Machine Washable Mishaps…..


And Happy Thursday to you!  Even though I’ve been posting quite frequently lately, I wanted to post the scarf I finished last week, otherwise time will go by and like many other projects, I’ll forget to post it and it will never see the light of day!

A couple of weeks before I learned to spin, I was in a total creative slump, I’m not sure what caused it, maybe the six pairs of socks I knitted in a row… Suddenly it seemed that there was nothing in the world to make apart from socks and I couldn’t face another one, so there was nothing for me to make!  I tried lots of patterns and rabbited them… so much rabbiting, it was destroying my fragile self-esteem and I needed an intervention… a project that was at my skill level, made from yarn that excited me… so I hunted through my queue on ravelry and found THIS!  I then hunted through my stash and decided to make it with two lovely skeins of 10ply Malabrigo Rios, colourway Solis… I bought it recently with the intention of making a pretty scarf and was quite surprised to be honest, that I actually did because I get quite attached to my stash…

This is a lovely pattern, it’s so easy to make and knitted up very quickly thanks to the 10ply goodness.  For the first time in a fortnight, I made something without rabbiting it and it was wonderful!  Want to see?

But as you know, I had a little accident with this, because I have forewarned you that I was upset with machine washable wool… Now I just want to claim, that I am not meaning to offend any fans of machine washable wool out there, if you love it and think it is the best thing since interchangable circular needles, then I’m totally thrilled for you… this crafty business is individual and about pleasure!

I’m just a bit bitter, I’ll admit it.  Instead of blaming myself for not swatching and knitting it with needles bigger than my intuition told me to, it’s much easier for me to blame the wool.

Wool dramas aside, want to hear what happened?!

My beautiful scarf… I was so deeply proud of it when I cast off those last 11 stitches I was in love, but of course it needed blocking, so I put it in a sink full of warm water with some chemical free soap, as I do with everything I make… so far so good… until I went to take it OUT of the sink…

Has something you’ve made ever actually GROWN in your hands?

“oh my god” I whimpered as I started dragging it from the sink, pulling what seemed like miles and miles of stocking stitch from the water…

“Oh my GOD” I cried frantically, watching my carefully knitted leaves begin to resemble palm fronds and my stocking stitch turn into what looked like lace….

Finally I managed to drag it out of the water and spun it in the machine.  I then blocked it, trying to make it smaller, but no love… the scarf spanned my lounge floor.  Admittedly, my lounge is small, but still…

It was at this point that I realised the same had happened with another cowl I made from machine washable wool a few months ago which I never got around to blogging and I decided that was it for me… I can’t take it anymore, no more projects from machine washable wool.  Apart from the cascade 220 in my wardrobe…

But all’s well that ends well, and I have a good sense of humour… these things happen and once it dried the scarf was awesome and I’ve worn it pretty much every day since, so I must like it!

In fact, I think I love it….

And hey, it could be worse!  It could have been a cardigan!  So what projects have you had turn into disasters?  Humor me and tell me some funny stories!!!

Big thanks to the lovely Liz Abinante for the pattern, it rocks.

OK, I’m off to do other things, I’ve been staring at the computer screen for far too long today!  Wishing you a lovely beginning to your weekend!


About Crochet with Raymond

I'm a crochet obsessed, reiki master, crystal healing, yoga junkie, counselling student, in a happy long term relationship... and Raymond's mum!
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45 Responses to Machine Washable Mishaps…..

  1. Karyn says:

    It is too beautiful & too soft not to wear everyday – i know i have seen it in real life. I love the pattern too.

  2. Sarah says:

    I think it looks fabulous! The colour is really good on you and it looks very snuggly🙂

    If you think that was a disaster, have a look at a post from last week. Needless to say this has been ‘rabbited’ AGAIN since writing it

    Enjoy the rest of your week xxxxx

  3. Colette says:

    But it does look fab!! Just about to start on another of your granny cowls. Found some cheap Noro, Bliss!! have a lovely week.

  4. Leah says:

    I made my sister a pair of felted wool slippers. She loves them lots and wears them everyday. That was until her husband decided to do the laundry and toss them in with the towels. Needless to say they shrunk beyond belief. He stated that he did not know that wool shrunk, “have you ever seen a sheep that had its fur to tight?” was he justification.

  5. Catherine says:

    There is no way that beautiful scarf could be a disaster. It is stunning. Well done. Hugs to Raymond too – he is so handsome.

  6. Carole says:

    I LOVE it – the pattern is gorgeous and the colour really suits you! I’m also loving your hair – I have/had curly hair but years of straightening has left the ends wild and it only really curls at the back and the roots now. I wish I was brave enough to have it all cropped off and to throw my GHD’s in the bin so I could get my curls back.

    I spent most of yesterday ripping back ripples, not once but twice – serves me right for trying to crochet while watching Kylie strutting her stuff on the TV the night before🙂

    Carole xXx

  7. MeredithJean says:

    Great story Alice – ha you love it – that’s the screamer punchline!
    The very first Real Thing I ever knitted when I was 9, which wasn’t a ‘cast on 40 stitches and garter a scarf’, was a short sleeved cardigan for my Susan ‘bride’ doll. I had the pattern (still do!) and worked my way through it all by myself (well maybe with a bit of assistance from my Super Capable Wonderful Mother). It was a pale green, the colour they used to paint walls in government offices, and although we bought the recommended quantity, I needed more. You guessed it, my doll’s cardigan grew and grew, combo of loose knitting and undoubted errors, and became a cardigan that fitted…. ME! I wasn’t sure whether to be embarrassed or proud. Either way, it was exciting to have made a real item of clothing. I threw it out in disgust in my teens, but feel so fond of the memory now.

  8. Diemie says:

    It is a lovely scarf Alice, the colors and the pattern are just so wonderful🙂
    Especially the edging! Oh and I just love your hair!
    Have a great day! Love from Holland!

  9. Regula says:

    Your scarf looks great to me!

    I once had a bathing suit that “grew” when I went into water. I’ve never had such a beautiful bathing suit since then.

  10. ohangelina says:

    what a cutiebug you are..i love the scarf. are the photos taken before or after el accidente?
    i’m trying desperately to finish a crocheted blanket i started a year ago..i’m cleaning out the closet.
    i’ve got some colinette jitterbug superwash here..i havent made anything yet. now i’m skeerd🙂

  11. Susan Wright says:

    Hi Alice, That scarf is gorgeous.I will be looking on Ravelry after this.
    My cardigan disaster is an ongoing project of two years now. The yarn is lovely ,the pattern interesting with some lovely cable detail. But i have made (recently because i was determined to finish it) a very long sleeve, very long!
    Now i have run out of yarn (see sleeve) and have ordered a extra ball and of course its a totally different dye lot. I feel like throwing the whole thing out of the window. I wont of course but its in danger of discouraging me from this wonderful creative process that i adore.

    I am just off to look at Ravelry now you have inspired us again.
    Love Susan xx

  12. Gorgeous scarf, love the colours, looks perfect to me.

  13. Karen says:

    Can’t see why it caused you any grief from here!!!! It looks gorgeous and your stitches are always so neat and uniform, well done! Your hair looks great too!!! xxxx

  14. Tickety-boo says:

    No wonder you love it so much it’s gorgeous! I had the opposite problem, I made a crocheted shawl in super wash wool that shrunk, had to give it to my daughter it won’t go round me now😦
    Yours still looks stunning though Alice.
    Love Tickety-boo

  15. Anne Marie says:

    I love the scarf. It looks great on you with a simple jeans/T outfit. A lovely picture altogether with your fab hair.

    I wonder if you could think of what I could do with an Easy Yo container, for making yoghourt, which I think would look nice covered over and also would insulate it more. As it’s tall and cylindrical, would a crochet cover be better than a knitted one? I have visions of flowers at the top too? Any ideas anyone please?

  16. Peeriemoot says:

    Ooooh, that’s lovely! Oddly enough I was looking at that pattern a few days ago – is it really quite easy then? I’m a coward when it comes to lace!

  17. I love that shawl and it doesn’t look like it grew?? My aunty used to tell me about a jumper that she knitted for her husband that used to grow everytime she had finished it and he put it on for a trial run…grew in front of her eyes she said. she reckons she knitted that jumper about 6 times!! Speaking of machine wash are your socks machine wash wool? Do you machine wash or hand wash them?? 🙂

  18. kiwiyarns says:

    Your Sayoran is gorgeous. And I think it’s actually much nicer in the larger size. Have a cosy weekend wrapped up in your very pretty scarf. xx

  19. Well it turned out beautifully in the end… gorgeous colour too! Thanks for the link … duely saved in my “one day” file…. :)x

  20. Ali says:

    Your scarf looks gorgeous – despite the blocking disaster!! It doesn’t look like a disaster to me – it looks awesome. I have one skein of Malabrigo Rios (in Teal Feather) but I don’t know what to knit with it – it’s too beautiful!).

    One of my disasters (and I’m sure there have been many) was a Shalom I knitted for myself, but using the wrong ply yarn. At the time I had no idea about ply and needle size and how it affected the outcome of the project, so I knitted merrily away until finished. Then I tried it on. Uhoh! Waaaay too small for me. Luckily it fitted my daughter, so she wears it all the time now (she’s 9!), lol!! Here’s a link to it:

  21. Tas says:

    Luckily pretty forgiving of a sudden increase in size! It is beautiful. I am stil learning all about wool traits and blocking and how things can change suddenly when you get them wet and block them..esp if the cats decide that is their new bed but let’s just paw it a little here first to make it nice and comfie…

  22. Barbara Reichard says:

    Oh Alice,you make me smile. Your cowl/scarf/rug is beautiful. The colors are so warm, who cares that it grew. My Cat Herman sends regards to Raymond.
    Barbara, usa

  23. Carol says:

    Your story did make me chuckle but I think the resultant shawl/cowl/scarf looks wonderful. Love your amazing hair.
    Carol xx

  24. Catlady says:

    Machine Washable Wool…. Sadly, yes, for me it *was* a cardigan… The sleeves have grown, so that I need to turn up the cuff… But, I did find… If I machine wash, then machine dry until still damp, then block to air dry the rest of the way, it is bearable… Love your blog.🙂 check it daily!

  25. Annette says:

    I’m loving the colors of your scarf! It’s sooooo awful to have hours of toil and trouble ruined by a mishap! I made a Queen Anne Scarf – and mind you, I’m very new to the world of crochet – so the scarf was very intricate and fiddly for my then inexperienced crochet hook! I used a wonderful sport yarn that had a gorgeous silky sheen to it and was very proud of it, however, the edges were curling and it definitely needed to be blocked. I had never blocked before so took to the internet for ways to do it. I think I read that sugar water worked well, so that was what I used. Either I didn’t execute the proportions properly, or I didn’t read the method properly, but I ended up with a sticky, nasty mess. And the silky sheen of my project was gone. I ended up rinsing out the solution and while I lost the stickiness, I did NOT regain the sheen. I am disgusted with it and it’s been relegated to a box in the closet where it sits in shame. Now I’m SCARED to death to block anything! LOL x&O, Annette

  26. penelope dubois says:

    Oh, its so totally beautiful! I want one!
    I found Dream in Color, Classy tends to grow. It’s so scary when you take it out of the sink, and this huge mass is practically alive!
    I really need to swatch and wash my projects, before starting. You never know!

  27. Cuckoo says:

    It looks magic to me! It looks wonderful on you.

    Thank you for your frogging/stitch rescue tips the other day. I think i need to do some practice pieces. Just need more hours in the day!

  28. Carolyn says:

    Ahh, machine washable wool. ay ay ay! The colors on your scarf are great and the longer the better, so alls well that ends well! My last machine-washable wool was an utter disaster for the opposite reason. I made a sweater with it (admittedly cheap yarn, first mistake) for my husband for Valentine’s day and washed it in the machine to block it (second mistake) and when I took it out it had FELTED!! ‘CRUD!’ (edited version), I shouted. I stretched and stretched but it was too dense to budge. I blocked it with pins hoping for the best, but when I husband put it on it hung away from his body like he was wearing a barrel. My son, looking on, said, “why didn’t you just make him a normal sweater?” ouch.

  29. ferabeth says:

    So this one time I tried to make a rag rug out of Husband’s old t-shirts… it took six months, several bottles of wine, and a will of steel not to just catch the darn thing on fire! (I blogged about it, of course). =)

  30. Alyson says:

    Regardless, it still turned out beautiful! I love Malabrigo wool. I’m working on a cardigan for my daughter in Brisa (pinks and purples!). I’ve been too afraid to try wet blocking. Since this wasn’t lace, I spray/steam blocked the pieces.

    As far as mishaps and mayhem, my story comes from my first pair of socks. I had successfully turned the heel, and I was trying to work the foot, but somehow something wasn’t right, and I couldn’t figure it out, so I took it to the LYS for help. It took the two owners about an hour to get it straightened out. I’m still not sure what went wrong, but I had ended up working on SIX needles! They asked me how it happened, and I said I didn’t know, but I realized what was happening when I started get poked and stabbed by the flurry of needles! Anyway, they set me straight, and I finished the socks. They were far from perfect, but I was proud of them!

    P.S. I LOVE your new yarn! Gorgeous colors, and clever names!🙂

  31. Penelope says:

    Alice what a stunning scarf it sooo suites you and no matter about mishaps it’s just gorgeous and I think I may well have just been inspired to add this to my queue too xox Your post did make me smile and unfortunately I have had a little shrinkage of a certain pair of socks going on in this household. I think a certain little persn may well be wearing my adult size 6 socks! Love love that malabrigo xox love and hugs from the northern hemisphere, Penelope

  32. Meredith says:

    Ah Alice……..Do I have a story for you. I wrote about this in 2009, and it still hurts!!!!
    Go and have yourself a look, Noro-sweater disaster.
    By the way love your scarf, itf it is bigger it looks like a lovely shawl.

  33. Disa says:

    Hello there, find my way here somehow and i like your blog very much!! And the shawl is lovely! =)

  34. dutch margreet says:

    superwash reacts differently to too warm/hot and too cold. In my experience you have to wash on the temperature that is on the wrap it comes in. (the paper thing folded around it with the name etc. on it). My biggest disaster I still regret is my beautiful shawl, knitted from Malabrigo in a creamy white very timetaking lacepattern. I washed it and it was gorgeous, took it out of the soapy water and into rinsing water. It shrink and shrink and . well, it ended up 1/3 of its original size in just under 10 seconds. Now it fits a four year old but is cardboard like hard. What I did not know then is that the watertemperature needs to be the same throughout the whole process! Now I have and no need to rinse but I surely am on the lookout for a babybath thermometre in thriftstores, eh maybe better buy a new one. Make a little swatch if you have some yarn left and try out how to shrink it just a little, so you can shrink the shawl too. But my Malabrigo shawl, like in the song :”someone left my cake out in the rain.. and I’ll never make another one again” not out of malabrigo anyway, other shawls, yes.

  35. Melissa says:

    Oh my goodness! I’ve had more mishaps than I’ve had successes. The first sweater I ever crocheted is hiding in the bottom of my closet. I made my gauge swatch and everything appeared to be on track. As I continued to make the sweater, I didn’t notice that my tension was tighter on the sweater than the swatch. What was supposed to be a medium sweater turned out to be a small….sigh….If I could just get rid of those last 20 lbs – Ha Ha🙂

    The scarf is lovely and looks delightfully snuggily. Have a lovely afternoon!

  36. Jeanne says:

    When I was a young mother, I decided to crochet my baby a crib blanket. This was, of course, before I knew anything about yarn and all I ever used was acrylic (it came in really pretty colors!). I made one large granny square and it was perfectly-sized. It fit the width of the baby’s crib.

    Well, before giving it to the baby, I thought it needed washing. So, I put it in the washing machine and then into the dryer…. When I pulled it out of the dryer, I almost fell down with shock! It had grown, exponentially! It went from being crib width, to being twin-sized-bed width! I had to fold it, to make it fit in the crib!

  37. Julie says:

    It looks perfect to me and modelled so beautifully too

  38. Elisabeth says:

    It is a really beautiful scarf! Nice shape.

  39. Your scarf is beautiful! I love the yarn color, too. 🙂

  40. Toot Sweet says:

    I have done many knit projects that were to be felted once done. Never has any of these felted projects turned out looking good. I vow to never felt again. 8)

  41. Anything with yarn is an adventure unto itself! It turned out just beautiful in the end and that is what mattered; so happy for you oxox🙂

  42. Siri says:

    Lovely scarf, despite stretching🙂

    I made a hat for a friend out of superwash yarn. It was huuuge when I pulled it out of the water. I gave it to her anyway, and she’s using it as a lap top cover…

  43. Victoria says:

    Your scarf is gorgeous!

  44. I shouldn’t laugh should I Alice!!!!!!!!!!! Sorry, it’s just the way you told it, it was very funny. I wonder if Raymond thought you were making a blanket for him before you dried it?! Still, if I hadn’t known it wasn’t meant to look like that, I wouldn’t have known any better, because it just looks fab (so does your hair too by-the-way!). You’ve got a wonderful scarf there, I bet it will be worn non-stop, ‘cos it’s gorgeous! All’s well that ends well, such a lame quote that isn’t it! Love Vanessa xxx

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