In Which the Pirate-Husband Inkles More.

On Saturday, Pirate-Husband and I stopped at Knit and Stitch = Bliss in Bethesda. He was in search of a bulky-weight yarn for weaving his utility strap, and I was looking for a skein of superwash Cascade 220. Neither of us found what we were looking for, but I did find this Trendsetter Tonalita that just called out to me and demanded to be my first yarn purchase of the year. The colours are very ‘me’ and I love gradients in yarn. The Tonalita is an aran-weight singles yarn, 52% wool and 48% acrylic. It’s supposedly non-feltable but I still wouldn’t want to toss it into the washing machine, as it seems a little on the delicate side. At first I was thinking of making armwarmers with it, but then I decided that a new hat would be even better. My Manos hats are showing their age and the Winterlude Hat(tm) is too warm for anything but the coldest weather, so I thought a wool blend would be just right for a medium-warm hat. After some searching I settled on the Hurricane Hat pattern, which can be found free at String in Motion. A more complicated pattern wouldn’t show up well against the colour changes, and I really like the purl swirls of a Hurricane, especially the way they come together at the crown of the hat to form the eye.

Sometimes it’s difficult to take pictures of yarn without a cat getting involved. Fortunately for him, Kipling was more interested in the wrist strap dangling from the camera than the yarn! I spent a good amount of time over the weekend playing with the new camera and learning the ins and outs, and I’m quite pleased with it and the quality of pictures. I had fun trying all the different settings, and I think I took more than a hundred pictures. For the first time ever, I even got some good shots of Floyd! I’ll post them later this week for Feline Friday.

I suggested that Pirate-Husband might have more luck finding a reasonably-priced bulky washable yarn at a crafts store. The first place we tried didn’t have anything, but I did get a replacement pocket measuring tape for the one that died last week. Then we went to Michaels and found Lion Brand super bulky Wool-Ease in burgundy, black and gray. We knew that one ball of burgundy and one of gray would be plenty but we weren’t sure how much black he would need, so we bought a few extra knowing that it could be returned. While we were at the store, I bought a small hole punch that’s exactly what I need for making the right-size holes for jump rings in stitch marker charms. That’s going to be my next non-knitting project! Now I just need two pair of tiny pliers, and I’ll be ready to go.

On Saturday night Pirate-Husband followed the advice from Eadwyn’s comment last week to make new heddles and warp the loom, and by Sunday evening he had finished his new strap. It came out to be almost exactly ten feet long, and used up almost a full ball of the black yarn, since it was the majority of the warp and all of the weft, but there’s plenty of the burgundy and gray left over. The yarn was a learning experience for him. Since it’s not smooth like the crochet thread he used for the first project, it was much harder to get it to slide through the heddles. On the other hand, the super bulky yarn weaves up super quickly, and the finished product is exactly what he wanted! Sometimes yarn is like that, I told him. Sometimes you just dislike the yarn but love the finished product (like everything I’ve ever knit in cotton). That’s a lot better than loving the yarn but hating your finished product…

Maybe I will ask him to make a matching or coordinating strap for me. Hmmm!

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