Thursday, June 04, 2009

For the love of yarn

"Yarn is creation, consolation and chaos all spun together into one perfect ball."
The Knitter's Book of Yarn - Clara Parkes
I've just finished swatching with the green Felted Tweed in the picture above and I love it. The yarn's been in the stash for a while but it wasn't until I started knitting with it that I realised just how lovely it is. Soft and springy and very light.

I thought I'd read up in one of my favourite books to understand a little more about the blend of fibres: wool, alpaca and viscose. Not a mixture I've knitted with before. I got The Knitter's Book of Yarn for Christmas and it is an absolute mine of information. I dip in and out of it - learn something then normally forget it again as yarn fumes intoxicate me - today's nugget of information (that I think I might actually remember as it surprised me so) is that viscose or rayon is cellulose based, it's normally made from wood pulp. I'd always thought it was a synthetic like nylon. Still it's only since I started knitting that I call yarn - yarn, before if a knitter was knitting it then it was wool even if it was 100% acrylic wool. Ah so much to learn.

Still CP is a great teacher - this article that has just come out in the summer issue of Twist Collective, on different types of sock yarn and how they can impact on the pattern you're knitting, was really interesting to me and I agree with every word on Clara's Kureyon sock yarn review here. The purchase of two balls of Kureyon sock was defnitely an example of the yarns fumes overpowering me. I bought the yarn despite having previously read this review and thinking the colours wouldn't be enough to make up for the downsides for me. I was sucked in and while I still love the colours that yarn is not much fun to knit.

My new sock project employs a yarn much more palatable or whatever the finger equivalent of that is. A wool and bamboo blend - firm with a slight sheen and a slightly dry feel - very pleasant to knit with - thanks again to Anni who I won this from last summer.

7 comments:

marycatharine said...

I love that book (and Clara Parkes) so much. Your right, every time you open it you learn something new and helpful. Can't wait to see what you're swatching for.

Marianne said...

I have and love that book also, SO much information!
I didn't have time to stop and read that article, just flipping through Twist yesterday, but it did catch my eye and now I'll go read it :^)
xox

Clara Parkes said...

Thank you so much, Sarah! Hearing you talk about yarn in such a passionate, informed way is music to my ears. Happy knitting!

Linda said...

That book sounds fascinating and a really good thing to have as a knitter. I really haven't thought much about the fibres I knit with.

Charity said...

This book looks better and better all the time! I may have to find myself a copy... :o)

Bells said...

i've never really thought about getting that book but I reckon I might do so now. There is so much to know and understand! I'm days away from starting a felted tweed project too and can't wait. I love squishing it!

Anna said...

Thanks for the review - I'd not heard of this book before, but it sounds really interesting and informative.

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