Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Colorwork Teddy: My Swatch Is Called An Arm

Small pieces make good swatches, because that's all swatches are.  Hence the absurd number of dishcloths and afghan squares conscientious knitters tend to make.  (For those who don't know, swatches are small pieces of knitting made to determine whether the pattern is good for the yarn, figure out what size needles you'll need to make the right size garment, and become at least somewhat familiar with the stitch pattern.  They're a good idea, but most people seem to hate making them.)

Someone commented recently that her sweater swatches are called sleeves, which made many people laugh.  Mostly because it's true.  A sweater sleeve is a small piece of the larger object, making it a useful and decent swatch.  I think many more people do this than they would like to admit.

Well, my swatch is called an arm.  The arm is the smallest piece of my teddy bear pattern, and I usually start with them because of that.  I pretty much don't care what gauge I get, because they all turn out unique.  In this case, I was swatching for color.

I'm making a teddy bear now, for a friend's brother who has been fifteen since February.  (Bad Lissa.  Get on the ball.)  Said brother is an artist, so I wanted to do some sort of colorwork.  What I ended up with?  Stripes.

Don't laugh.  I'm using absurdly bright variegated rainbow yarn, and a nice medium brown to calm the poor thing down (so it doesn't end up looking like this).  And because of the way garter stitch works, it actually looks pretty cool.  See?  (I'm aware the color quality is pretty terrible.)

Click to get a closer look

The other side looks like this:


I prefer the first one.  I think.  I'm not sure.  What do you think?  The spread-out stripes, or the ones snugged up next to each other?

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