Monday, October 02, 2006

Screen Test for Spider Queen (Not all yarn is created equal)

Cashmere is really soft, really pretty. However, not all cashmere is created equal. I'm ready for my close-up Mr. De Mille. I went ahead and swatched the center panel of "Spider Queen". The white yarn is 100% cashmere knit on US 3 (this is what the pattern asks for for Spider Queen). I purchased it as singles from ColourMartUK on E-bay and plied it myself. The black background is the unwashed pin-out. The mill end cashmere has "oil" on it to facilitate its use in manufacturing and it has to be washed in order to "bloom". The blue background is the cashmere swatch washed out. It's much more fluffy and gives the knitting a more substantial (read not ethereal) look. While very very lovely against the skin, it is not going to make it as Spider Queen. Not when the "legend" attached to this shawl is all about how fine a thread that darned Fairy could spin! The blue Shetland Fern swatch is the 65% cashmere and 35% silk yarn. Also from ColourMartUK, knit on US 2. Pretty, a little fluffy but still light and airy. I'd have a smaller shawl (I didn't like this one on US 3) and it is not as soft to the touch. I have a few other yarns to look at before I have to decide. I'm not done with any of the other shawls yet so I have time.

Must go knit a man's scarf now.


Opal said...

I loved seeing the bloom of the cashmere. Good luck on your search for the Spider Queen's yarn!

alice said...

You haven't gotten enough of ethereal with WRS? :)

Jane said...

Dear Opal,

It's a nice yarn and very soft but really not fine enough. Maybe I'll make a scarf out of this stuff. I will swatch the blue Cashmere/Silk in Spider Queen next and see if it works out better.

Jane said...

Dear Alice,

WRS will take a long time to knit. I don't think Spider Queen is as difficult somehow and It might give me some of that instant gratification I need to keep at the knitting:) Still, I'm only swatching right now, so we will see how irritating doing two shawls with small yarn will be.