Monday, December 19, 2016

It's the yarn

This is Malabrigo Mecha, in "Arco Iris".  I don't know what an Arco Iris is, but I think it must be some kind of fairy rainbow clown pajamas, because this yarn, in this color, is a thing unto itself.  It is so beautiful, and so everycolored, and so detailed.  And so multi. Which is something I love a lot but can't figure out what to do with.  I have fallen for this game a million times, and I keep falling for it--those gorgeous, handpainted skeins that are total works of art.  They are so irresistible!  And then they disappear into the bottom strata of the stash, coming out once every few months for petting and admiration, and then back in they go.  It bugs me, this, because these skeins are so luscious until I start knitting with them, which is when I fall out of love.  My dear friend Ethel collects beautiful, soft skeins of yarn like this, yarns that are carefully, artfully handpainted by an expert--a genius, probably--and she leaves them that way, in the skein, and she loves them.  But I knit things, so mittens happened. 
This yarn is a densely spun single, and my meticulous scrutiny (I stopped after every row to gasp at how the colors were layering) revealed that this density is where the magic is--the thick single ply is still mostly white in the middle, and the dye--All The Colors!--skims the surface layer only, so that the yarn seems somehow to glow from within, like a watercolor painting, which works the same way;  white paper glowing from beneath a transparent layer of glaze=light.  I made myself work on these mittens only during daylight hours, to maximize appreciation of the colors as they unfolded, and it was joyful.  There was no striping, and no pooling, either.  What?  How?  I don't know.  Magic and genius, I guess.  
 
As the mittens developed, I (predictably) sort of liked them less and less--I love this color up close, and in small quantities.  Making it into a mitten seems to have diminished it somehow, and made it ordinary.  
Look at the light coming out of those wrong-side stitches.  Just, oooh.  
I liked the wrong side better, so when the mittens were done, I wove in the ends that way and turned them inside out.  
 
I like them, but just.  Knitting them, and watching this yarn do its thing, was a rainbow of happiness.  They'll get worn a lot, and probably will get worn out--I live in a snowy world, after all--and they are warm and colorful, and there's nothing wrong with them at all, but the fun in these was all in the making of them.  It was a pretty nice way to spend an afternoon.