It’s been a week of yarny goodness here at String.  Not only did I go on a shopping expedition on my own, but The Resident Male went on a trip to Arizona and brought me back a present.  Now this is a Big Thing because althogh he’s been supportive of my needlework obsessions over the years, he’s never before been a direct enabler of them. 

So I am picturing him at the knit shop he found out in Scottsdale, Arizona.  He says he went in and asked the committee sitting around the back project table for help selecting something unusual.  He was shown a pile of various foofy/fuzzy/overadorned novelty yarns, and being observant knowing that I rarely use them, insisted on something less "demonstrative" but still unique. 

The committee came through.  He ended up buying this:

It’s a hank of mercerized 100% cotton, hand-painted in blues, teals, and greens, with a touch of a mauved brown.  The effect when wound is a ball reads "camoflage."  It’s got a house label on it (no brand name), stating that it knits to Aran gauge (4.5spi on a US #8), and that it’s got 997 yards total.

Looking at the stuff though it reminded me of Rainbow Mills Crayons Lite, the yarn included in their "Grandma’s Little Darling" toddler sweater kits (shown here on Younger Daughter when she was three):

Sure enough, a side by side comparison of my leftovers from the sweater above and my new yarn shows that they’re near identical.  Amazingly enough not only are they structurally the same, the wind-off hank diameter is the same, and the hues of the teal, brown and khaki in the two are spot on identical (the toddler leftovers includes magenta and orange in addition to all the colors in the new stuff).  I wrote to the yarn shop, and they confirmed that the base stock for this yarn is the same as the Rainbow Mills product.   I haven’t seen Crayons Lite sold outside the toddler kits, and having a known weakness for variegated yarns, I’ve always wanted to use it again. 

For the record, to make the yarn flash in the toddler pullover, I needed to get 5spi on US #7s, and predicated the circumference on a factor of about 12.5 inches, then steek the armholes.  This sweater is done on 125 stitches (about 25 inches around).  I think that I’ll try to use my hank to make a short tee on 250 stitches, and see if I can get the same kind of flash.  I’ll use a provisional cast-on so that I can go back and add ribbing or edging later so I can maximize use of the yarn I’ve got on the body itself.   I even have enough of my coordinating (but brighter mix) leftovers to do the rib or edging, should I so desire.  If that doesn’t work and I come up short, I’ll see if I can do something on the same narrow strip principle as my Typeset Tee.

The upshot of all this is that Resident Male came back with just about the perfect choice:  a yarn that isn’t available locally, in colors that I enjoy, and in quantity that’s just right. 

Keepers, both!

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