F If at First You Don’t Succeed…. | tamdoll's workspace

If at First You Don’t Succeed….

January 31, 2012

… try, try again.

click to see bigger picture -Tamdoll

As soon as I saw the Lorna’s Laces Solemate yarn, I wanted to work with it. There was a lot of appeal: there was the cleverly named color Zombie BBQ; the promised warmth of the insulating technology of the 30% Outlast® fiber content; and of course the endearing way Mr. Tamdoll called it “Soul – é  – matte” when I pointed it out to him in the store… like it was something exotic and foreign.

Let me say now – these are not good reasons to buy 425 yard skeins of sock yarn when you have no intention of making socks.

My first project attempt (1) was a cowl.  A lacy, intricate pattern that after 2 or 3 attempts I decided weren’t worth the effort because you couldn’t see the lace through the color changes of the yarn.  And seriously, it would take a really, really long time to knit all that on size 2 needles.  So after a few days of project seeking & brainstorming… even considering sock making!.. I thought of making the yarn into a cord. 

I pulled out my little cord maker and figured that 425 yards would give me about 100 yards of workable, much thicker yarn.  

Two movies and many, many cranks of the handle later…. I ended up with 29 yards of cord (2). Only 29!!!!  Well, now I felt stuck that I would have to unravel it all, because what the heck do you make with only 29 yards?   Well, you can see from pictures (3) & (4) that I made it work.  For picture (3), I used size 50 needles, cast on 5 & knit away.  It was too loose and ropy looking, so I tried size 35 needles for picture (4).  Casting on 7 stitches worked perfect for it and now I have a roomy cowl to keep me warm. 

I am so, so pleased!  It’s really unique this way, but I’m beginning to wonder with all the thinking, winding, knitting and re-knitting, if working all 425 yards on size 2 needles would have been quicker in the end?  

I think that I came to the cord idea by looking at lots of projects made with chunky yarns, and I had the Embellish-Knit! nearby on my desk.  Somehow my brain put the ideas together & I’m glad it did.  Do you ever come up with ideas and don’t know where they came from?  or use your materials in unexpected ways?


  1. I love to make braids with yarn but I have so little time to "fool around". I'm going to ask a fellow craft market seller to teach me to knit a cord soon. Hopefully I won't give up.

  2. What a clever little machine you've got! I like the way the multi-colors ended up being in blocks -- it makes the colors flow nicely in your cowl.

  3. I'm glad you got a great project that you love in the end :) I hate when these things happen, but as you showed...it can be better in the end :)

  4. Wow, so clever! It looks great. I, for one, am too clumsy and impatient to work with tiny needles. The cord idea is brilliant.

  5. The numbers don't make sense to me but that is great you were able to use the yarn!

    Artful Rising

  6. Wow...that turned out really nicely Tammy! I think making the I cord first was really a great idea. I wouldn't have had the patients to deal with it either- worsted weight is the smallest I'll go!!

  7. That is very cool yarn! I like the rope yarn you made from it. What perseverance you had to try all these various techniques. In the end, your project is gorgeous!
    I've made mistakes that I've ended up liking better than the original plan.

  8. Dearest sweet tammy, you are so talented!! I love the color of this yarn and it looks great! Have a lovely merry happy week and love to you!

  9. How cool is that! I had to go off and buy the tool. : )

    Glad you're on the healing side and feeling well enough to create. Take your time and let the Mr. spoil you.

  10. That's a great tool you have there! The so-called error you encountered turned out to be serendipity!


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