So far I have let it be known that I love to knit and that I love to op shop. Far and away beyond these things though, I love to get my own way. This has caused me quite some difficulties in the past, particularly when I was of the opinion that the universe should jive left and the universe was of the opinion that it would jive right (yes, didn't you know that the universe jives?).
Do you recall my lovely wound recycled linen yarn of a week or so ago? Well, the pattern that it was destined for (note use of cosmic language here) called for 5 ply (25 sts to 10 cm) and that is the gauge that it was knit at in the original garment (an Elle b knit that i bought at the op shop - remember Elle b? It was a Sportsgirl diffusion label in the mid- to late-90s).
That, however, was a machine knit and that makes a difference. On my 3.25mm knitting needles it came out more like a 4ply (28sts to 10cm). So, did I just decide to knit something different with it? No, of course not. I want to get my own way.
The original linen yarn is made up of three strands. A quick test knit over a fair few rows of stocking stitch proved that five strands of the linen would provide a perfect 5-ply thread (funny that). To this end I have been rewinding the linen, a three-strand thread from one ball combines with just two strands from another. To achieve this I have to separate out a single strand from the second ball of linen. Oh what a tangled web I weave. That third strand does not separate out easily and not only have I decreased my yardage by putting the five strands together, I have also wasted quite a bit in tangles that I could only come to terms with using scissors.
The result though is a very satisfactory 5 ply. Whether I end up with enough to actually knit the ballerina top remains to be seen. I'm already thinking that it could have short sleeves instead of long, and ribbon ties instead of knitted ties. Who will win this argument, me or the universe?
ps. A great tutorial on how to unravel a jumper is available over at Neauveau Fibre Arts, although I must admit that I skip the skein-making and washing step, I just unravel straight onto my ball winder. As evidenced by my crinkly yarn.