Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Gotta Send a Care Package (fleegle in Japan)

Fleegle is in Japan at the moment and is swatching for the Princess Shawl from Sharon Miller's Heirloom Lace site. We are among the many on the waiting list for that pattern which is supposed to come out as a re-issue in Nov. 2007. I check in on her blog a lot and she was really wanting to swatch in some yarns that she does not have with her in Japan at the moment. I will be sending a small care package with some samples of yarn for her to swatch with (gotta go back to Yarn Place, not exactly torture if you know what I mean). In the mean time, here are some of those yarns that I swatched. I steamed-blocked, not washed so the ones from ColourMartUK still have the "manufacturing oil" on them and are not as fluffy as they will be in the end.
At the top you have the gratuitous shot of a dime for scale and strands of the different yarns. Then you have the "Group Photo" of all the swatches I made tonight after reading fleegles post. Then I have pairs of swatches which I will now give information on. All the samples except for the very small swatch at the end were knit on US 0 needles. The smallest was knit on 1.5 mm.The nice green swatch is A ColourMartUK yarn 50/50 cashmere silk, 3/84 NM . The Lavender is "Heaven" from Yarn Place, 45/55 Tencel and Merino Wool (120 grams or 4.2 Oz equals 3,100 yards). The Burgundy swatch is another ColourMartUK yarn 65/35 Cashmere Silk at 2/60 NM, The Pale blue/green is also ColourMartUK and is 100% Cashmere 2/32 NM and I confess, it feels sinfully soft even before washing out the oil, but I don't know if it will do for the Princess Shawl as it is more substantial than other samples I have on this page.
The last two samples look "white" but are really ecru. The top, and larger sample is 65/35 SWT wool and Silk (50g/1,300 yds) and I "think" I got that at Skaska Designs when I went to Stitches West 2007. The smallest sample is silk yarn I also bought at Skaska Designs (100 gms/6040 yds 120/2)
Now for the knitting.
Casting On- Much suckage to cast on with all but the pale green/blue 100% Cashmere. That first row is a doozy but I hope Princess does not need a lot of that. The worst was, of course, the silk
Casting off- Worst one was the 100% Silk. So tiny, so slippery, so annoying. All the others were OK.
Shine- Almost all the color yarns have nice shine except for the 100% Cashmere in green/blue but that yarn has it's own virtues to make up for the lack of shine.
Of the ecru yarns the silk really has shine, the SWT/Silk, not so much
Softness- the SWT/Silk is "OK" but not a treat to hold. The Cashmere is drool worthy for softness, the other ColourMartUK yarns also fairly nice and soft. The silk is "crispy" rather than soft with that characteristic kind of "sticky" feel or "drag" to the yarn. The Tencel/Merino is almost a little "slick" but very pleasant.
Definition- Good stitch definition on all but the 100% Cashmere. Crisp, it is not.
Splitting- I only had problems with the 100% pale green/blue Cashmere splitting a little.
Though I will have to decide what to use for my own Princess Shawl, I already know I have to make it in White. WRS is for Jessica, the Princess is for Shelby. Sisters. So, both in White. Less chance of "unrest" if you catch my drift. Check out fleegle's blog to see what she has already swatched in Japan.
Enjoy guys! I got to go finish my book!


fleegle said...

Have I started a fad, or what? Is everybody swatching for Princess? I am hoping the Angel will work. It is so soft and the colors are lovely. But then, I haven't tried the ColourMart Cashmere.

I had to go buy some more pins today. I didn't have quite enough to block properly. I am now prepared for the care package. Send steak, too! And cheese! Just kidding.

I think I have some of that dark red ColourMart cash/silk home. I didn't care for it a year ago--like knitting string. But maybe I can deal with it now. The color is lovely.

Which one did you like the best? You didn't really say.

Laritza said...

hummm Princess has been in the back of my mind since last year when I realized it would be reprinted this year. Of course I am on the waiting list too. In that regard I have stashed a couple of options. One is Galena's cashmere/silk and the other one 60/2 silk in a cone from Webs. This one is very similar (if not identical) to the one that Sharon sells. The question is: how many yards does Princess call for? There is yet another option, a Shetland lamb fleece I have around here somewhere but I don't think it would be enough if the shawl is anywhere close to the size of the WRS. What about cotton? DMC size 100 would be lovely if I could find it in cones. I have some in balls but I doubt I would have enough. Oh! the other one is linen from Webs that is 40/2 linen, lovely stuff......

missalicefaye said...

I love them all--except I think that knitting with the tiny pure silk would drive me crazy, personally. :) I'm so impressed that you and Fleegle are planning so far in advance of the pattern's actual re-release! You're doing all of my work for me. :)

Opal said...

Beautiful swatches! And Fleegle is lucky to have such a good friend in you to assuage the lack of laceweight yarn in her vicinity. :-)

Jane said...

Dear fleegle,

I shall seek out your yarn sacrifices to the Swatch God and once I have the assorted Virgins, I shall be sending them to you post haste. I think Yarn Place lost everyone's E-Mail addresses the the death throes of their Shop Site. I just call them on the phone! As for which yarn I prefer, it's like picking a favorite child. Unfair, unfair she cried! It depends on what I'm knitting and while the swatches were fun, I think I will pull out the trusty ColourMartUK Cashmere/Silk in White when it comes down to it. No single's like I'm doing now. Too difficult. I was impressed by the Heaven though, could get it in white, then there's that cone of linen.....

Jane said...

Dear laritza,

On the Heirloom Knitting site, the Original pattern requirement asks for 13x20 grams of DMC Crochet Cotton #70. There are 330m in each 20 grams of the crochet cotton. 13x330m=4,290m. Ouch. Buy PLENTY of yarn for this sucker! This is really going to cost us fellow knitters! Excuse me while I go look again at my stash of white yarns.Hmmmm.

Jane said...

Dear missalicefaye,

I was just having a hot-flash so I swatched. Actually, until fleegle went off on a tear I was content to just knit my projects. I can't get really serious until I FINISH the WRS. A 3 day holiday is coming so I will have some uninterrupted time to knit on her. We have lots of time yet (Hah!). I really don't know what I will do with that tiny silk. It's really difficult to knit with. I think I will take the silk sample I got from Sharon Miller that came with the WRS and actually try that as a swatch. I never tried it so maybe I would like it better? Just made of time over here! Thank you for checking in on my crazy self.

Jane said...

Dear Opal,

Hate to see a fellow lace knitter suffer. How well I know the agony of not having what you need to swatch or knit! If you ever get stuck in the same manner, just shout out. We will help you too! Good to hear from you as usual! Hope you and all your family/pets are well.

Knit Picking said...

I love the swatches, and the pattern is divine! Fleegle is fortunate to have a good friend like you. It will be exciting to check the progress on both your Princess shawls, and see your yarn selection.

Jane said...

Dear knit picking,

I don't know what it is, but there are just times that you want to swatch what's in the old stash. It helps to inspire me for future projects. I'm glad you like the pattern. I think that those of use planning to attempt the Princess Shawl must be loco in the extreme. Thanks for checking in!

Mozilla said...

Thank you for all the lovely swatches. I am new to your blog and stumbled upon it when looking for approriate lace for a wedding shawl. I would like to make a slightly larger swallowtail for a friend but would like to get a wedding white lace or fingering weight yarn, that will not break the bank. I was looking through your flickr and saw the Yarn Place Heaven in white. Is that wedding white or a yellowy white? I also have the Yarn Place Graceful and think it is wonderful. Still have to decide what to use it for. Anyway I hope you can help me with the white yarn dilemma so that I can get started


Jane said...

Dear mozilla,

Welcome to reading this blog! I have some of the Heaven in white and it is pretty darned white. I will go find it and post a picture along with a sheet of typing paper in white for you to compare. As for the swatches, you can thank fleegle who infected me with the swatching bug when she started swatching on on her blog while in Japan. I'm visiting family today but will post a picture either late tonight or tomorrow of the Heaven.

fleegle said...

I revisited your swatch of Heaven tonight and noticed you are writing a book! What book, if I may be so nosy?

I haven't gotten to the post office yet, but I promise this week I will get tehre.

Jane said...

Dear fleegle,

I'm not writing a book. Spindyeknit has written a book on lace that is to be published soon, is that the one you are thinking of? I have not sent you your package yet. I will be sending it this week as the 3 day holiday has interrupted me!