Friday, 19 March 2010

taste testing

I've been swatching away for Bergamot with a few different yarns but still don't have much of an idea of how to proceed. From left to right is Cascade 220 in colourway Galaxy, Brown Sheep Cotton Fleece in colourway Peridot, Filatura di Crosa Zara in colourway 1523 and some teal recycled J Crew (same as I have used for Wallingford and Woolsthorpe), all done on a 4mm or 4.25mm crochet hook (G).

There are all sorts of pros and cons: the Zara and Cascade 220 Galaxy are too dark and the pattern gets lost so that wasn't such a great idea for a swatch; the Cotton Fleece gives great stitch definition; the recycled yarn has no twist in it and doesn't show the pattern very well but I do like the colour; as do I like the Cotton Fleece Peridot but both yarns are heavier than the 8ply (dk) that the pattern calls for, etc etc.

Thing is, I still don't know quite what I want from this - something heavy and woolly for the winter? something fresh and green for the spring? With regard to differing yarn weights and gauges, I feel far more confident about modifying a pattern in crochet than in knitting, so I could change it around a bit, perhaps use a 10ply (worsted) yarn, a larger hook and cut some repeats out of the pattern. Or I could go for the finer version of the Cotton Fleece (Cotton Fine) and use a smaller hook and more repeats.

But then there's the pattern itself - the row of bobbles right across the middle and the lack of shaping and the fact that the model has no visible bust to speak of ... so I get to thinking about ways to change it - make it slimmer, give it some shaping, decrease the bulk of the bobbles and the proliferation of ideas overwhelms me. And as I have said before - making a pattern work is actually really difficult and a fine balance of elements. Once you start to muck around with that it creates a lot of work to get the balance right again. The recycled yarn version is an attempt to make the jacket just as it is (and in the smallest size) to see what it is like but given that crochet takes up so much more yardage than knitting and the yarn is recycled from a size small sweater, there isn't going to be enough of it.

Anyway, I do think that I'll go for either green or purple and by the way, isn't Periwinkle from Rowan 41 pretty?

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