Friday, May 25, 2007

The Yarn of Yarnnation #3

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I had always known I was nothing special, even a little strange, a misfit if you will. I mean, what do you do with a bulky weight cotton/acrylic blend? Even I didn’t know. There were those brave knitter souls who would take a ball or two home, and the rest of us would wait with fear tinged hope to hear the review. It was always the same. “It’s just too heavy,” “It’s too bulky for a baby knit,” “I just don’t know what to do with it,” “It has no drape,” and the one that hurt the most “It splits terribly!” I knew it was all true. I wondered what the people who had made us had been thinking. Like the others, I tried to console myself with the fact that I had a beautiful color, a vibrant rich red, but deep down I knew that even the most stunning color could not compensate for a poorly conceived yarn.

I sat there for months, maybe even a year or more, I wasn’t really keeping track. My heavy strands didn’t stay put in my ball, and that added to a growing depression. I spent my days trying to retreat to the back of the shelf and succumb to that fitful sleep that depression seeks.

Naturally, they were always trying to pull me forward, straighten my strands, make me look pretty, but how does one look pretty when one doesn’t feel pretty? It was after being pulled forward and straightened yet again (adding to my despondent irritation) that I noticed something strange happen. A knitter, a youngish knitter, had pulled eight balls of my Lavender sister off the shelf. That had never happened before, EIGHT balls? The girl must not know what she was doing, but I was happy for Lavender, at least she would be able to rest from all the fixing and fussing that never did any good. I didn’t give it any further thought.

That is, no further thought until four days later when the same young knitter came again to stand before our lonely shelf. She studied all of us for long while, and we looked at her with curious skepticism. Then, to my great astonishment, she pulled me off the shelf, eight balls of me, EIGHT! Was this girl mad? For the first time in months my foggy mind began to churn with questions. Where was I going? Was I going to be knit? What on earth could she have in mind for me?

I didn’t have to wait long to discover what her plans for me were. She cast on that night. She knit quickly with a circular metal needle. I can not express the ecstasy that filled my strands as she pulled me from the restrictive balls I had been wound into for so long. I would have been in heaven, if it hadn’t been for the nagging thoughts that still haunted me. “What possible use could such an unforgiving yarn have?” “When would her needles begin to pierce through me forcing me to split?” “How would I cope when the dream finally ended?”

She continued to work in a slightly strange fashion, moving me, not the needle, with her left hand instead of her right, and her needle never once split me. She worked for several hours, knitting four balls of the eight she had brought home. By the time she put me down to rest, most of my fears had been calmed. This knitter was serious about me, and somehow, she was truly crafting me into something, although, what, I did not know.

That night I could not sleep. It was dark, and I couldn’t see what her work had produced. I tried to understand the stitches by feeling where my strands were, but they were not consistent. In some places my strands were free and open to the air, in other places they were snug and pulled tight against one another. I was forced to content myself with waiting, but sleep would not come, and I didn’t wish for it.

In the morning I wondered if she would pick me right back up, or if I my patience would be tried longer. I needn’t have worried. She was still in her pajamas when she came for me, and she settled down for another long stretch of knitting.

It didn’t take long, a few more hours, and I felt her binding off. She laid me carefully across her lap and looked at me for a moment with a look of obvious joy. I still hadn’t a clue what I was, I had no seams, I recognized some ribbing, but the other stitches were varied and unknown to me. Suddenly she gleefully grabbed me, ran to the man in the house, announcing she was finished. With a smile he told her to try it on. “It’s beautiful” he proclaimed after she slipped me over her head. I was a garment? With no seams? I thought my curiosity and impatience would kill me. She didn’t make me wait much longer.

She hurried to a mirror and for the first time I saw what she had done. I was, what I had heard called a capelette, only I didn’t open in the front. She had worked me into a combination of lace and cables, the cables taking advantage of my stiff structure and the lace keeping me from being too heavy. If I could have cried I would have.

I was. . . beautiful. Me.

The next day she wore me back to the shop. I saw my sisters and brothers, and still none of us could believe it. They had seen Lavender. She had been worked into the same beautiful garment, and returned to live in the yarn shop as a sample. She would help other knitters understand what her brothers and sisters could do! I also took every opportunity to show myself off to other knitters. I wouldn’t have thought it possible, but the joy I felt at seeing my sister Ecru and my brother Moss go home with knitters to become the same beautiful capelette was even greater than the joy I felt for myself.

I was taken home, carefully folded, and placed on a shelf with many other hand knits. There were sweaters knit from wool and alpaca, items crafted of soft cotton and even silk. I knew I wasn’t knit from fine fibers like most of them were, but I had become more than I ever thought I could be. My delight at just being me could not be dampened.

I was pulled down often and I went to church and other special events. She took me on vacation and she even wore me once to an event where she sung in front of hundreds of people. I was so nervous and excited! I knew I was one of her favorites and I loved her for it. I vowed to do all in my power to serve her the best I could. I was careful to avoid snags, I held my color to me with all my might when I was washed, and I did my best to always hold my shape.

I don’t know how it happened. I guess it is true that sometimes fait just gives you all you could dream of and more. I know it doesn’t always happen this way, I’m not so naive, but I do know that it can happen because it happened to me, and my joy is complete.


Naturally a random commenter will be sent a little Yarn of Yarnnation, but it will not be this yarn. I will be intrested to see if you can guess it though, it's not as easy as Cascade 220 was!

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