Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Cursed Yarn?

I love yarn. I love yarn in any way, shape or form... yarn, roving, fleece, dyed, un-dyed, pretty much anything. I love to spin yarn, knit yarn, crochet and sometimes even weave yarn. In my vast yarn experience I have stumbled upon a phenomenon that is known only to fiber addicts like me: cursed yarn. This has only ever happened to me a few times, but when it does I am so thoroughly disgusted with having tried and failed so many projects that I stick the yarn in a bag and throw it in the pile for another day (usually never to be seen again).

This time it takes the form of Plymouth Encore Colorspun in a colorway that is so perfect for a baby gift you can't even imagine anything else made with it. The first time I saw the yarn being knitted it was being made into a sweater at the Saturday morning group I used to attend. Even when the project was done I couldn't ever accept it as a sweater because the gentle color changes of white, yellow and blue just looked so babyish that it didn't look right on a grown woman. Of course I bought a few skeins right away, but I had the dilemma of not having a baby to knit for. I was so much itching to make something for a baby with this yarn that I was tempted to make a project and put it away until the gift giving opportunity presented itself. My boys are teenagers and my daughter is 6 and there definitely will be no more babies in my future. After about a month I was in luck because I found out that two people at work were expecting. Great! I immediately bought more and started on two baby blankets.

Blanket #1:

The first thing that came to mind was the diagonal baby blanket done in garter stitch. It was easy, fast & I was teaching my mom to knit so it was the perfect thing for us to do together. Mine took about a month. Being the A.D.D. knitter I was also working on several other projects at the time as well. If I were a monogamous knitter it would have taken me about a week or week and a half. My mom's took about 6 months and several sessions of my warning her that I was on the verge of strangling her with the yarn if she kept ignoring what I had taught her.

I finished the knitting and then went to the fabric store and bought some matching flannel backing fabric to sew on. It was perfect because the flannel matched the colors and also matched her jungle baby theme. For some reason I kept putting off sewing the backing fabric on and ended up putting the whole thing aside until the baby was about 4 months old. By then she was back to work and asked me about knitting some matching scarves for her Christmas card pictures. I told her that I had just come across the blanket I made for the baby and would be sure to finish it that night and bring it the next day. On my way home I felt great about the fact that I was going to finally finish the blanket and get the guilt of not giving her the practically finished gift off my mind. When I walked into my bedroom my daughter was sitting on my bed and gave me a very sweet greeting. As I hugged her I noticed that the blanket was on my bed and thought to myself how funny it would turn up on the exact day I was coming home to finish it.

Then I saw it... out of the corner of my eye... something didn't look quite right... are those live stitches on a finished project?... what the... is that blanket?!... No!! It couldn't be!!! OMG!! She cut the finished baby blanket into several smaller pieces!!! I was so upset and so crushed that I made my husband go in the bedroom and clean up the pieces to be thrown away immediately so that I never had to see them again. My daughter had never done anything like this before. See? Cursed yarn.

A few weeks later another person in that department announced that she was trying to get pregnant. I was thrilled with the knitting possibilities. I waited patiently until a little later when she announced that she was actually pregnant. Then I went on Ravelry and filled my queue with all kinds of baby projects. Coincidentally I found blanket #2 started with this yarn.

Blanket #2

During the craze over the pinwheel sweaters on I started about 4 pinwheel projects. One of them was a baby blanket made with the same cursed yarn. I really liked the way the project was turning out and am not quite sure why I laid it aside (maybe in the back of my mind I knew it was cursed yarn) but anyway, it was laid aside. I found the yarn a week or so before the project was found and I started a lizard ridge baby blanket with it.
That one got frogged because the color transitions in the yarn were so subtle that the pattern was lost. The next try was a cabled baby blanket that I wouldn't normally do with striping yarn, but the color changes were subtle so it looked like it would work. I even ordered more yarn to have enough to finish a blanket. Once I finished the garter stitch edge and got into the pattern I quickly realized that the (free) pattern wasn't written very well and was frustrated with the thought of re-writing the pattern and tore out the work already done.

Then I looked through some books and found another cable pattern I really liked. After completing the first couple of cable repeats I have decided that I don't like this very much either. Again... cursed yarn. It wasn't anything against the pattern and I think I'll do that same pattern in another yarn.

Now that I have found the original pinwheel blanket (but not the pattern I was using) I realize how cute this yarn would be in the round. One last time I'm going to try to do something with this cursed yarn. I probably should give up on this yarn and let someone else try, but where would be the fun in that?

This is the project I'm trying next:

Wish me luck (or sanity)!!!

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