Sunday, May 27, 2007

Shells

Friday I rooted out the multi-colored rayon blend I mentioned the other day, as well as the green. Turns out the multi-colored yarn is 85% rayon, 15% silk. According to the label, the cone weighs .67 lb. It is a mill end, and I remember purchasing this from the Michigan Fiber Fest last year. The tag shows Davidson Corporation in Eaton Rapids, MI. According to the label, I paid 16.75 for this cone. ($25.00 per pound) With the multiple colors, I thought a plain stockinette might be good for this yarn. At tension 7 on the KH864, I got 40 stitches = 5.75 in, and 60 rows = 6.5 in., meaning it is 7 stitches to the inch and 9.2 rows to the inch.



The green yarn is quite a bit lighter weight- it is also a mill end, labelled 15/2 Rayon/Cotton. I paid $2.50 per pound. I think perhaps I bought this at R&M yarns in Adairsville, Georgia during their "dollar days" sale several years ago. I experimented quite a bit until I got a texture I liked. Initially I used the yarn as a single ply and it was much too light. I then wound off quite a bit, and used it double in stockinette at tension 6 and found it still a little light weight for my liking. Then inspiration struck - I have never knitted a slip-stitch pattern on my machine. Why not try now? I picked the Brother punchcard #6 (from the bulky machine) which is kind of a tumbling-block pattern. 40 stitches and 60 rows in the swatch yielded a much shorter swatch. 40 stitches = 5.25 inches, 60 rows = 3.75 inches! That is 7.6 stitches per inch, and 16 rows to the inch! I will be knitting a lot more rows to achieve the same length, but I am happy with the fabric weight in the swatch. Material cost will be much less for the cotton/rayon blend, but the labor cost will be higher. So, plugging in the numbers into the shell pattern I put in Garment Designer the other night, I see I am to cast on 150 stitches, and the bands are supposed to be 8 rows tall.

I have cast on using the weaving cast on (EON in work, K 1 R, All needles in work, knit several rows of waste yarn), then knit 1 row of ravel cord. Theoretically this will make it easier to hang the hem. (ha! Garment Designer doesn't tell me what kind of hem or band to use! My choice!) I am going to knit 8 rows at 1 tension tighter than the garment tension (5) , Knit 1 row at T10 for turning row, then knit 8 rows at tension 6 and hang the hem. I am going to do this in stockinette, which will contrast with the garment body. hmmm. No, that won't work at all. Looking at the body pattern, I am to knit 10 rows then cast on additional 6 stitches each side. Hmmm. This is getting complicated.

OK, thought about it a while. I will go ahead and knit the body, then rehang the bottom for the edging. This will give me more options to trim anyway, and I can think about the edging while knitting the main pieces.

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