Tuesday, September 04, 2007

In the studio

Shawl, mixed fibers: cotton, wool, nylon, acrylic, silk, alpaca; linen stitch, size 13 wood needles.

I know I often show these mixed fiber fabrics and never show the separate yarns. So here's the mix of yarns, lined up in the background.

A year or so ago my friend Elizabeth [also a fabulous knitter] gave me the furry yarn in the middle of this lineup and said she found it a bit too challenging and asked me if I wanted to try to do something with it. Although I said sure, I also felt it looked very challenging because the colors seemed odd. They go from acqua to periwinkle to gray. But even though I had rejected it for several projects over the months, when I started to get yarns together for this project, it was perfect. So this is a case in point of how mixing yarns to compose a fabric somehow gives each yarn a new personality.

For this project I decided to go ahead and wind up balls of the yarn segments rather than cutting each segment as needed, which is what I often do. It has improved the mobility of the project. Often when I'm knitting with that many yarns it's aggravating to have to pack up and unpack the yarns, get them all untangled, get them set up in a usable order, and so on. With everything pre cut and knotted into one continuous strand, the knitting also goes on more routinely and without the pauses to cut and tie knots.

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