about the essentials of life...knitting, designing knitting, yarn for knitting...you get the idea...

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I'm a knitter, knitting pattern designer, and spinner. I also dye yarn with both acid and natural dyes.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Oh what a tangled web...

er, mess I make when I try to take a shortcut.
If you've been paying attention, you remember that I wanted to re-skein my sons's sister's yarn. Thinking it to be a 10 minute project, I started it this morning while waiting for the computer to load. I had originally skeined this yarn using the edge of my warping board. To mix the colors, I wanted a different diameter for my skein. I could have used the pegs on the warping board - that's what they're for, after all.
But no, I decided that would take too long. (Remember, Mercury's retrograde!) Way back when, in the olden days, I would use my arm to skein. So I thought I'd sit at the computer to prompt it when necessary and wind around my forearm.
Well, back in said olden days, I must have had a less stressful life. I tried to wind loosely, really I did. However, I ended up with my thumb completely stretched out, bent back almost to my hand. I can take it, I told myself. It's only for a couple of minutes more.
Not. I gave in to the pain and pulled that thing right off my hand. Ouch!
Okay, Plan B. I had about 2/3 of the original skein wound into another quite short skein. Well, back to the dining room chair method, I decided. The result:

Did you know you can't wind from both ends? The first end was buried somewhere in that short and now falling apart skein, so I started from the other end.
At first I wound around the chairs and was perplexed to discover that I was now winding 2 strands. Where did that come from?
Then I gave up and started trying to unwind from the chairs and make a ball. Not the finished product I desired.

Also not easily achieved. The tangles were growing exponentially. My patience was not.
I gave up.

I took the first short no longer a skein and went back to my office chair. They're pretty tangles, though, aren't they?

Finally, I came up with a untangled ball. I didn't want a ball. I wanted a skein. This is very soft yarn, and I've become quite absorbed in the shawl I'm knitting, so this is a not-right-now project. Before Christmas, yes, but not just right now. The ball I'd been able to make was not even a center pull - I'd needed both hands for the detangling, so there was tension on the yarn (not to mention me). To preserve accurate gauge, I needed a skein. Still.

Back to the dining room. This time I used all the chair peg thingies. And walked around and around the table. There would be no snarling!

If you look closely, you can even see the little clamp I used (on the left chair rung) to fasten off the starting end. Not taking any chances here.

Remember how when you were a kid you'd spin around and around until you fell over? Well, it works for walking around and around a table, too. But even I knew better than to reverse direction.
At long last, and I do mean looong last, I had this:

There was one final problem - the skein I'd wound was longer than my armspan, so I had quite a time of twisting it! Door knobs can come in handy, you know.

You know what? This is pretty much the color effect I had in mind when I set out to dye this yarn. Kind of watercolor -y, you know?
And yes, I have heard of a swift. I just don't have one, for complicated reasons having to do with marriage and all that. I keep hoping one will show up on some gift-giving occasion.
There's always Christmas! (hope, hope)


Blogger Askinstoo said...

Just Thought I'd Say Hi!!!!
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November 09, 2006 2:36 PM  
Blogger Scoutj said...

IT's so pretty!

And see that SPAM comment? You need to turn on word verification!

November 09, 2006 5:53 PM  

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