Friday, August 05, 2011

Choosing Yarns for Wanda Nell, Part Two

Alternate title: Why I have no business buying any more sock yarn, part two.

I'm back with more pretties. I hope your eyes are ready.

This is a continuation of yesterday's post about how to go about choosing two different yarns to use together in two-color knitting. It's especially fun to work two hand dyed yarns together for a whole new effect. Some of the yarns here and from yesterday's post are solids, some have subtle shadings and some are self-patterning, which just makes for even more interesting effects when working them together in the same project, like the Wanda Nell.
First up is this yummy couple: Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in Chocolatier with Schaefer Nichole in Julia Child. Yes, it's all about food here. I'm hungry--how about you? I think these two yarns would make a delicious match. The Artisan Sock is 90/10 Merino/Nylon and the Nichole is 80/20 Merino/Nylon and they both have a sweet twist. One has four plies and the other three, but the 4-ply is spun a little tighter, resulting in a very similar gauge. I think Wendee and Cheryl, the dyers, must have had a mind meld, because these colors are perfect together.
For bit of a departure, let's look at two yarns more closely. This is Spirit Trail Fiberworks Alexandra in Honeyed Plums and Fleece Artist Nova Socks in Ivory. Both are 100% washable Merino and both have two plies. The ivory above is spun a little looser, but when they are knit together they result in beauty. I am working on a fingerless mitt with a bit of Fair Isle using these two, so I'll show you how they look together soon.
These two have a great color combo going for them, but you can tell that this Cascade Heritage in #5615 and this Sundara Sock in South Seas do not even have the same gauge. Sometimes you don't have to spend time doing a swatch to tell--it's that obvious.
And sadly this Lollipop Cabin Merino in #1336 only looks good propped atop this Crazy4Dying Go Crazy in Michelle. The second one's 100% BFL content is a far smaller gauge than the Lollipop Cabin's 100% Superwash Merino show you that not all sock yarns are created equal, for sure.
I think this is the happiest couple yet. look at those lively hues, those happy plies! On the left we have Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in Sailor's Delight and on our right is Wool in the Woods Cherub in what I think is Sugar Maple (the label had no color name). The sailor's shorter color changes of pinks and oranges will work against the cherub's longer ones for a very happy marriage. It's a merino marriage of a three-ply and slightly fatter two-ply that works, in my opinion.
Here you see a more muted companionship between some Yarntini Merino Sock in Chocolate Cream and some Shibui Sock in #3001. It works well because they have exactly the same fiber content and the same ply count. Yarntini must have been the girl next door to Shibui growing up.
Lastly I hooked up a skein of Hazel Knits Artisan Sock in Pacific with two different other yarns to see who was the best partner for this lovely skein of sock yarn. In this picture I was amazed at how well the Hazel went with this Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock in Baltic Sea, but was not so satisfied with the gauge match. The skinnier four plies in the Lorna's would be overtaken by Hazel's fat three plies in a fight to the finish--and finish well it would not.
However, I think I would like to see Hazel go a round with this Claudia Hand Painted Fingering in Walk in the Woods. Even though the twist of the Claudia is looser and sproingier, I think it would work. The fiber content is almost the same, so I think we will see Hazel and Claudia walking hand-in-hand through the park.

Well, darn, this has all made me want to knit up all the successful pairings! I think at the very least I could satisfy us all for the time being by working up a few swatches of some of these successful matches. I would really like to try some mosaic stitches with these lovelies. I'll be back after the weekend with some to show you.

Have a knitterly and relaxing weekend, if you can!


Natalie Goza said...

I think my fav pairing is the past pic. The colors are so fantastic!

fig said...

Thanks for weighing in on this. I think that last pair is going to be some socks!