Bloom

I mentioned last time that I loved how the Bare Naked Wools yarns bloomed when they hit the water.  Then I showed you a picture of them still on the needles where they were totally 100% not blooming.  So let’s fix that, shall we?  I just finished up the second slipper (well, finished the knitting, I still have to attach the strap).  The first one has had a soaking, a nice vigorous thrashing, and a good blocking.  The second is fresh off the needles.  Look at the difference.

_DSC9486See how the top one is nice and fuzzy and happy?  You can see the ribbing clearly, and the stitches are neat and tidy.  Whereas the bottom one is still sort of tense and bunched up.  You can’t really see the purl half of the ribbing at all, and the stitches are uneven.

_DSC9483The whole structure of the slipper changes dramatically.  The soaked and blocked one is lovely and relaxed, the one fresh off the needles is puckered and tight.  This is a prime example of why it’s ridiculously important to wash and block your gauge swatches before you start your project.  Yarn changes when it hits the water, and it’s important to know how it changes!  The only way I’ve found to do that is with a swatch.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to finish up the straps and tuck these away in my suitcase.  I’m headed off Wednesday for Washington and the Visionary Authors retreat (I wrote a bit about last year’s trip here), and I want to photograph them on the trip.  This is one of those trips that’s oddly hard to talk about (it’s the strangest combination of lots of fun and really really hard work), so I’ve not said too much about it in the past.  But I do have every intention of making a return visit to the sheep and goat farm for another blanket, and of heading out to the water, though perhaps without encountering a giant mudhole, so with luck, I should have something to report when I return.  And never fear, I won’t leave you languishing while I’m gone, I’ve got a lovely give away lined up for later in the week!