Sunday, August 29, 2010

Good Math

Knitting Project  +  Front-Loader Washing Machine  =  Felting Success!

Have you ever heard that it's a pain in the butt or quite time-consuming and difficult to felt something in a front-loaind washing machine?  So had I.  I'm pretty sure it has something to do with the fact that unlike a top-loading machine, a front-loader has no agitator.  In the past, I've ignored any such comments and tried felting my projects in our washer, finding over and over again that it takes at least 3 tries before it gets anywhere.  This time wasn't a whole lot different, although I seriously considered taking my finished knitting to my mom's house to use her top-loader.  Except that by the time I finished it yesterday, I didn't want to make the trek over there. (She's only 5 minutes away, but it was getting late.)

So, trying not to waste water while attempting this felting, I threw in a stack of jeans with my project all wrapped up in a pillow-case.  First attempt was semi-successful, the knitting had shrunk and was on it's way, but wasn't quite where I wanted it to be.  But I felt good that I hadn't wasted a load and now have a clean stack of jeans. :)  

My next attempt, I tried the same sort of thing, this time throwing the project in with a load of towels.  And this time, my project came out perfect! :) I was so happy with the results and felt so good about doing the felting this way!  I don't know if the towels just provided that much more agitation, or if it truly was just because it was the second time around.  Either way, I'm not too bothered by having to wash it twice.  In the past all other projects have taken at least 3 washes.  And I feel like I'm not wasting all that water on just one little thing since I got 2 small loads of laundry out it as well.  (I don't know if other people do this or not, and I'm sure there's a bit of concern about getting fibers in your clothing and what not, but I feel that since the project was in a pillowcase, that wasn't as much of a problem for me.)

I've been putting my French Pressed Slippers on hold because I didn't want to face the felting fight in the washing machine.  But now I think they're going to mover further up the list! :)

On another note, yesterday we took X to a park in town.  He had so much fun playing on all the toys.  The park was busy, but not so busy it was hard to play on all the equipment.  We took the new camera and I experimented taking pictures while X was going down the slides, playing and moving around.  I'm still learning.  The pictures turned out nicely, very clear, but I'd like to learn a little bit more about how to take better pictures using the manual setting.  It's easy to take nice pictures of knitting when the object isn't moving.  But a little boy is a much different story. :)   It was great to get outside and play with X, he always hates going inside afterwards, but finally, after playing on the swings, the merry-go-round, the slides, and many other toys, he was getting hot and cranky and it was time to head for home.  I hope everyone else has had a chance to enjoy some beautiful August weather!


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