I haven't worked with many variegated or nubbly textured yarns before, so after knitting up a swatch in my Shire Silk, I was quite disappointed to see that the Bead Stitch pattern, from which the more complicated Four Sisters pattern is derived, was quite lost amidst the nubbles. I suppose a larger needle might have helped, but the stockinette portion seemed about right; I didn't want it any looser--nor did I think it was worth swatching the Four Sisters, given what I had already seen. The Bead Stitch is at the bottom of the swatch, while at the top is a simple rib; I was wondering whether any stitch pattern would show up in this stuff.
Then I thought that perhaps a big cable would be nice, so I tried that, with so-so results. This "Framed Cable" pattern is really great, too, pictured on the far left in the book; I'll have to use it for something else. So what to do with this Shire Silk, in what is a nicer color than it appears in the picture (mainly a light silvery green which reminds me of the foliage of a Russian olive tree)?? If it is destined to be a slouchy pullover in mostly stockinette, then I will definitely have to get one of those knitting machines.
So I shelved the Shire Silk for now, and moved on to my second choice: Debbie Bliss Pure Silk. Wow, this is slippery; so slippery that when I pulled it off my ballwinder, it promptly collapsed. I tried to rewind it, and here is the resulting mess. Not only is it slippery, but it twists around itself if given the chance. I finally had to cut it in a couple of places, which for someone like me, who abhors working in ends, is highly annoying.
Stay tuned: will the Pure Silk redeem itself once knit? I wonder....