half-assed knit blog
half-assed knit blog
half-assed knit blog

It just had to be brown yarn, didn’t it.

Dear Large Pile of Silky Wool,

Would you like to be a Tangled Yoke Cardigan, or a sweater of my own design? Please let me know as soon as possible.


Inanimate objects are notoriously bad at correspondence, so while I waited for the Silky Wool’s reply, I decided to grab some needles and swatch.

The ball band suggested 6s, so that’s what I tried first. Right away I could tell that something was wrong. Something was very, very wrong. The stockinette wasn’t too bad, but as soon as I tried anything else, well… why don’t I just let you see for yourself. The swatch is helpfully labeled for your convenience.


Yep, all those intricate patterns promptly melted into a sea of nondescript yarn poo. Noooo! The Tangled Yoke Cardigan has that lovely twisty cabley thing that needs to stand out. The sweater in my head (is it healthy to have sweaters in your head?) is all columns of texture. Yarn poo is completely unacceptable in either case.

All wasn’t lost. I decided to swatch on 4s, the smallest needles I have on hand, and see if a tighter gauge would make the stitch patterns pop. I gave up on the aran braid cable too; I think that may be put to better use in the Thing that I plan to make with my Misti Cotton, but that’s a subject for another time.

Well, I have good news and bad news.

The good news:


Much, much better. Not at all resembling anything that rhymes with Mecal Fatter.

The bad news:


So what if the last garment I knit on 4s nearly drove me mad? It won’t be like Maddy. It won’t be like Maddy… right? With either sweater, the stitch patterns will be much simpler than Maddy’s lace, it’ll be mostly mindless and go much quicker. Yes. Graaaah. I love the way small-needle knits look. And I don’t even have a problem using small needles. If my feet weren’t so beastly I’d be all over sock-knitting. But a whole sweater? Graaaaaaah. I am not a patient person. Crap, crap, crap, boobs, crap.

As if I wasn’t confused enough, I then received a reply from the Silky Wool.

Dear Cyn,

Remember that pretty sweater you saw on Craftster? The one that was made in Felted Tweed, which means that it would work quite well in Silky Wool? The one that is all stockinette and garter so you wouldn’t have to worry about stitch definition? Maybe you should look into that pattern, huh?

Large Pile of Silky Wool

P.S. Stop saying that I look like poo.

Oh, great. Just great. The pretty sweater is Patti, from some Rowan booklet and now available on their site for cheap. It doesn’t look too pretty there. But here’s the one I saw on Craftster, which proves that it has the potential to be adorable.

What to do, what to do…

I think I will shut the Large Pile of Silky Wool in the yarn bin, as punishment for confusing me like this. It can take some time in there to think about what it has done. I’ll tell the Malabrigo to give it a little poke every now and then.

Oooh! I forgot that I had Malabrigo in there!

… oh noooo. Now I’m going to start angsting over what to do with the Malabrigo.


  1. Mae says:

    You are 90% crazy and I love it.
    LOVE IT!!!

    I agree, the coloration (word?) with the 6’s just makes it look like poo. Not pretty for a sweater!!!

    I love you. LOVE!!!
    Someday I will knit Maddy (when I’m not busy procrastinating on my knitting…) and then we can be pure awesome twinsies!

  2. M.E. says:

    You totally rock my toe-socks.

  3. Lisa says:

    Go for the garment on size 4s! It looks wonderful! (No, it won’t be like Maddy. Of course it won’t.)

    And I love your demon yarn/garment pictures. They totally crack me up. :)

  4. Webbo says:

    That Patti cardigan is gorgeous. Tricky length for me, but I bet you would pull it off awesomely, and I think it would suit the silky wool nicely (I was going to tell you, I saw a finished TYC on a blog done in Silky Wool, and while it didn’t look poo, I did have trouble seeing the cable amidst the variegation).

  5. Floderten says:

    I hate when yarn is playing games with you and won’t reveal it’s secret ambition. I felt the same way with my Yorkshire Tweed 4-ply (how many times have I mentioned what I want it to be on my blog? I have no idea) – I hope you figure something out. :)

  6. Ruth says:

    Did you buy that Silky Wool at Webs, perchance? I just bought that same color on sale and have been engaged in the same swatching exercise. Round 1: knit swatch with cables on size 6 needles. Block. Realize it will never work. Plan to try again on size 4.

    I haven’t gotten around to Round 2 yet, but it’s nice to know that the 4s worked for you.

  7. Tanya says:

    Oh, the cabled swatch on 4s looks so scrunchily good – I kind of hope you’ll go for the frustrating 4s. It’s only time……

    But the Patti cardigan is really cute too.

    You can’t go wrong!

  8. Ladylungdoc says:

    I’d be concerned that the size 4 garment woulddn’t be drapey enough.

    There’s a Dragonfly knit out of silky wool out in blogland somewhere

  9. Rivka says:

    That Patti sweater is ridiculously cute. I haven’t seen the sweater pattern you’re talking about, but if it were me, I’d let the yarn shine and do its thang, aka not force a non-texture-stitch yarn to be a texture stitch yarn. Just my opinion! Anything you make will be loverly.

  10. Lynn says:

    Hi, just popped over because of a link on LadyLungDoc’s blog. I am waiting to finish the cabled hoodie from Inspired Cabled Knits, out of Telemark, on *1*s. I feel your pain.

  11. Ruthless Knitting » Blog Archive » Swatch-Sized Pieces says:

    […] like this swatch, and sometimes I don’t. It’s hanging out in a drawer now. (Cyn of the Half-Assed Knit Blog bought what appears to be the same color and had the same problems with it, so I guess it’s […]