Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Washcloth Saga

Knitting Machine
Originally uploaded by Project Pictures
Back in February I picked up a hobby knitting machine by Singer. The Machine Knitters group on Ravelry was a huge help, talking about different options available--most of which were far outside my need and price-range. Even the Sweater Machine available at Ben Franklin (and JoAnne Fabrics) was far more than I really wanted.

I wasn't really sure if machine knitting would be a "thing" for me. After all, I do enjoy the process of knitting. Even more I enjoy the finished product, but using the machine illustrates to me that I do really like the tactile activity of knitting.

Still, that said, it's a handy bit of equipment.

I love my hand-knit washcloths. In fact, a washcloth is the very first project I ever made. My grandmother and mother visited soon after I moved to Oregon, and they brought with them bamboo needles and Peaches 'n' Cream yarn, and a new knitter was created. Unfortunately, my nice, clean washcloths seem to end up in a ball in the bottom of the sink far too often. It doesn't take long before they start to stink. Vinegar and bleach do some to kill the smell, but invariably it comes back.

Machine-Knit Washcloth
Originally uploaded by Project Pictures
Today I figured I'd try a machine-knit washcloth. It took about ten minutes to get the hang of the machine again. After that it was hardly another ten before I was binding it off and cleaning up the cast-on edge. It may or may not take over my hand-knit cloths for a time, until I run out of socks, shawls and other projects to finish that deserve more personal attention. A hand-knit washcloth still has more personality (and at my gauge is a bit firmer-made than this machine-knit version) and it doesn't take terribly long to make one. Still, it's time I'd prefer to put into other projects right now.

And maybe a in a couple more years I may manage to train DH to not leave my hand-knit goods balled up in the bottom of the sink!!

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