Thursday, November 29, 2007

Before and After

Ross learned how to knit at Lisa Diane's New Year's party and I got into it too (he said I had to get my own needles and quit playing with his). I'm not thrilled about the price of yarn and had read about yarn recycling on the Internet. I found a knitting pattern that I wanted to try and it required like 9 skeins of yarn or something. I decided to try and find a sweater to recycle. This is a Banana Republic 100% wool sweater that I bought at Goodwill for 3.99 + tax. I took this photo 1/29/2007. Ross thought that the recycling was a dumb idea, but he sure had fun unravelling the sweater. Bailey thought it was a game and wanted to play too.

As we unravelled the sweater I wound it up into balls, which I then wound into hanks. The yarn was kind of kinky and had to be washed. When wet it looked like ramen noodles. I hung the hanks up in the guest room to dry. It looked and smelled a little funny.

When they were all dry I wound them up into balls again. I weighed the yarn and got just over 600 grams. A lot of yarn is sold in 50 gram balls for about 5 dollars a ball (conservatively speaking), so I figured I'd gotten a pretty good deal. I got all the yarn ready in just a few days. The worst part was going from the dry hanks back to balls. We had one hank that we worked on for at least an hour because it got knotted up. Rolling it into balls in the first place (instead of just hanks) seemed like a waste, so on the next sweater I just wrapped the yarn into hanks.

So I think sometime In February I started using the yarn to make a shawl. I modified the pattern. Instead of just regular stockinette stitch I decided to try seed stitch. Also, I decided to start with the longest row (410 stitches) and decrease instead of starting with two stitches and increasing. I worked on the shawl off and on throughout the Spring. At some point it got shoved in the closet and I didn't touch it for quite a while. I think in September or October I was determined to get to the 100 row mark. I figured it would really be downhill from there. I took the shawl to Italy with us and knitted on the plane and on the train. I got quite a bit done. I was even envisioning finishing it by the end of November because I could knit on the plane to El Paso for Thanksgiving. I didn't knit again until that trip (I was too busy baking). When I got home I had something like 170 rows completed. The rest was a breeze and I finished it yesterday. I just washed it and it's lying flat on the bed to dry. Its huge! It's also nice and soft. I think its not a bad transformation, and I think 4 dollars was a deal!

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