Thursday, 26 August 2010

Clearing the Air

I mentioned recently that eBay is absolutely lethal at the moment. By this I meant that bags and balls of yarn are going for such low prices that well, one couldn't possibly let them go.

I've had my eye open for some Debbie Bliss Cotton Denim Aran for a while, because I want to make the Lace Edge Cardigan from the pattern book of that name. It's all garter stitch so it uses a vast amount of yarn and any lots that came up were 5 balls, or dark purple, or in some other way not quite what I was looking for. And then recently someone posted 26 balls of it at a very reasonable Buy It Now.

Did I actually have the money? Well, not exactly, but it wasn't going to get any cheaper if I waited, was it? I've done a swatch but I'm not going to let myself cast on until I've finished, or at least got to the hood of, Billie.

And then a Ravelry friend faved the Sprout baby blanket, which is very tempting.

It could be knitted with All Seasons Cotton so I idly checked eBay and someone was selling a bag of that in a splendid green called - Sprout! I would say it's more sort of Spinach, but I wasn't in the mood to quibble.

The same person subsequently posted some Rowan Pure Wool 4 Ply in white, which would be perfect for a christening blanket. Or something else. And then, a fortnight later, she posted another three balls of the same.

No-one else bid for any of these - what else was I supposed to do?

And now, an explanation of the photo of the green yarn. This is a Handy Tip. The yarn had a very faint whiff of cigarette smoke about it. It probably would have aired out while I was knitting it, but I didn't want to wait. If you burn a candle, any candle, in a room containing cigarette smoke, the smell of smoke will disappear. It takes a longer or a shorter time according to the size of the room and the amount of smoke, but it works. This isn't anything to do with masking smells, but is something to do with carbon chemistry which I wouldn't claim to understand. If you use more candles, it will happen quicker.

Thus, if you have a garment which smells of smoke, hang it in the bathroom - or any other small room - and burn a candle. The smell of smoke will vanish as if by magic. I usually use the bathroom because it's quicker and because I reckon it's a safer place to leave candles burning.

So you see, in the photo I wasn't worshipping at the altar of the yarn, I was just cleansing the atmosphere. It works for curtains and everything, even your hair.

But I really must stop checking for yarn on eBay.

I finished casting off the Beachy Blue Swallowtail Shawl and it's waiting to be blocked.

And I'm finishing the denimy Pinwheel. Depending on which pattern you use, this blanket can have eight sections or ten: by some cunning maneouvre, I 've got nine. Oh well. Once I knew Baby is a girl, I was going to put a pink frill around the dge, but after peering at Ravelry for a while, I've done some rows of garter stitch and a picot bind off, which is what I did on the Blue Pinwheel I made last year.

I like this a lot - if the yarn looks hauntingly familiar, it's the same as the Distressed Sweater. It's discontinued but you can still get it at Cucumber Patch. I love it, and the blanket is very soft and cosy.
I think I might have to make one of these for myself.

There was a doco about online dating on BBC2 on Tuesday night, Wink, Meet, Delete. It was fairly light-hearted and mostly consisted of people telling their favourite stories about their experiences. They all emphasised how addictive it got for them for a while, how much time they spent clicking another photo, and another, and another. It made me very glad that I spend my time online looking for the perfect sweater rather than the perfect man.



Candles also work for other bathroom smells, so I am told. Good on for your great finds on eBay. Glad I am not selling anything!

Mary Lou said...

I made two baby blankets with that Cotton Denim Aran. Nice stuff. I was scrounging around for a few balls and found none on ebay in my color, lucky you.OK to worship at the altar of yarn, but I will NOT go look at ebay. I won't. Really.

Wanderingcatstudio said...

Oh why did you have to go an say that about ebay - I've been sooooo good about not biddding.. but now I've got to go look!

Mette said...

The trick with the burning candle is great. I am ready to throw out yarn if it smells of cigaret smoke.

Lisa R-R said...

Congratulations on your ebay success! That is an area, like etsy, which I have never started as I think I would have no self-control at all ...

The finished projects are really lovely.

Lisa in Toronto

Susan said...

ebay??? wool on ebay??? Oh nuts. I am not even going to look. I just know I would get into trouble.

Knitting Linguist said...

I think that saying "buy yarn on eBay" is like yawning - it causes anyone in the vicinity to feel an overwhelming urge to do the same (i am fighting this even as i type). Perhaps this needs further study?