I apologize for the length of time between my last post and this one. My trusty laptop has stopped functioning, and I’ve got my fingers crossed I’ll be able to revive it.
In my last post, I wrote about how to Reverse Engineer a sweater, or more specifically, how to asses the elements that you’ll need to know to reverse engineer a sweater. In my example, I used a sweater worn by Emma Watson as Hermione Granger in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I. Today, I’m going to write about how to use existing patterns to create a pattern to recreate the sweater of your dreams – or in this case J.K. Rowling’s dreams.
In the earlier half of the last millennium, those accused of crimes could prove their innocence through a trial of fire or water. Thus subjecting a person to either water or fire, usually represented in the form of hot metal rods or ploughshares (as the peasants would probably have more of these at their disposal), was a way to separate the guilty from the innocent.
Well, we can also use trial by fire and water to separate the wools from the cottons from the acrylics. Generally, most animal fibers will follow wool’s example, and most plant-based fibers will follow cotton’s example. Of course, it is always better to retain the ball band (the paper wrapped around the yarn to label it with the company, brand, fiber content, recommended needle size and washing instructions) to remember the fiber content of a particular skein, ball, or cake of yarn. However, who hasn’t pranced home from the yarn store, ripped off the ball band with fevered abandon, and wound their skein, telling themselves “I’m going to start something with this yarn right now!” only to have to abandon your newly wound skein to make dinner or walk the dog or fall into the internet hole? Then you return to your beautiful new yarn a week later only to discover you can’t find the ball band (psst! look under the couch cushions). Or maybe Great Auntie Mabel sent you some yarn she picked up at a church rummage sale, summing up the note with a, “I thought you would like this. See? You don’t have to spend all your money at that fancy yarn store!” Or maybe, you are a thrifty knitter who searches the Good Wills and second hand shops for old sweaters to unravel and knit anew. The point is, you will eventually end up with yarn whose fiber contents are entirely unknown to you. Time to separate the guilty from the innocent.