A couple of years ago, I purchased some beautiful sock yarn and started to knit a shawl (my first). This project was also my first experience with short rows. Overall, I felt unsure about my work and ultimately set aside the project for ” a short while” to work on some gifts. Fast forward to 3 years later. By this time, I had the experience to easily complete the project. However, I couldn’t find any record of where I had left off on the project and therefore could not figure out where to resume knitting. Ultimately, I frogged my work. Unfortunately, yarn has memory. My yarn was kinked from sitting in a knitted form for 3 years. I was thumbing through a copy of Vogue Knitting and found a section on reusing yarn in this situation. I put the process to test with great results. I will describe the process here.
Here is my yarn after frogging the project. Note the kinks in the fibers (yarn memory).
Step 1: Unwind the yarn. I used my umbrella swift to reverse the winding process. This step is really a 2 person job. I’m lucky to have 2 little knitters around who love to help.
Step 2: Once the whole ball is “unwound’ and around the swift, use a contrasting piece of yarn to tie around the yarn bundle in 3-4 places to secure it in shape.
Step 3: Wet the yarn. I let the yarn soak in tepid water for 20 minutes.
Step 4: Drain the water and wrap the yarn in a towel to gently remove excess water, just as you would do for a blocked item. Allow the yarn to hang and dry completely. You may hang a small weight from the bottom of the yarn loop to encourage the yarn to dry straight. I hung the yarn from a clothes-drying rack and used a small bag of coins for a light weight.
Step 5: Once the yarn is totally dry, remove the weight and place the yarn around your swift. It is ready to rewind into a ball! You can see how straight the fibers have become after completing this process.