Monday, October 26, 2009

Motivation Matters

I think perhaps it was just the specter of having to watch this movie , but regardless, the Heather Hoodie front has been ripped, re-knit and the pieces are blocking.

Why would the possibility of a documentary on Winged Migration be so motivating? After my last post a creative reader decided to give me just what I asked for: a boring documentary. While I do generally enjoy a certain amount of Nature cinematography, I was warned that this particular documentary was not only boring but depressing. Hmm...what to do?

I sat down with the offending piece of knitting and put on a favorite podcast. It really didn't take me long once I was over the mental block of even looking at it. I told myself that if I couldn't knit and listen to Dori and Val, then Winged Migration it would be. Much to my surprise and enjoyment, I was able to do something I enjoy AND fix the problem!

BUT if you find yourself in a similar situation, and find that pure boredom is the only kind of auditory stimulation you can stand while knitting through a troubling piece, please let me know. You too can join the Sisterhood of the Traveling Documentary. Just say the word and I'll pass it on to you.

You can then be perfectly content. Just like these two.


Lynx217 said...

I had bugs get into my yarn. I think I salvaged all my big bundles, but my little ones and the bag they were in ended up in the trash. You know those lil bugs that get into flour... So now I have them in a bag in a box off the floor until I can get this plastic container cleaned out - hopefully they'll all fit in there. Any advice? And am I wrong for not throwing out the nearly-full or never-used bundles of yarn?

Amanda said...

Oh, Lynx217, I feel your pain! I've been there. It's heartbreaking to have critters in your yarn. When it comes to getting rid of them, there are a wide variety of suggestions to be found on the internet. But I can only tell you what worked for me.

The first step is to quarantine your yarn. Go get a box of gallon-sized ziplock bags and put any yarn you even think might be infested in separate bags. (Yes, moth larvae can and will eat through plastic if they need to, but if the bag is full of wool, they will eat the yarn before they will even consider the plastic.) Now, take those bags away from the rest of your stash.

What to do with the bags? As I said before, there are a number of ideas making the rounds. You can freeze them for a couple of weeks, then thaw them for a couple of weeks, then repeat this process a few times. Supposedly the initial freeze kills the adults and larvae. The thaw allows remaining eggs to hatch, and the next freeze kills what has hatched. Doing this repeatedly makes sure you get everything. This method has worked for me, but I've heard of some people for whom it has not worked.

You can "cook" the critters out. Moths, larvae and eggs will supposedly all die when subjected to high enough temperatures. I don't know what that temp is, but I've heard of people having a fair bit of success microwaving their yarn. I haven't tried this because I don't want the texture of my yarn to change. I also don't want to risk melting any small percentage of synthetic fiber that might be in the yarn. Attempt this at your own risk.

Finally, the only way to really and truly get rid of the infestation is to use moth balls. That's the only thing that will kill them--eggs, larvae and adults--with 100% certainty. I have gone with this method a couple of times--when I was afraid a truly precious yarn was infested. If you go this route, please use the utmost caution. The mothballs should go under the yarn and in a closed container because the vapors rise and must be trapped in with the moths. Also, please please do this outside or in a garage. Moth balls are highly toxic (obviously...they kill moths), and they will also harm pets and humans if not handled properly.

I hope this helps.

Amanda said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peggy said...

I just have to say that Winged Migration is one of my alltime favorite movies. I would be motivated by having the time to watch it and knit! LOL!

Elizabeth said...

Ha! I think we'll take whatever form of motivation we can get to finish our stubborn projects. But if you are fond of this dvd it might turn up in our Yankee Yarn Swap at December Knit Night...