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Thursday, June 21, 2007

summer stars


This is a painting I made a few years ago that hangs on the wall facing our front door. Welcome!



Recently, I bought many balls of sparkly yarn (Louisa Harding Coquette). It has multi colored sequins strung all over it that look like tiny summer stars. I felt like whipping up something really simple to wear at night with a t-shirt for our 4th of July holiday.
Here I am standing at the front door modeling the sweater tied at the waist. It’s the only way I can wear it because the fabric slants on the bias.



Here you can see the dramatic bias of this sweater. What is up with that? I knew going in that everything was slanting and that blocking had no effect on the fabric. Why did I continue? I’m stubborn.
Maybe one of you yarn experts can tell me why this happens. I'm assuming that the 100% polyester nature of the yarn is why it absolutely will not block.

16 comments:

Marnie said...

well, if the yarn is singles or overspun, it will cause biasing. What a drag, though. They certainly should have been able to make a yarn that doesn't bias.

Marnie said...

Oh and I love the painting and think the sweater looks very cute tied :)

Gudrun Johnston said...

What a fun little top but what a pain about the slant.....could claim it's an intentional design detail?!
Love the painting. Do you find time to balance both knitting and painting?

Nonnahs said...

Bummer! It's such a cute sweater though, and it really does work being tied in the front. :)

kat coyle said...

Marnie: does overspun wool yarn block out? Or will the yarn forever slant from being overspun? This stuff is made from lots of hair like strands and looks to be twisted in two plies. I don't know if that makes sense, but the yarn is kind of like a wig.

Gudrun: I used to paint and knit a lot but now that I'm a mom I haven't been painting as much, only some water colors now and then.

Nonnahs: thanks! I like it tied.

Sonya said...

That is so strange. I've seen that yarn - it's caught my eye as well. I must have a bit of inner magpie as well. I love the skull painting. The petals led in a mandala feel.

Connie said...

Ugh, what a pain to have the yarn do something unintentional and apparently un-fixable. I agree with Gudren, perhaps you can see it as a design element? Still, I would definitely be annoyed.

I would think that wool would potentially block flatter - that somehow natural fibers can relax - but maybe I'm wrong. I will say that a friend did a swatch in a linen/alpaca blend that biased like crazy (swatch turned out parallelogram rather than square), but behaved when blocked.

Romi said...

Very very cute sweater. Did you try "killing" the fabric with super hot steam?

Debbie said...

The sweater is adorable! Maybe, you could stand with your hip to the opposite side, and no one would notice how the front slants! It's cute tied. I love the painting. Oh, by the way, what pattern did you use for the sweater?

kat coyle said...

Debbie: Thanks! I've worn it twice tied up and I'm going to try Romi's suggestion and attempt to kill it with steam. I'll make a post about it IF it works.
I made up the pattern for the sweater.

Carla said...

If it is 100% poly you may have trouble with steaming, plus I am not quite sure if it won't end up melting... The only thing I know that can overcome an overtwisted yarn is to pair knit stitches with purl stitches. Do you think you could stand to re-knit it in rib or rice stitch?

kat coyle said...

Hi Carla, thank you for this information. I suspected melting might be an issue, I'll test a swatch before I try it on the sweater. And,no way will I reknit this sweater! It's okay. I'm kind of over it and on to my next projects. Right now, she is decorating my room by living on the mannequin.

Julie said...

I am also making something with this yarn, and the bias drives me crazy. The only way to use this yarn so that it does not go bias is to use a combo knit/purl pattern (e.g., seed stitch, etc.) I've tested this and it's true.

However, I don't like the seed stitch with the sequins.

kat coyle said...

Julie,
The bias is so annoying! I've continued to wear the sweater but only tied up because it looks horrible otherwise. And I agree the knit purl combinations don't work that well with the sequins.

Julie said...

I think I found another solution to the bias (in addition to a knit/purl stitch like seed stitch).

I rewound the yarn -- in the opposite direction. I reknit the front of my sweater -- and NO BIAS!!! I'm now trying to reknit the back. So, I'd recommend rewinding the ball of yarn and tossing the cardboard core. Wish I had done this earlier.

Anne said...

I just wanted to say thank you for the warning - I've got about 10 balls of this stuff - pretty, shiny... - not sure what I want to make with it yet (it's pink, I have a 4 year old daughter...) - but it's good to be forewarned about the biassing.