I knit swatches to check my gauge. Sometimes I wash swatch, but mostly not because I plan to unravel and reknit in case my project runs short and I need the yardage. I am buying better, more $$ yarns and I want things to fit. I want shawls to drape, and cowls to have a little more body. I cable up a storm then submerge in Soak bath. My heart sinks as the little orderly knit stitch legs splay and relax to a miscalculated dimention. What to do? My new technique is to but my project in a pillowcase and yes, stick it in the dryer on a delicate to low setting. I stand nearish the drier and wait. I check every 5 minutes and watch the fibers tuck back up to their prewashed springy dimention. Although Pashmina and Rios are labled machine washable with suggested air dry I hand wash and them in the dryer. I watch and check frequently to avoid shrinkage and felting. Remove the project from the heat before completely dry and block or not depending on how mishaped it has become. When I knit
Owlie Sleep Sack by Teresa Cole with Malabrigo Rios and hand rinsed it in Soak to release some of the dye and soften it up the sack relaxed to double its size! About 5 minutes in a pillowcase in the dryer popped it back in shape so that therer was dimention again in the cable owls. Twisted Rib Neckwarmer by Michelle Johnston, Blackbun's version and KnittedblissJC's excellent Stockholm pattern both have loads of Ravelry comments about how their beautiful cable cowls have stretched. I am casting on fewer stitches and plan to soften and release dye in a Soak bath and will dry in that pillowcase!