My neck has been breaking out lately, which has been very annoying. It occurred to me a couple of days ago that it might be a wool allergy, since I've been wearing my wool cape due to rain and I'm almost always wearing my big wool sweater at work for warmth. So yesterday I avoided animal fibers entirely and my neck does seem to be a bit better. Not much data, but we'll see if that continues in the following few days. This is not a knitter-friendly sensitivity to have; good thing I don't knit scarves much, I guess. If that does turn out to be the cause, rather than the oodles of meds I seem to be on for one reason or another, I'll have to either start wearing (cotton) turtlenecks in conjunction with wool or skip it entirely, which would suck. Possibly I could put some lining in the neck of my wool cape so it's not contacting my skin so much. Another question will be if it's all animal fiber or just wool; my scarves (knitted by Mom, who has more patience with several feet of the same thing than I do) are mainly mohair, as is much of my yarn stash. But argh. Winter is not a good time for this to happen.
I've also had some mild frustration regarding this vest I'm working on, based on a quilt block I designed but have never actually sewn. It involves lots of pieces sewn together, naturally. I have three sets of color, each of which is a wool (of course) and a mohair held together with another thin yarn to opacify it a bit. The wools are all Manos del Uruguay, which are hand-dyed and spun by a variety of people and so there's no dyelots; two skeins of the same colors could be quite different. Mostly this doesn't bother me. But for this project I started by using what was left of a hat (of course) I had made most of and then stopped before grafting together into a circle, because I wanted to take pictures. So of course I ran out of that wool in my vest project early. So I bought another skein of Manos in that colorway and made a few more pieces. And then I looked at them together and realized that the new Manos was way brigher than the old, so that the pieces I'd already made (and sewn in) looked faded. I may have gotten an unusually pale skein of it, since when I bought the replacement I don't remember any being particularly lighter than the one I got... and of course I wasn't bright enough to compare them before winding up the new one, when I might have had a hope of exchanging it.
So, of course, the options were to remove all of the older pieces (some of which were sewn to 4-6 other pieces), deal with looking like part of the finished project had been in the sun too long, or unravel the not quite hat. I chose option C, and now have two balls/cylinders of Manos in putatively the same colorway sitting next to me. The difference is really apparent; the old one looks predominantly pale green, light brown, and rose, while the new has those (with a brighter pink) and warm golden yellow and blue and purple. I know those colors are in the old one too, but one hardly sees them in ball form next to the much brighter one.
On the plus side, the new stuff goes better with the Debbie Bliss butterscotch-colored alpaca silk I got to go with the old one (and thought was too bright), so I may just do the hat again in the new stuff. And make it smaller this time, too.
As for the pieces I made with the new stuff, I don't really want to unravel them; the mohair has its usual velcro effect. So I'll sew them together and use them as tests for washing/blocking. Yes, I know I'm supposed to do that before I start the main project, but seeing as I hardly ever finish anything it hasn't mattered as nothing's needed to be washed.
I was going to take a photo of the three yarns, the knitted pieces, and an incidental piece of fruit (Still Life With Apple), but the camera's battery is drained, depleted, dead as a doornail. With approximately twelve zillion cords around here that all look the same the chances of my locating the one I need is low, since even if I were looking straight at it it would just blend in with the rest. And I don't know where to look anyway. I'll leave the yarns and such set up anyway in case my husband sees this entry and can coax the camera into taking the photo. (It's set up from my usual spot on the couch.)