I love to learn new things. I love to improve upon old things I previously learned. Currently I am a part-time teacher at the new Michaels Arts and Crafts store. I teach/lead discussions/act as example and support for several different arts and crafts. One thing Michaels requires is that the knitting and crocheting teachers be certified by the Craft Yarn Council as knowledgeable enough to actually bless the students as they try to learn a new skill. This certification process requires a somewhat costly course from the Craft Yarn Council.
Part of the certification requirements include making swatches in some basic stitches and techniques. These small pieces of knitting have VERY specific conditions to be acceptable to the CYC. One of them is an exact size. To reach this size one must adjust needle size, number of stitches, and eventually blocking the pieces.
This is a picture of the preliminary swatches on blocking wires.
One little glitch in the system is that the blocking wires, which have lived in their little cardboard tube all their lives, impacted the swatches by passing on a tiny bit of dark grease-looking grunge. This is not something I expected....