con•flict (kŏnˈflĭktˌ)
n.A state of open, often prolonged fighting; a battle or war.
n.A state of disharmony between incompatible or antithetical persons, ideas, or interests; a clash.
n. Psychology A psychic struggle, often unconscious, resulting from the opposition or simultaneous functioning of mutually exclusive impulses, desires, or tendencies.*


Yep, that pretty much sums it up.

After seeing a lovely Holbrook Shawl in person, I was excited to start one right away, and began searching through my stash. I knew the pattern would look better with a solid yarn, but I really didn’t have anything in my stash in fingering weight that would work. The closest I could come was this madelinetosh tosh merino light, which is a semi-solid:

madelinetosh tosh merino light - Thyme

The skeins looked very well matched, and I figured the semi-solid would probably be OK. I wound one of the skeins and did a little swatch. A bit more variegation than I’d like, but not too bad. I figured it would work, and was chomping at the bit to start. But then I wound the second skein.

Madelinetosh Tosh Merino Light

Can you tell from the photo? The cake on the left is definitely a little darker than the one on the right.

The darker skein is lighter in the center and gets darker as towards the outside of the cake – so if I knit with the lighter skein first, then started with the lighter end of the darker skein, it might transition OK. Or not. Since the border is knit on sideways, if the yarn suddenly gets darker, it could create a weird patch.

I definitely wouldn’t want to alternate skeins and have it look striped.

Le sigh.

I do have some laceweight yarn in solid red that I could use, but I really wanted to do this shawl in fingering weight.

Do I forge ahead with the madelinetosh and hope it turns out OK? Use my laceweight? Buy more yarn, despite having overflowing stash? And if so, what to buy that’s truly solid? I do have some sportweight yarn in solid dark brown and solid natural (light beige), but they’re both in a rustic wool that I’m not sure I’d love as a shawl.

I feel much too conflicted.

I guess I’ll have to just make eat cookies.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

*Definitions from Wordnik

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14 Responses to Conflicted

  1. Gretchen says:

    Whenever I’m “conflicted” about matching a yarn and a pattern, I just buy more yarn! If you start with the pattern, buy the yarn that fits. If you start with the yarn in your stash, get a pattern that will work with the yarn. That said, I think your Mad Tosh yarn should be treated as 2 separate projects – you’ll never like them together in one project. And the cookies were a great idea!

  2. kiwiyarns says:

    As I’m fresh from a yarn dye lot disaster, I think you would regret knitting it in your beautiful MadTosh. I agree with your analysis that the colour transition could go awfully in that pattern.
    Nothing for it – you’ll just have to buy more yarn!! 😀

  3. Anne says:

    You could always overdye the whole thing when you are done to even out the color.

    But you should definitely have another (few) cookies while you think about it….. Those seem to help decision-making at my house.

  4. zeneedle says:

    I see no conflict….just a yarn excursion in your future. Do the right thing and get the right yarn. You’ll be happier!

  5. Stacey says:

    Buy the right yarn for a project you love. COOKIES!

  6. pacalaga says:

    I vote with Anne. Knit it then overdye if you don’t like it.

  7. susan says:

    You should buy more yarn. Otherwise you’ll be disappointed in the outcome. Or you could trade with a friend who also has an overflowing stash.

  8. Marilyn says:

    You’ve probably already decided what to do but I say start out with new fresh yarn so you don’t have any unwelcome color surprises.
    Yummy cookies!!

  9. Rachel says:

    I will not try the Madelinetosh, will either buy new yarn or go with lace. It is a too nice yarn to be disappointed with the garment you create with it! You must use it for a project you are going to love.

  10. Kym says:

    Cookies always work to ease the stress of a conflict! (Buy the yarn.)

  11. monikita45 says:

    In this instance, I think I would recommend first eating cookies, then buying just the right yarn. It is such a pretty pattern, and if nothing in the stash is “just right”, it is perfectly suitable to purchase more yarn. Right? Right!

  12. Pingback: A plan. | CabledSheep

  13. Chris says:

    Mmm… cookies.

  14. Cookie says:

    That is the issue I have with that dyer. Okay. That’s ONE issue I have with that dyer. Loving what you’ve worked out. Now I want cookies…

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