cast-on edge rather than lying flat; hang another one in the opposite direction (along the row edge). This simulates a few long wearings. Playing with swatches before knitting a garment can save a world of woe later on. Think about simulating actual wearing conditions.
Photographic woes abound here. I have three - nay, four patterns ready for publication but we cannot get decent pictures. The camera appears to be focusing on some distant object rathat than that which is in the center of the frame. What I need is my own personal photographer. Or at least someone with a camera that has not been dropped from the backpack in the middle of the Magic Kingdom. I think her days may be drawing nigh. I think I need one camera for "real" pictures and one for traveling. I also have a tiny cheap thing that takes awful pics but it weighs so much less and fits in my purse. My kingdom for a photographer. And a sweater model. Sigh.
I taped again with Kathy and Steve for Saturday's Ready Set Knit. It can be heard on WHMP Saturday morning at 9am, or downloaded if you who don't live on a dead end road in Western Massachusetts where Verizon and Comcast fear to tread with anything bigger than a simple phone line. Download time for a podcast here is 3 hours. This is fun, this radio thing is. Probably I could easily be distracted into this as a career path if one presented itself. Gratefully I don't have the voice for it (phew!). Because I live in a location that appears to be the fifth level of hell, I cannot receive AM signals in my house. Instead, I ran to my car barefoot and in jammies as the show was starting and sat and listened to myself mumble and Ummmm my way through two of the four minutes pf my very first radio appearance. I hope I improved with experience. It was longer this time, so my poor father will not have to download 30 minutes of "knitting stuff" for four minutes of his daughter saying "ummm" a lot. There I sat in my car on Saturday morning, knitting and listening. Mr Wonderful appeared and wanted to listen too, but also wanted to go to the dump (What is it about men and the dump?). So I moved into his car without fully remembering that I was in my jammies and barefoot and had not brushed my hair. Off we went to the transfer station and then on a brief drive through the woods. Luckily we live in a part of the world (this may be the only benefit of living here - the roads are awful, I can't get a radio signal, TV antennae don't work, and Verizon does not love me enough to put in high speed - I'll save the Comcast story for another day) where appearing in public in curlers and a head scarf is still not considered abnormal - jammies and unbrushed hair don't stand out. So if anyone needs me Saturday morning, I'll be in the car - although perhaps coiffed and garbed this time.


Yarnhog said...

Great post! Entertaining and useful--and a little more maliciously gleeful than absolutely necessary. Just the way I like it. I'll just overlook the bit about swatching and continue living in denial.

Kristi said...

For some reason the Belle is making me hungry for cake--chocolate cake with raspberry sauce, in fact. Beautiful!

I concur with yarnhog--I prefer to live in denial about swatching, except when in class, of course. :)

nora said...

Thanks so much for the info on Colrain. All I have to do is decide which color. They're all so lovely. Nora