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View Full Version : Goodbye scarf! (eta: Washing Knits disasters)


pointy_teeth
11-21-2009, 08:01 PM
I know I haven't been on this forum for a while but I just wanted to get this off my chest and I know the people here would understand.

I knitted my mom the Gossamer Stars scarf from IK. It was supposed to be a very early birthday present (her birthday is on December and I gave her the scarf last month).

She washed the scarf by hand today and I saw it hanging to dry and thought nothing of it. I told her when I gave her the scarf that it is hand wash only. And I figured she understood it meant no dryer either.

So there I was minding my own business for a few hours. She comes to my room and shows me the ruined scarf! She tells me, "Oh, I only put it on low heat in the dryer. Even my other sweater that I put in the same dryer looks horrible now!"

Oh, I just wanted to cry then and there but for some reason I held back. I was a bit angry too! All that work and just the fact that it was made of Malabrigo Silky Merino! It also just makes me feel like my work wasn't appreciated, though I know my mom does. I know she regrets what happened. I just don't want to talk to her right now because I'm too pissed off.


:waah: I am crying as I type this post, silly as that sounds. At least I can remind myself how beautiful the scarf turned out from the photos I took of it when it was blocking. Would it be selfish of me to only want to knit for myself after this?

meowmeowmeow
11-21-2009, 08:09 PM
Oh wow :( I'm sorry for your loss.

I guess I don't have as much to worry about since I use acrylic for my family. This year though, just to be safe...I'm including care instructions typed onto index cards at the bottom of every gift box. I really don't want to get that "OMG OMG OMG I ruined it!" call D:

Edit: And it's not selfish to only want to knit for yourself from now on. Knitting a gift is not just handing a garment off, it's handing off hours of your time.

WandaT
11-21-2009, 09:23 PM
Wow ... what a sad story!! So sorry!!! (((HUGS))) You have every right to be disappointed and angry even if it was an accident. And I'm sure I would feel the same way about wanting to only knit for myself right now. Yes, we do understand your frustration. In time, however, you'll put it behind you and won't be so angry about it. I know that doesn't help right now though.

Jan in CA
11-21-2009, 10:28 PM
Aww, I'm sorry. :hug: Being a mom I know how badly I'd feel and I would never do anything like that on purpose and I'm sure she didn't either. Try to forgive her for both your sakes and consider it a lesson learned. Only washable yarn for mom from now on. There are some beautiful washable wools and of course even some nice acrylics.

bambi
11-21-2009, 11:49 PM
So Sorry! It was a lovely scarf. I try to use something machine washable for nearly everything, esp in case DH gets to the laundry before I do.

Crycket
11-22-2009, 12:09 AM
*hugs* sorry to hear about the scarf...you did a really good job!

ArtLady1981
11-22-2009, 12:28 AM
Ah geez, that is awful on so many levels. Awful for you, that your hard work is up-in-smoke, awful for her that she ruined her daughter's gift-of-love, and awful for the scarf: it's workmanship and it's quality yarn is gone!

I'll bet your mom feels worse than you do. Or, I hope she does!
I would! I'd feel like crawling into a hole and dying if one of my daughter's knit me a Malabrigo Silky Merino scarf and I ruined it by my carelessness. Cuz that's what it was, carelessness. Not on purpose. The ruining of the scarf could have easily been avoided by asking.

I feel for you! :hug:
I feel for your mother, too!
I feel for the scarf!

No, don't quit knitting for others. But take the suggestion to 'gift' acrylic hand-knits. There are a lot of excellent washable acrylic yarns available. Reserve the Malabrigo for yourself!

Mike
11-22-2009, 02:16 AM
Bummer. I have to go washable for myself because I know eventually everything will either get stained or end up in the drier.

I also don't knit for others. I may make something with nobody in mind that I have no use for and give it away but predetermined is too much pressure even if I'm the only one who knows about it.
I'll understand if you no longer knit for others. Ultimately you're knitting for yourself so if knitting for others doesn't give you joy don't do it.

pointy_teeth
11-22-2009, 02:09 PM
I just want to thank everybody for your kind and comforting words. I got quite emotional yesterday when it happened. I know I'll get over it.

If anything good is to come of this, I suppose it is the fact that I get to knit for myself using soft, yummy, natural fiber yarns. And leave the machine washable or acrylic yarns for others. I'm sure I can live with that. :teehee:

globaltraveler
11-22-2009, 04:48 PM
There's quite a few lovely lovely yarns that are superwash merinos and such, though still not good for the dryer. But prolly acrylics are best from here on out for the mom (and anyone else she does wash for!).

Bummer. Such a beautiful scarf, too...

Lighting57
11-22-2009, 05:05 PM
Could you further felt the scarf and make into some other item perhaps?

brolie
11-22-2009, 06:26 PM
that scarf was BEAUTIFUL!!! truly beautiful

at least she washed it though.. ive given scarves as presents and they always end up on the floor in my house.. or in a closet somewhere.. my older brother brought me mine back and left it crammed under some jackets so i wouldnt notice right away... went OUT OF HIS WAY to give it back ...

needless to say, i have a ton of scarves for ME now.. but i still make them for people.. i just ask them if they will wear it if i make it.. my older brother had begged and bothered me to finish his and then did that..

meowmeowmeow
11-23-2009, 06:57 AM
needless to say, i have a ton of scarves for ME now.. but i still make them for people.. i just ask them if they will wear it if i make it.. my older brother had begged and bothered me to finish his and then did that..


DDDDDD:

THE A$$ES that would have had feet in them if someone did that to me! Lucky for me most people who know me live in fear of my shortness; and ability to contain and release giant bursts of energy; flail like a maniac; and curse in Spanish >: (

brolie
11-23-2009, 11:10 AM
haha... most people fear me in a similar way (my cursing is in german though).. but i just shrug and brush it off. sure it bothers me but if they arent gonna wear the scarf they are not gonna wear the scarf... fortunately, im getting pretty fast at knitting so with size 12 needles it doesnt take that long ..

pointy_teeth
11-23-2009, 07:51 PM
Lighting57: It could still work as a scarf, only it's much shorter and the details, like the eyelets and stuff are pretty much gone. I might work as some type of cowl with a pin or such, but I'll leave that up to my mom.

Brolie: Giving it back to you is probably a better alternative than the scarf not getting any use and collecting dust. I made my brother a hat that was made of wool and he ended up machine washing it. Good thing it was somewhat big to begin with so it ended up fitting him perfectly after it shrunk. Before he washed it though, he kept wearing it wrong side out!

Off topic but a funny story, my dad is very picky when it comes to giving him gifts so my siblings and I usually just get him a shirt. We once bought him an Abercrombie & Fitch shirt and he made us return it because he didn't like the big a$$ tag on the back! :teehee: If you are familiar with A&F they do have huge sewn on tags that are at least 3 in. x 3 in. right in the middle of the back. I guess he was bothered by the tag scratching his back. No surprise gifts for him anymore. If his birthday or X-mas rolls around we just ask him what he really wants and that's what we give him.

Sknitter56
11-23-2009, 08:04 PM
Pointy teeth, you have my sympathies. I bet your heart fell down around your feet when you saw your scarf. I'm sure your mom feels just as bad, I know I would.
My husband not only washed, but dried a sweater that I had knit with 100% merino wool. This sweater has cables up the front and down both sleeves and a cable around the arm holes and the rest of the sweater was in seed stitch...it took me 2 years off and on to finish that sweater. I wore it maybe 3 times. I almost literally got sick when I opened the dryer and saw this really really small green thing in there....which turned out to be my sweater. He felt worse than I did...and I felt bad for him. Accidents happen.
Save the malabrigo for yourself. I just received 4 hanks that I finally broke down and bought and now I'm just waiting to see what they want to be.

AngelaR
11-23-2009, 08:31 PM
Oh, ouch! I don't blame you for wanting to knit only for yourself. I usually put a sheet with washing and care instructions with the things that I knit. Too many times I've had friends tell me that such and such was ruined in the wash. Makes me want to growl. I've even taken to buying care tags and sewing them in to no avail. So I've stopped knitting for people I know don't care and/or don't pay attention to washing instructions.

Your mother probably meant no harm and I know that doesn't make it feel better. Just forgive her and move on. that was a beautiful scarf.

lulubell
11-23-2009, 09:59 PM
Poor you! Poor Mum! Poor, poor scarf! Mum is probably in the habit of chucking everything in the dryer and just didn't think. But, how hearbreaking for you. I think I would lay face down in my room and BAWL my eyes out, then try to get over it. It has happened, it cannot be unfelted.

But I would NEVER knit her something that could be ruined in the washer or dryer again!

pointy_teeth
11-23-2009, 10:16 PM
Sknitter56: I'm sorry to hear about your sweater! From the sound of it, it seems lovely with the cables and other details.

AngelaR: I forgive my mom. I can hear in her voice that she does regret what happened.

Lulubell: You are right. She didn't think anything would happen especially since she only put it in "low heat." I guess you can't blame her (and the other people we knit for) entirely as she doesn't know how the felting process works and how natural fibers react.

I told my sister about what happened and she was disappointed as well. It was my sister who purchased the yarn and when my mom saw me knitting the scarf she wanted to know if she could have it. I told her it was not my yarn and my sister said it was fine to give it to her and to consider it a gift from both of us. (Riiight... I did all the work!)

I've learned my lesson though. Machine washable yarn only from now on if I knit for others.

Another machine washing disaster:
I had knitted the Puff Sleeve Cardigan by Stefanie Japel a couple years back. I used Knit Picks Bare Merino Wool DK, dyed it before knitting and overdyed it after knitting.

http://images4-cache.ravelry.com/uploads/PointyTeeth/14802813/Picture_8_medium.png

I wore it a few times and then one day my sister did the laundry and she put it in with the wash! It still fit me but it looked like I would burst! I think it might have felted a little when I overdyed it too. I told her at that time that she owes me yarn for ruining that cardigan. I asked my cousin if she could pass it on to a niece. I hope she got to use it.

globaltraveler
11-23-2009, 10:30 PM
it took me 2 years off and on to finish that sweater. I wore it maybe 3 times.

Oh, OUCH.