Knitting with Two Strands

I stumbled upon one really cute Rowan jumper pattern. I rarely found a jumper pattern which have a wide neckline like this one. But there are two problems with this particular pattern: 1. I don’t have rowan yarns — they are waaaay out of my budget. 2. The pattern calls for that yarn to be used “double”.

Now… I know that it is not unusual thing, but I have never knit with two yarns at the same time. I mean, I know how to use it interchangeably while doing colourwork, but it is not the same though.

I remembered when I was young my mum used double yarn to crochet, and I tried it too and it is just the same. I thought… maybe it is the same with knitting. After all, I have done a project with this yarn… which is basically two yarn twisted together. And I quite like the result.

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However… Back to the jumper I would like to make. I don’t have the yarn which has the gauge mentioned in the pattern. It was either too short or too long, or too narrow or to wide. Then I thought, maybe it is the fact that the yarn was doubled so it created a unique gauge. I guessed that if I could find a yarn thin enough to bulk up the 4ply yarn I had, I could make up the correct gauge asked in the pattern.

So I browse my stash and found this… thing that I swore I would never touch again.

Now… some background story.

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Long time ago, I bought lots of yarn from iceyarn. Being a noob, I thought because it looks pretty, it will make pretty stuff. This particular yarn, for example… in paper it would make a wonderful garment. As the strand is thicker in one place and thinner in another, it would automatically give a pattern while I knit it in stst.

In reality… not so much. I made a rectangular shawl with it, and it looked hideous. Not mentioning that it is horrible to knit with.

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So the remainder of the yarn was in my stash… Not sure why I haven’t donated it already. Maybe the good side of me though I should never put anyone else through the misery I had with this yarn.

Ah… anyway.

I started my experiment. Making swatch this time was a bit more interesting than usual as both yarns kept tangling every now and then. However I have to say that it does make a nice freckle pattern in a stst, and I can imagine it would look really pretty in a jumper.

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I did have to change the needle to 0.25 mm smaller, but in the end the gauge was bang on. Ha! Looks like we have another WIP on.

x ❤ x

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Do You Make Swatch?

Like blocking, I have heard about making swatch since ages ago, but haven’t been really good at doing it. I think making swatch is boring, and I was usually so excited about going on a project — probably the reasons why I never got into making swatch at all.

I know that like blocking, it is very important to make your knitting project easier, and better. But since I am lazy, and am only interested in the knitting and making up pretty stuff, I usually skip this part and only refer to the gauge information in the yarn label.

But what if the yarn doesn’t have gauge information in its label? Like this one, for example… The yarn looks pretty, and is incredibly soft and would definitely make lovely project, but without knowing the gauge, it would be impossible to use it on a project.

So, I make a swatch. Counting the stitches is always the worst part… I don’t know how many people actually make swatch and count gauge before starting a project. I think those who are faithful, and not skipping this step deserve so much respect. I don’t know how you fight boredom while doing it…

Do you make swatch?