Let's talk about swatching.

Swatching is a process many a knitter loathes but I find it to be completely rewarding and really invaluable. Even after ten years in the knitting "biz" I still can't totally predict how a yarn will behave until I swatch it. I might have a good idea but it just doesn't replace having the physical sample in your hands that really let's you see the drape and stitch definition. Also, the whole gauge/tension thing; I guess that's important too ;) Further more, I really hate the feeling I get when I'm antsy to cast on and throw caution to the wind, (swatch be damned!) only to have to later reluctantly commit to something I don't really like just because I'm too stubborn to rip it out. I call that feeling: "PAST SARAH YOU IDIOT WHY DID YOU DO THAT!?" I actually get that feeling a lot in the non-knitting-related forays of my life, more frequently than I'd like to admit (27th year of life you harsh, harsh mistress.)

I've spent the better part of my day contemplating what to do with my newest acquisition of 3 skeins of Malabrigo Rios in Jupiter (while putting off knitting a gift that needs to be done by Feb 15th. Pffttt one WHOLE month to knit a baby sweater, I got dis.) I picked up this yarn at The Yarn Barn in Lawrence, KS last week and I'm glad I'm not a rich person otherwise I would have come home with a whole carload of wool. Now I was actually a really good girl on this trip, I promised myself I wouldn't buy anything, I was just going to look which is what I did. When you work at a yarn store, it's really hard to justify buying yarn at another shop where you don't get a discount. On the other hand, it's not very hard to justify convincing your shopping companion to buy you three skeins of yarn you don't really need as an early birthday gift, (my birthday is in April people, mark your calenders) which is what I actually did. NO REGRETS.

So, I have mixed emotions about this yarn. It's really beautiful, Malabrigo colorways get me every time... but...it's superwash wool. DUN DUN DUN!

Wait why do we hate superwash wool all of the sudden? It's soft and you can put it in the washing machine. Win win. Well.... it turns out wool doesn't become superwash by the wave of a wand or the flick of a finger or the sacrifice of a lamb (woah bro that last one was too close to home, not cool.) It's actually a super-chemically process that turns the once natural sheep's wool into something that definitely resembles wool but has taken a kind of toxic-bath of sorts. Ashley Yousling wrote about it recently on her blog which you should read because it's a more in depth look into this subject and a lot more interesting than this post. But I digress. The point is, I love superwash wool enough to leave my hippie ways behind (and boy have I got those in spades) every once in a while to indulge in a little yarn of the non-environmentalist persuasion. Particularly if I didn't have to pay for it. Plus being bad feels a little good sometimes, no?

So here it is, the actual original point of this post before I went on a yarn tangent: my swatch. See what I mean? Soooo pretty. As you can see I started somewhere and ended up somewhere else. Also another metaphor for the Life of Sarah. Man, this blog is DEEP.

I still have some tweaking to do and some ideas to go through but I'm thinking a big ole' cowl on this one. I'm a sucker for a good cowl. But we'll see... to be continued.