Wednesday, November 7, 2007
I'm on a quest lately to find self-striping yarns. Unfortunately, I don't have to go very far to find them! All I have to do is look in my stash. And I have found a couple of different yarns to sample. So, I will be working up swatches with them in order to see just how they self-stripe. Some questions I want to answer: 1. How long are the stripes in sc, dc, and a pattern like a Granny Square? (Of course I had to use the Granny Square!) 2. Do the colors "pool" at all, as they do in variegated yarns? 3. How abrupt are the color changes? 4. Are the colors repeated in the same order?
The first yarn I worked with is Lily Sugar'n Cream Stripes. It's a 2 oz skein, with about 95 yds, and is worsted weight. It comes in many colorways, and they all appeal to me. The price varies, depending on the store and the sale, but it is approximately the same price as Lily Sugar'n Cream regular yarn. All the qualities that I liked about that yarn (see post on July 25, 2007) I like about this yarn. And more! I really like how this yarn self stripes.
1. WIth sc stitches, I was able to get between 107 and 117 stitches per color, using a Susan Bates H8 5mm hook. With dc stitches I got about 70 stitches per color. With the Granny Square swatch I didn't count the stitches, I just looked at how the square worked up. And as the square gets larger, there will be more colors per round, but there are enough stitches in each color so I don't believe the colors would "pool".
2. "Pooling" usually occurs with short lengths of colors. I would describe it as colors that are "clumped" together for just a few rows and a few stitches. The length of the colors in Sugar'n Cream Stripes is long enough so that I don't think the colors would "pool", even in long rows. However, when you need to start a new skein, you would have to be careful to start it at the same place in the sequence where the last skein ended. (This is something you need to be careful of with most variegated and some self-striping yarns.) Otherwise, the "pattern" of clumps that is set up with the first skein will not be continued, and there will be a glitch in the color.
3. The color changes are not too abrupt. When one color is going to change to the next, the second color is worked into the first color for a few stitches. It blends nicely!
4. The colors seem to be repeated in the same order - so you do have to be careful when you add skeins, to keep that pattern of colors.