A blog about my life, knitting, and other stuff.

February 16, 2005

Inner Voice

We have all an inner voice--call it instinct, intuition or something more spiritual. When I started the last pattern repeat of the Flower Basket Shawl my inner voice said, "I don't think you've got enough yarn to knit this repeat and the edging." And I though, "Shut up, little voice" and kept on knitting. Of course, I ran out of yarn. Here's the shawl as of this morning stretched on the back of a dining room chair.

Here's how much yarn is left.

Sad, no?

Here's how much yarn is left as of ten minutes ago.

I ripped out the previous 18 rows. At least I thought I did. I ended up missing by two rows and am now tinking back. For the big rip I took the whole shawl off the needles--again--and just ripped away.

Some other inner voice was at play this afternoon. My oldest son is home sick with the flu. I was sitting in my office knitting on my Broadripple sample for my class feeling more than a bit bored. Suddenly I hopped up grabbed some of the white mystery roving I got with my wheel and the two skeins of Coopworth I spun a while ago. I stuck them in a big bowl of water to soak. I pulled out my cake decorating supplies and put a half-teaspoon of Wilton paste cake decorating colors in paper cups, added hot water and vinegar. Then I laid out a plastic wrap covered jelly roll pan and got out my crockpot. I squeezed the excess water from the yarn and put it on the plastic wrap. I sprinkled cake colors all over the yarn and wrapped it up in the plastic, stuck it in a big glass bowl and put it in the microwave. I zapped it for three minutes three times. Meanwhile I put an oven bag in the crockpot, put the roving in and poured the remaining cake colors all over it. I added a little extra water and vinegar. I put the lid on the crockpot and put it on high. I pulled the yarn out of the microwave, unwrapped it and rinsed it in some hot water. I spun it out in my salad spinner and hung it up to dry. The whole process took about 45 minutes. I turned the flash off to make the colors a little more realistic so it's a bit fuzzy.

Two hours later I turned off the crockpot and let the roving sit for about an hour. Then I rinsed it, spun it out and hung it up too. It dried very quickly. It looks a bit like some sort of very poisonous snake here.

I don't know where this sudden impulse to dye came from. But I'm very pleased with the results. The roving is much darker because I used a lot more dye. It also has a lot more brown because the colors pooled and mixed. The Coopworth has surprisingly little brown to it. The colors came out great. I think I will try to knit a hat from the Coopworth. I'm looking forward to spinning the roving to see what I get.

As a bonus, here's my current progress on my Sockapalooza socks.