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It All Started Out So Well.

19 May 2010

Tea Leaves Cardigan

About ten days ago, I was inspired by Lynn’s photo of homemade strawberry ice cream — and its similarity to the colorway I’ve been using for my Tea Leaves Cardigan.

I asked Lynn how she gets the gorgeous food shots she has on her blog. “I just do extreme close-ups,” she said, as if a zoom lens is all one needs for greatness. So – I tried that (with more and less success), then continued happily with the sweater.

I am not going to post photos of what happened. No; it is too fresh in my mind, too much of Greek Tragedy as yet. Perhaps later, when we have all had time to heal, when spring has brought forth new yarn, when other projects have reminded us we are not complete failures as knitters – then we can look back on this project and see it merely as a bump in the road to next year’s wooly garments. For now, it must lie fallow, or – to put it another way – in the bottom of my knitting bag, banished with just half a sleeve and the button band left to go.

In a word, I took a shortcut. When one is knitting with hand-dyed yarn, one should knit with two skeins, in alternating rows. This is so that any color differences in the skeins are evened out. I know this. I have known this for a long time. I have been burned by color difference before. The yarnista at fibre space reminded me of this. “Yes, I know,” I said blithely, fondling my new yarn.

I had no reason to ignore personal precedent and expert advice. Nevertheless, I did just that.

I am now paying the price: most of the sweater looks like this photo, pale pink with some darker bits. One freaking skein had fewer darker bits than the rest, so from about my natural waist to the hem the sweater is a bit paler. My darling Tuesday night beginners’ class told me they couldn’t see it; my glorious knitting friend said she couldn’t see it; but I can see it…and so could Veronica. [I’m not sure I have the heart to show Danielle.]

So…we’ll let this one stew for a while. Maybe my eyes will get worse in the meantime and I won’t notice the difference.

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