Saturday, August 20, 2011

Yarn Options

I am working in an extremely sparsely populated computer lab right now (as in the only people who are in here are employees), so I'm going to talk about yarn! I love yarn! Hopefully you do too!

Ok, so KristenMakes has a really useful post up about choosing yarns for the Cadence knitalong. I've been browsing different yarns in my free time the past week and I've decided to use wool/wool blend so I can wear it in cooler weather. While it would be really nice to use the yarn listed on the pattern, Elsebeth Lavold Silky Flamme (which sounds like it'd feel amazing), it is way out of my budget. According to the pattern, I'd need 820 yds of whatever I'm using (IF the yarn I use is the same gauge, which it might not be) and I can't do the $100+ thing right now. But I have narrowed it down to four different possible yarns that ARE in my budget range:

Lion Brand Fisherman's Wool

Fisherman's Wool is 100% wool. I have used many different yarns that Lion Brand offers and I really like their products. The yarn only comes in a limited natural range of colors, though. However, that's not necessarily a bad thing! I like wearing neutrals and earth tones because they go with almost everything. And since I would want to add this sweater to my professional wardrobe, being able to go with just about everything else I wear is definitely a plus. For colors, right now I'm leaning towards Oatmeal, Brown Heather, Oak Tweed, and Birch Tweed. Most of those I'd be able to wear with black or brown.

Bamboo Ewe

Bamboo Ewe is a bamboo/wool blend. If you've never touched bamboo yarn before, you are missing out. It feels very soft and silky and tends to give a bit of a nice sheen to the yarns. I am not sure how warm this would be in the winter, but I think I would have less of a problem with itch, though. I am a little wary about wearing 100% wool sometimes, because of dry skin, but that's something I could take care of when making the sweater so that there's enough ease in it to wear something under it. When it comes to colors, it still only has a limited range of colors, but instead of just being neutrals it's mostly brights. I like bright colors, but I don't wear them a whole lot. The only one I'm really a fan of is Eucalyptus, but Mercury looks like a nice silver grey.

Patons Classic Wool

I have used Patons Classic Wool for other projects (a scarf and felted purse) and am pretty happy with it. It's got a nice feel to it and knits easily. Unlike the other two yarns, Paton's Classic Wool comes in a large variety of colors, both brights and neutrals. It also has a few multi-color options as well. Looking at the projects others have posted on Ravelry, there are a few people who used multi-colored yarns that look really nice. The more subtle the variation the better, I think. As for colors, the only multi-color I'm leaning towards is Bonsai (love blues, greens, and browns together), but Eucalyptus, Natural Marl, Peacock, Moss Heather, and Jade Heather are definite contenders.

Knit Picks Wool of the Andes

I have only heard good things about Knit Picks from my knitter friends, so this is the main online only option for me. (The other three I can buy from shops around town.) The site says that the wool is, "a cross between Corriedale (for the sturdiness) and Merino (for the softness), producing a strong fiber with an excellent softness quotient for a wide variety of uses," which sounds really nice. Strong and soft is good. I love soft sweaters. I'm all about soft, snuggly sweaters, especially in winter. (Winter is that time where all I want to do is live in pajamas, fuzzy slippers, and snuggly blankets and drink lots of cocoa and tea. Fires are also nice. But when I have to go outside, it's nice to take the snuggly with me!) And like the Patons, there is a really nice color palette to chose from. I think my two favorites are Forest Heather and Claret Heather, but Tidepool Heather, Winter Night, Saphire Heather, Bittersweet Heather, Amethyst Heather, and Lullaby are very nice, too. (Can you tell I like heathers?) Lots to think about.

But as I said in my last post, I have a trip to JoAnn's planned for today for other supplies, so if I find one of the first three yarns in a color I absolutely love, I'll go ahead and get them. Otherwise I've got an order from Knit Picks to make soon! September can't get here soon enough. Sitting on this yarn is going to make me anxious to start.

Edit: JoAnn's had all of the first three yarns. The fisherman's wool, while I think would be great for felting, was WAY to itchy for a sweater like this. Just touching the ball was irritating my skin. The Bamboo Ewe felt as lovely as I thought it would, but they didn't have enough in stock for the whole sweater and I am one of those people who hates buying yarn in multiple batches. (Unless it's a synthetic, since those dyes don't seem to change often at all. And I don't want to buy any more synthetics if it's something that's for me.) The Patons had plenty in stock, though, and I actually do like the feel of the Classic Wool, so I went ahead and bought 5 balls of the Jade Heather, which is a little more than I need in case I want to elongate parts. I'm definitely going to buy the Knit Picks for my next project, though. I already know what I want to make with it.


  1. Ooh, lovely yarn choices! I love the bamboo/wool and the Knit Picks options. :)

  2. The bamboo/wool blend felt very nice! Sadly they didn't have enough in any colors I wanted. :( I ended up getting the Patons. I'm definitely going to order some of the Knit Picks for my next project though.