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Let ‘er rip…

A couple of months ago a student of mine, Melissa, came to class wearing a dramatic infinity scarf.  I literally forgot I was the teacher and was all about her scarf. It looked like she was wearing a skein of yarn. I asked her to take it off and peppered her with questions:

  • What’s the pattern?  String Theory
  • What yarn did you use? madelinetosh dk (pattern uses dk or fingering)
  • How did you do the bind off? trick within the pattern ~ no spoiler.

The basic premise of the pattern is alternating knit and purl sections.  When you reach the desired depth, you drop the purl stitches down to the cast on.  The designer did an excellent job of including a photo tutorial for the bind off as well as a trick to keep the knit stitches from unravelling.

I decided to make this project one of my travel projects (to Ireland and Scotland) because the knitting itself was mindless and easy.. The yarn I chose is a compelling shade of Hedgehog Fibres Skinny singles, dragonfly (Fingering: 100% Merino Wool – single ply, 400 yards). This color is just magical to me.

The project fit perfectly into my “day bag” and was featured in my “I will knit” photos on Instagram and Facebook. Clockwise from top left: on a tour bus, breakfast with scones and clotted cream, at the oldest pub in Dublin,  on the plane, breakfast with black pudding and haggis, on a boat on Loch Ness, and in a replica of an fisherman’s house.

I did not knit much after the Guinness Brewery tour 
or after the Whisky Experience in Edinburgh. 
But I digress…..

I documented the finishing journey of the project. This was an e-ticket ride (probably dating myself). Hindsight being 20/20, a special beverage might have been bracing. 

Just for grins, giggles and the nerds out there (present company included), here are some measurements:

  • 22″ circumference before bind off
  • One purl section measures 1.5″
  • One dropped purl section measures 6″
  • Pre-blocked (wet) circumference) measures 61″
  • Blocked (stretched would be more accurate) measurement: 96″ and will probably go to 98″.

After dropping one section.  Point of interest, since my yarn was single ply/roving, it didn’t run fast like a plied yarn or silky yarn.  I had to coax it row by row.  Sometimes it got sticky and I’d have to coax it with a little more enthusiasm. I admit to breaking into a bit of a sweat initially,

Halfway point and hitting a groove.

Having previous experience with hand-dyed yarns running a little bit when soaking, I added a splash of white vinegar to the water.  The water was clear when I took it out.

The pattern instructs you to hang it with weights.  I didn’t and should have.  Also, there were some sticky sections that didn’t unravel the whole way, so I’ll soak it again.

Final verdict – LOVE IT! Definite do-over on a smaller scale maybe with a precious skein of Artyarns (variegated) or a non-wool yarn for summer wear.

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