In cogitating about what kind of a sweater to knit from my handspun Coopworth, one thing has been troubling me. I've been picturing a sweater with wide bands of color from darkest at the bottom edge to lightest at the neck. There's a nice flow from the dark brown to the dark taupe to the tan, but then a big abrupt jump to the creamy white. I was worried that the contrast would be too jarring.
I pondered it a while in the back of my mind, thinking maybe I would have to reserve the white to use somehow as an accent, instead of as part of the flow. But then one day in a local yarn shop, I spotted some Coopworth fiber in light gray, a color that I hadn't seen before. It's actually kind of salt-and-peppery, if you look closely. Maybe it's from some silver-haired dame of a ewe, who'd once been a darker color but had gone gracefully gray. Hmmm, thought I, this could come in handy. I'd better grab it.
In fact, it might be just what I need to ease the sudden jump between colors. I wasn't sure, since the others are in the brown family, and this is gray. But when I held them together, it looked as if it just might work.
I spun some up to see how it would look. It felt a little coarser than the other colors, further evidence, perhaps, that this is from an older sheep.
I think I also spun it slightly more loosely. But the texture difference isn't too pronounced. The yarns are enough alike to be sympathetic.
When I hold these five colors together, they make a calmer transition. With the gray added, they seem much more comfortable together. Who would have thought?
I can imagine this now in a sweater of graduated colors. While I'm figuring out exactly what that sweater will look like, Rastro and I will spin some more of the gray, so I'll have equal amounts of each color.
So I think I have my answer. There's nothing like a dame.