Well, I am exceptionally pleased with the swatching! I did a swatch for felted intarsia, using the Rainbow of Wooly Flavors.
These are the yarns, rolled into balls for better perspective.
I cast on 21 stitches (I think) on #10.5 needles, and made a swatch 6.5″ square, with three figures: a Golden Yellow rectangle 4″ tall and 1.5″ wide (22 rows, 5 stitches), a Scarlet circle 5 stitches by 6 rows, and an Emerald triangle 5 stitches by 6 rows. The background is Olive. The “Before” guage, is 3.33 stitches to the inch, 5.5 rows to the inch.
This is the front side. I had some tension problems; it’s the first time I’ve ever done intarsia, so I’m not gonna beat myself up about that.
This is the back, so that some of y’all who have done intarsia, can check my work… the places where the shapes sloped inward, were hard! And I hate weaving the ends.
This is after about 8-10 minutes of agitation. I was pleased to see that many of the tension irregularities have smoothed out; I think that blocking would have been effective if I weren’t felting this. Stitch definition is still strong. Notice the shrinkage – it’s lost less than an inch of height at this point.
Another 8 or ten minutes of agitation. Felting is much more noticeable, stitch definition is fading away. Height lost, about an inch and a half.
Another 8 minutes or so of agitation, and I’m calling it done. Stitches are pretty much indistinguishable, the fabric is thick and solid, and it seems pretty “done.” Total height lost: 1 3/4 inches. Total width lost: 3/4 inches.
I love how the twisted joins show up on the back all around, giving the shapes a dotted outline. Could be used for effect if done on the good side. It’s better on the straight lines.
Closeup of the front after felting. The “After” gauge is 3.6 stitches to the inch, and 8 rows to the inch. The round shape seems to show the most distortion, although all three shapes were obviously distorted in proportion to the directional shrinkage.
Now, I just gotta go whip up some 8×3.6 graph paper, do some serious graphing, and figure out what I’m gonna make!!