Wednesday, October 15, 2008

The Wrap That Ate South Dakota

I know that cotton yarn has a propensity to *grow*, that sweaters knit with all-cotton yarn tend get bigger and longer with each wearing, until they're popped in the wash to tighten back up again. Knitted cotton fabric stretches because, unlike wool, cotton yarn has no natural elasticity.

But usually, you have to wear the thing, or at least let Gravity do her dirty work, for the effect to take place.

However, the first end of my cotton lace wrap (table runner/whatever), which measured 22 1/2" long when I put it on a stitch holder, was plopped unceremoniously on the plastic kiddie chair that doubles as a knitting book storage/project shelf/footstool. It wasn't hanging over the edge, stretched out, or in any way subject to the pull of the Earth's surface, except in that it didn't float away. And yet, when I finished the second end of the wrap (tr/w), and measured them against each other, the first end clocked in at 25". It sat there, mostly ignored, certainly not worn, or even artfully draped, and grew. Who knows how long it'll be when it finally reaches maturity?

So, I'm done with the 2 ends of the w (tr/w) and am working on the long center lace section. Given that this yarn shrinks in the wash (and I'll have to boil it to bring out the organic, natural green color), but grows when no one is looking at it, I am going to call it a wash and just make sure that the 2 pieces, when joined, measure 72". That way, after shrinkage, and growage, and blockage, it'll still be somewhere near 72" long, which is what I want it to be.

Unexpected sizing issues aside, I love how this is coming out.

I also finished another handspun, ribbed Christmas hat for the pile. And did I show you all the finished November 28 Lace Scarf (made with 1 skein of Malabrigo Worsted?). It'll be this week's Freebie Friday pattern.

I was going to knit today, but I have some sock book editing work to do, and my copy of Dennis Lehane's (Mystic River, Gone Baby Gone, Shutter Island, and many more wonderful books) The Given Day arrived. I've been waiting for this book for a long time (he talked about it in '02, when he was the Guest of Honor and I was Toastmaster of Honor at the annual Mayhem in the Midlands Mystery Conference, held in Omaha, NE). I think, when I finish book work, I'll read instead.


tundratantrum said...

I think I just found you a whole village or two or three full of arctic relatives!

Brianne said...

I just read your blog for the first time. I hope you enjoy the GIVEN DAY by Lehane. I actually work with Lehane on this new book. And I’m a big fan of it (even before I started working with Dennis). Would you be willing to add this link to your post? The link let’s your fans read a chunk of THE GIVEN DAY online. It’s pretty cool.