Overfelted? There’s still hope!

A year or so we got a tablet computer. Initially, didn’t know what I needed one for. Now I love it! And it was not long before I thought it could use a cover to help keep it protected as I carted it everywhere with me.

After poking around Ravelry in search of a pattern, I opted for E-Read on the Go by Rose Stewart. I liked that I would be able to use the tablet while it was still in the case and that the pattern was adjustable to ANY size electronic, so I knew it would fit MY electronic. My one objection to the pattern is there is no tips on projecting how much yarn you will need in the end. I thought I would be OK with a single skein, but ended up needing two – making this a fairly expensive tablet cover!

Next up was to find a yarn to do it in. This took a surprisingly long period of time as I did not want a plain, solid color. Eventually, the yarn I ended up with Schoppel-Wolle Gradient, a worsted-weight, feltable version of the popular Zauberball. This was largely because I had tried to use it for a different project and it just did not work for that. It seemed perfect for this project.

While I am OK with the result, I would caution others thinking about using Gradient for projects. One, a single ball does not contain a full color repeat. So if you need more than one ball and want the gradient effect to be continuous, you will spend a fair amount of yarn trying to match up the end of one skein with where to begin in the next skein. Two, one of my two balls had a knot in it. Normally, I’m not one to fuss about knots – particularly in feltable yarns. But when a gradient color is the main point, a knot often means an abrupt shift in color, as it did in this case. I needed two balls to finish my project, but there was a lot of leftover, too – in parts, from my matching up the color changes.

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Best of all – it fit my electonic! I found three cute little buttons that coordinate with the various greens. In these photos, I had attached only one. I noticed when I cut the buttonhole, that it was not fully felted. This is also noticeable in the photos as you can still see the subtle signs of garter stitch.

As time went on, this bothered me. Enough that I decided to try to felt it “a little more”. Right. Do Not Try This At Home! While I had carefully felted the finished cover the same way I did the swatch - by hand in our Wonder Wash. This was how the pattern instructed – felt the finished object the same way you did the swatch. Make sense. But I wanted some more instant gratification, so I tossed the mostly felted item into our wash machine for a quick wash. That should felt it “a little more”, right?

WRONG.

It came out so small, I could barely force my electronic in it, and I certainly could not close it any longer! I tried pinning it out so it would dry as large as possible, but it still would not work. In fact, it looked rather silly. Disappointed and mad at myself, the project sat. I was sure I had ruined it.

Then, my sweetie was reading thru a book on vinegar, Vim & Vinegar by Melodie Moore, while planning on how to make some flavored vinegars. Among the many miscellaneous tips in the book for ways to utilize vinegar, was one titled: Shrunken Sweater Saver. Really? Let’s try it on my ruined tablet cover! I had come to terms that it was ruined, so experimenting with this potentially unhelpful suggestion could not hurt it any more.

The directions said to put one part vinegar and two parts water into a kettle and boil the item for 25 minutes. Simple enough. We set the brew to boiling and submerged the tablet cover. After the treatment, the tablet cover was indeed more relaxed than before. It could be stretched back to the size that fit the tablet again! It was pinned out to dry, reassembled, and check it out:

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If you look closely, you will notice the flap is significantly shorter than the first version, but otherwise, it works just fine. I am so pleased that we were able to save this project! Keep the vinegar trick in mind next time you have something that is overfelted.

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One comment on “Overfelted? There’s still hope!

  1. well you come acroos advice in the most peculiar ways!! i’d like to try making a felted case for my indle and just love yours as green is definately my colourXX well done it looks greatxx

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