Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Decisions, decisions....

This is going to be a very link heavy post....get ready.

As usual, I'm having a hard time making up my mind when it comes to yarn. No big shock, here. I've got three projects lining up in the queue and I'm trying to get yarn in for them. I'm going to break them down with some links to possible yarn, and any input on the yarn, or the pattern, or whatever, would totally be appreciated.

1. Silk Camisole from Last Minute Knitted Gifts

The specs: The yarn calls for is Fiesta Yarns La Luz, which is lovely, but very expensive and dry clean only. These are two things that just don't work for me. I don't to go and knit something that I won't wear because I don't want to clean it. That, and if you get silk wet, not even in washing it, it gets dull spots. I'm just too messy for that.

Yardage: 840 yards
Gauge: 24sts x 26 rows = 4" on US 7. 6 sts per inch. Basically sportweight.
Yarns I'm looking into:
Knitpicks Shine - My issue here is that the only color I really like for this knit is not going to be in until the end of Feb. Boo, I say, boo.
Dale of Norway Svale - I like Dale yarns. I felt some Baby Ull this weekend and it is superb. I already have Stork, which I bitched and moaned about. I take that all back. This looks like a good deal, but I was hoping for a dark blue. The lavender is nice, though.
Plymouth DK Wildflower - Great palette(I like the Ocean color), great price, seems all good. Just not sure how I feel about the acrylic. I have a tendency to be allergic to acrylic. Having said that, I'm mostly allergic to it around my neck. This tank top is no where around your neck.
Reynolds Saucy Sport - Love the Pine color, but I'm worried about mercerized cotton. Talk about no stretch. Hard on the fingers and I'm worried about it being form fitting enough.

2. Bad Penny from Knitty

This is sort of my alternative to the silk camisole as a first garment. Basically, if I can't come up with a yarn that I'm sure about, I'll do this pattern in the mean time, and do the camisole while I await the River color to come into Knit Picks. (As I side note, I know that I'm doing my garments ass backwards based on the seasons of the mid-atlantic, however, they are going well with my learning of knitting. I'm trying to not put the cart before the horse like I usually do).
Anyhow, I've heard some good things about this pattern, and it looks like something that would fit me well. The thing is that if it's going to be short sleeved, it can't have any wool in it, or I can't wear it. Also, I worry about it being out of Alpaca, because that would be too warm, and all cotton would make for shaping issues, just like the tank top. Are we seeing a problem here?

Yardage: 721 yards - 437 of the MC and 284 of the CC
Gauge: 20 sts for 32 rows = 4" 5 sts an inch. US 7 needles. Worsted Weight
Cascade Pima Melange - Pretty colors, but none of them are varigated. I like the two color thing that Stefanie does, but I'd be happy to have two different solid colors instead. I am worried about the 100% cotton thing.
Cascade Pima Tencel - A good option, but no variegation.
Feza Cekor - This is a bit of a long shot, but it looks like it would be interesting to try. It meets a bunch of the criteria, but it's a little out there.
Needful Yarns Kim - Looks like a good option, especially because there's also Kelly, and they go together. I basically get my cake and eat it too. I'm only slightly worried about the acrylic, but this is shaping up to be a good option.
Reynolds Saucy - Nice colors, but no variegation. 100% cotton.
Valley Yarns Longmeadow - This looks a nice option, just no varigation.

3. Hourglass Sweater from Last Minute Knitted Gifts (don't make me link it again)

There is a whole KAL devoted to this, so you would think I wouldn't have a problem figuring this out by myself, but I do. As usual

Yardage: 1100 yards. Ofcourse that's what the pattern says. However, Purlsoho has a note stating that many people have run out of yarn based on the pattern specs. This leads me to believe that I should order more like 1300 yards or so.
I'm also hoping for a slightly varigated yarn, more like the kettle dyed look, really. I just want something to add a little interest to the look.
Gauge: 19 sts x 28 rows = 4" 4.75 sts an inch. US 7 needles. Worsted weight.
Brown Sheep Worsted - Lots of colors, big hanks, good price. There's even a little bit of variegation in there. I'm just a little worried about the fussiness of the mohair. Not much, just a little.
Cascade 220 - I have an affinity for this yarn. I am worried though, because it has an icky tendency to grow once it's blocked. I'm not sure I want to deal with that, but you can't beat the color selection. It is a little scratchier wool than I was hoping for.
Classic Elite Four Seasons Cotton - A good option, but I'd have to buy 15 or more balls, which gets pricey. The yardage is a little stingy. Not sure how I feel about this much cotton.
Dale Freestyle - It's Dale, it's cheap, it's got a good color range. Just no variegation.
Elisabeth Lavold Cable Cotton - 100% cotton, but it's heavier. I've seen this in person and it is nice, but there's no variegation, and it's stingy yardage. Just no cling-ness about it, though.
Plymouth Encore - Like the colors, but I'm not sure how I feel about that much acrylic.
Plymouth Suri Merino - This looks like a pretty good deal. I like the colors. I'm also fond of Alpaca/Merino blends.
Dale Sisik - It's Dale, it's tweedy, it's an otpion. I'm pretty sure I like that first color, I just fear that's a little yellowish. I do not look good in yellowish browns.
Elann Peruvian Collection Pure Alpaca - This looks like a good option. I like the Heathery brown, it's alpaca, which I love, and it doesn't look too delicate. I'd need a truckload of balls, but at least it's a great price.

Okay, that's it. I'm sorry for so many options, but I'm just one of those people that has to explore everything that once. If you've used any of these yarns or doen any of these patterns and have anything good or bad to say, I'd LOVE to hear about it. In the meantime I have a lot of deliberating to do. However, I'd better hurry. My plan is to do the cami or Bad Penny for Stephanie's KAL which is coming up really fast. I have to order soon for at least one of those options. Eek!


  • Hmmm...I'm a little overwhelmed I must say. The patterns are all pretty different. The only yarn I've used that you've listed is Plymouth Encore (James' gray/red ribbed sweater). It's a nice yarn, a little scratchy (but no more than Cascade 220 I would say). It was easy to knit with and did great with the machine wash (I just let it dry flat).

    I think I'll have to talk to you on the phone about these, it's just too much, eek!

    By Blogger Heather, at 7:11 PM  

  • I'm overhelmed too!

    I'll say this...high quality acrylic blended with cotton is a GOOD thing (and I'm a total yarn snob!)It lightens the cotton so a tank doesnt weigh 20 pounds!
    High quality cotton blends like Rowan All Season's Cotton and Calmer are a dream to knit with and keep thier shape without being heavy. Kim/Kelly are very nice cotton acrylic blends too. Lastly, Shine is one of my favorite yarns, sooo nice to knit with and so pretty (and cheap!)
    So I don't know how this helps with your myriad choices/decisions but pure cotton - BAD high end acrylic and cotton -VERY GOOD!

    By Blogger Debi, at 2:53 AM  

  • Wow you have your stuff together....I haven't used any of the yarns pointed out, I think....but if the gauge works Classic Elite yarns Premiere is GREAT! very soft, no wool,....has a 50/50 cotton/Tencel blend.

    By Blogger traveling knitter, at 1:49 PM  

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