Thursday, December 22, 2005

Blockin' 'n Bloggin'

Worked some more on dad's scarf last night and I'm pretty close to finishing it. For some reason I've found this scarf particularly slow-going, frustrating and mind-numbingly boring, so I'll be glad to be done with it. My frustration has nothing to do with the design or designer, (what could be more straightforward than 2x2 ribbing?), and more to do with the yarn (very nice but highlights every mistake) and the knitter (who makes lots of mistakes). I think I'm going to stop at 3 balls of the Karabella Aurora Bulky, as it's already about 44 inches long, and I'm going to be washing & blocking it this weekend, so it will no doubt stretch. I know it'll stretch in length; what I'm hoping is it will also stretch a bit in width, (the 2x2 ribbing really draws it in), as well as even out the stitches (and hide the mistakes??? too much to ask of blocking??? Laurie says it's magic, so I'm going to trust that, for now). I'll photo-document that scintillating process, (whoo hoo!), as it will be my very first attempt at blocking.
Which leads me to a question -- what do most people use to wash their hand-knits? Is Woolite sufficient, or should I use something special like Eucalan No-Rinse Wool Wash? Clara Parkes at Knitter's Review warns against the former and recommends the latter. I'm all for using the best product, but this will require a trip to my LYS tomorrow, which I hadn't planned on. (Oh, okay, twist my arm).


I'm contemplating switching to a different template for this blog. I like this one -- I felt the parchment background of this "Scribe" template would be a good compliment to knitting topics, but the more I blog, the more annoyed I'm getting with the limitations of its narrowness. Perhaps it's just me and my monitor and resolution and browser, but I'd like my main column to be wider and I can't really change that because the template image limits that. There might be a way to widen the image - I haven't figured that out and am not sure I really want to go to all that trouble, so am thinking of switching to a plain white template like:

With a plain white background, I can fiddle with column widths to my heart's content and not have to worry about columns exceeding the borders of the background image. I also think that a cleaner look is more pleasing to the eye and just more enjoyable to read. Anyone who has an opinion please post it in the comments - I'd love to hear it.



Suzanne said...

I've heard bad stuff about Woolite too but I think the rumors of it having bleach in it are not true. I sometimes use Euclan (which I do like) but out of laziness I used some diluted Dr. Bronners to block some stuff (I use that for a hand soap in the bathrooms an it was beside the sink already) and it works nicely too. Nice smell.

Moorehouse Merino recommends Dawn dishwashing soap for all their knits (I'm not joking, check their site.) So...there is a huge range of what is possible. I've heard many people use shampoo. I love scents, so I'd pick on the basis of smell. But that's me.

DustBunniesCanWait said...

I use Dawn for my wool projects. Works great, readily available and best of all within my budget :-)