Friday, January 18, 2013

Style or Substance

I've got a variety of stockinette based knitting going on right now, with plans for another one as soon as the yarn gets here. I suppose it was to be expected that I would break out in another direction entirely, and soon, just to maintain my balance.

I don't think it's working. The pattern, the Surprise Hat and Cowl from Cinzia Knits, is easy to memorize and fun to knit.  The yarn is Mirasol's Tufa, a 50% merino and 50% silk blend, so it's soft and shimmery.  The combination should have been a no-brainer, except I got, I don't know, lazy? hurried? fixated on instant gratification (and if that's what I wanted why didn't I just go shopping? What made me think any of those things were compatible with sticks and string?)?  I decided that since one of the options for the matching hat involved bulky yarn, I could double-strand my DK weight yarn for the cowl, and then it would knit up fast.  Seeing it typed up here makes it look really idiotish.  Did I really think I could do that and not end up with a piece that was so rigid it could stand (literally) against gale-force winds?  Maybe I should blog before I knit.

It looks pretty, I know, but it feels like - I don't know what.  Heavy. Stiff. Clunky. All the things merino and silk should not feel like. 

On the Princess' advice, I slipped the stitches off my needle and sent the project off to wet block.  She pointed out that sometimes wet-blocking a piece, especially a piece with lots of decreases and yarn-overs, transforms the knitting in unexpected ways.  Not this time. It looks exactly like I expected it, but doesn't feel any better than it did while still on the needles.  All right, so it's still damp and so it may be too soon to tell.  I've gone this far and will wait until the knitting has dried before I rip it all out, but I think the yarn and the pattern deserve better. Substance is not synonymous with substantial. 

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