Sunday, June 10, 2007

fifteen point one

Reclaimed yarn has an entirely different feel to new yarn. I just skeined up my gray sweater-coat thanks to my new niddy-noddy. Next comes washing and with any luck selling. Although, I'll keep a skein for myself to play with and make a Dalek tea cozy with. Yeah for science fiction!

What I've noticed so far about reclaimed yarn:

  • Most people call it recycled yarn, but I don't think it's recycled yet. I think once it's made into something new and exciting, then we can call it recycled. When it's yarn like this, it's a lot like Aristotle's prime matter, it's neither here nor there, it just is - it waits for form to be imposed upon it.

  • It's much softer than new yarn with the same fiber content. This must be from wear, the same way a sweater gets softer the more you wash it.

  • It is slightly felted. This appears to make the yarn stronger thus compensating for any weakness that may have developed during it's previous life.

  • It's not perfect. But then again, the last mass produced yarn I bought had over 8 errors in 50 grams of bulky yarn. From poorly tied knots to big slubs (in a 'consistent', machine produced yarn. UG!). It may not be normal for a new yarn to have so many errors, but it does happen. Same with reclaimed yarn. Perhaps there was a weak spot that needed re-splicing. For the most part, I was able to get long, uninterrupted lengths of yarn.

  • Unbroken segments of yarn are longer than new yarn. This must be because when it is machine knit, they don't use these tiny little balls of yarn like us hand knitters. Rather, I imagine, they have large spools of yarn to work from.

  • It knits differently than new yarn of the same size and fiber content. For reasons stated above and others unknown to me, it does knit up differently. But I like the result.

The Victoria Fiber Festival continued today. I rode to the knit-out on my bike in the pouring rain (was that hail?). It felt just like England all over again. I got so overwhelmed with all that fiber, I forgot to take photos. Sorry all.

I think I'll curl up with a blanket, a nice cuppa tea and a good book (Yarn Harlot) or my BC socks (see previous post) and try to get rid of this chill I picked up on my cycle ride.

1 comment:

Miss Scarlett said...

I love the sweater you made! It is great - I have yet to try a project with 'reclaimed' yarn (I think your title makes the most sense)
I have so much stash I need to work through that I can't rationalize it...yet!
Your plan to cozy in sounds perfect - did you get to do it?