My husband had to get up at 4:00 a.m. to go to work today, so I also was up at that hour. I had to move the car and make his coffee, so there was no point in trying to go back to sleep, even though I do not have to work today. I have to go grocery shopping and clean my house and perhaps practice bells and I have a little bit of computer work and a few phone calls and a couple of recipes to try out, but that’s all I have to do.

What’s more, the yarn from Knitpicks arrived yesterday.11

This is going to be a sweater for #2 son.

It is Wool of the Andes in “iron ore.”

#2 son put on his sweater from last year, made in a gray shade of this yarn. He needs the next size up. The pattern is a basic set-in sleeve type using the calculations from The Knitter’s Handy Book of Sweater Patterns, and it worked out perfectly. I think I can just make the next size up from that book and it will be perfect.

The gray one can be handed down to #2 daughter.

The sweater still looks nice, even though it is just about exactly a year old. My Wool-Ease socks are also a year old, and now that I have mended the heels, they are also in good condition. I wore them yesterday. It may be that the mending of the heels means that the Wool-Ease didn’t hold up as well as the Wool of the Andes, but then sweaters don’t have heels.  And the socks have been machine-washed, while the sweater has only been hand-washed. On the other hand, the sweater has been worn by a teen-age boy, which has got to be a rougher life.

No, I think that we need a more even comparison of the two yarns. Here are a couple of bawks.

These give an unusually good opportunity for fair comparison.

The one on the left is Wool of the Andes, and the one on the right is Wool-Ease. They were made at the same time, two years ago, and since they were Christmas gifts, they both went into use on the same day. Both have been used on all the chilly nights since then. Both have come into regular contact with boiling water, continued exposure to heat, and being squashed under quilts. Both are regularly stretched on and off of the hot water bottles.bawk 003 They are, in short, treated worse than most hand-knits, but have been equally mistreated.

Both show significant signs of wear. The cables are no longer crisp and there is definite pilling. They have  obviously fared much worse than the socks or the sweater. I am showing you how the gray one looked when first made, on the right, so you can see the degree of wear.

But the Wool-Ease one has significantly less definition left in its cables. It is more stretched out, and has more general fuzziness than the Wool of the Andes. Wool of the Andes is known for pilling, and there is perhaps slightly more pilling with it than with the Wool-Ease. Neither has developed holes or lost its shape. But I would have to say that the Wool of the Andes is the winner for durability.

Now you know.

#2 son suggests that the hot water bottles need new sweaters. I will be finishing Ivy first, and #2 son’s sweater, and then I will consider it.