Friday, December 09, 2005

I'm excited...about acrylic.

It's not often that a yarn really makes an impression on me...but this one has. Remember when I told you about the wool-ease that I used to make the veste everest. Well, forget all of that. I have found a far superior acrylic blend yarn. I know, it's crazy to even think an acrylic blend yarn is even on my needles again...but I needed a machine washable yarn.
A couple days ago my FIL was here and I took his measurements for a sweater he wants. He says (use your heavy Italian accent)

"You already took my mean you haven't even started my sweater for Christmas!?"

Oh man. There is no getting around this one, it has to be done. My husband and my FIL are two peas in a pod. Not only are they grown children, but Christmas morning with them is like Christmas with a 3 yr old. I have to get this knit.
So I ran out to my LYS to get some Wool-ease. (my MIL although an avid crocheter, will never hand wash). She had no Wool-ease...but she had this:

Diamond brand "Tempo" 75% acrylic and 25% wool. When I first picked it up I thought it was wool. I read the label, found that it is actually an acrylic blend that is machine washable and dryable. Unbelievable really. The colour selection that she had is just outstanding.
I swatched and threw it in the washer. Looked into the dryer it went. Unbelievable. No stitch shrinkage, no crunchy acrylic. Beautiful. This yarn does not split at all...while the wool-ease does and wool-ease is crunchy. I am loving this yarn so much that I am thinking of making myself a sweater out of it. If I knit myself a sweater out of this stuff, you know it is good.

So where am I going with this sweater. Well, ribby cardi is the base. He wanted black but they didn't have enough in stock so, we are adding some grey accents. I am just about done the back...hopefully starting a front today...I can do this!

I am wondering about the sleeves. I haven't read far enough in to pattern yet, but you knitting guru's out there could probably direct me...I don't want to rib the sleeves and this is a raglan sweater. Do I just make the decrease on the raglan sleeves the same as the front and back pieces while making the plain st st sleeve the same size as the schematic? Yes?

Thank you for all of your comments on the christmas knits. It is encouraging. I am out there reading blogs everyday...I don't really take the time to comment. So know that I am reading...I just have to keep knitting....and knitting...and knitting. (remind me to either start earlier next year or just not to knit for everyone in my family!)
I will post the flap hat pattern for
you this week. Thank you for your interest!


Anonymous said...

Everybody gets so uptight about acrylic. It definitely has its place for easy care garments. In fact, I'm about to go and get some for mittens (my mittens get sooooo dirty). Thanks for this rec. I will look for some when I shop!

Laura said...

I have some ancient acrylic, of course, and some of the newer stuff. There is definitely a difference! I love the newer acrylics, easy care and not awful to knit.

The prior post's cookies look good, I'll bet there's not many left. ;)

Anonymous said...

Interesting, acrylic. Who would have guessed. Good luck getting this sweater done. I have utter faith in your ability to finish all your Christmas knits. Although if you need someone to talk you out of knitting for so many family members next year, I'm your girl.

savannahchik said...

you know, that label looks awfully similar to plymouth encore. here's a pic i wonder if that's the canadian name for it. if so i can understand why you'd like it. i really dig it for house socks and baby items too. knits up great, takes well to wearing, and you can wash and dry it. if it can hold up in socks, your FIL should do great with it as a cardigan.

nice yarn choice. good luck getting it done in time!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting that pattern. I think that it's really cute.

Anonymous said...

That's a great recommendation for a yarn. I'll investigate more as soon as you actually decide to make a sweater for yourself out of it! Your plan for sleeves sounds exactly like what I'd do.

Laura said...

That yarn sounds really nice -- it's good to know about an alternative for kids, etc. that is nicer than Wool-Ease.

If anyone can get this sweater done, it's you! Go! Go!

Tracy Batchelder said...

Love all your knitted Christmas gifts and I think everyone else will too. This sweater is turning out great. I think it was a good thing the store didn't have enough black...the grey stripes are just the right touch.

WandaWoman said...

I think the yarn you're talking about is Plymouth Encore in the States. I've never made a garment for myself out of it, but I've made a few baby blankets out of it, as well as a couple of baby sweaters out of it. B/c I know of no new mothers (knitters or not) who want to handwash with a newborn around. I love using the yarn and for being mostly acrylic, it does feel like wool, nice to knit with and holds up pretty well. I love using it and the yarn is at a nice reasonable price and you get a lot of yardage out of this yarn at the worsted weight too.