I am sure many of you who are textile afficionatoes have run across this yarn. This is the first time I have seen it in the “real”.
It was in a most unlikely location, not a yarn store or yarn expo, but in a General Trade show that focused on vendors selling things like jewellery, jams and jellies. Mary Kay cosmetics, Tupperware, gourmet pkgd sauces, glassworks, chainsaw scuptors and other fine artisans. The vendor was selling scarves that she had recently purchased on a vaction in India.
There they were, a few hanks of yarn; which appear to be the re-cycled Sari hand spun yarn. She had purchased them from a womens co-op. Could I resist?………….. No!
The testing and swatching will begin.
So far, I’ve swatched using a knit weave technique on the Chunky knitting machine, washed and air dried it. I am plesantly surprised. It softens beautifully when compared to the feel on the hank.
I have very recently attended a Machine knitters Seminar in the USA.
I came home very disappointed. I realize that the Host has worked hard to even present a seminar. We are all thankful. Many attendees drove hours to get to the location.
Where are the younger knitters? Where are the new to the knitting machine knitters? I spoke with a few who were returning to the craft. No fashion show by the presenters or the attending knitters to show off their current work and fashion styles.
Very, very few people wearing a knit. Are knitted garments out of style? No one wearing shawls and cowls like they do at a Handkniters event.
It appears to be a craft in decline and a dying skill. Perhaps, I hope that I am wrong and just venting my disappointments.
Here are a few photos that I was allowed to take of samples that one of the demo’rs. She has been using the popular self-striping sock yarns in her work.
The brown one appears fuzzy, it is a smooth yarn and one strand of chenille yarn.
Working with Vintage yarns can be challenging. The yarns deriorate in a number of ways. Synthetics may become very brittle, unpleasant to work with on the hands and the project just doesn’t look or feel right when complete. Of course the dyed colours were popular at the time, but appear so garish to our eyes at this point in time.
Natuaral fibres are more forgiving, of which was mostly wool. The colours are more forgiving to the eye, but were/are subject to fading. Sometimes, this is a problem, other times not. Then, there are the critters. ……….The yarn breaks apart or strands are broken from an infestation of moths.
It has been recommended that whenever a vintage yarn is encountered, a treatment of a few hours in the freezer will kill any live bugs. Better to be safe than sorry, than spread the infestation among non-infected goods.
This yarn appears to have been sold in the 1980s and id’d by the style of labelling. Todays label information is far more complete for the user. Those were the times……no yardage/meterage.
The question to me was what to make with this yarn. I tried felted slippers. Success was not in the cards. They were felted over and over in the top loading washing machine, the dryer was brought into the mix, but they were very difficult to felt and sizing was difficult to attain.
Eventually, I cut them up for insoles for my “crocs” and the scraps wound for the start of a “dryer ” ball. Dogs also like these “dryer” balls.
Two more experimental hats, different shapes, but same yarn. Lette Lopi which turns out having a nice “halo” effect. The shapes are a basic hat that is knitted at a looser stitch gauge. I use 7mm needles. The difficult part is decorating them ! Sometimes, the hat needs more than 2 wash cycles.
This is a first! Yarn bombing in my neighbourhood. It certainly cheers up our recent dull skies and rain, no significant snow this year. This Southern Ontario, Canada. The Snow Geese have rested and and continued on their flight route North. There must have been a gaggle of 80 +. It is also unusual to see these white geese. We have plenty of Canada Geese and Mallards.
I was not able to take a still picture of this.
The video shows how the commercial fuzzy yarn scarves are made using a circular knitting machine.
A special request from a Gent with limited hair (think bald) in a cold climate.
The request had criteria. Warm, fit was to hug the head, Black, small fold up/down brim! Water, wind and snow resistant.
Yarn: Istex Lette Lopi, (aran weight) 50 gm.
Needles: 4.5 circular.
Size : Medium
Method: handknit circular
Cast-on 80 stitches,
Ribbing 2×2, (knit 2, purl 2)
Knit approx 14 rows or 2 ”
Knit stockinette for next 5 ”
Crown shaping: decrease. Approx 3″
Knit 7, k2 together and repeat around this round,
Knit 1 round plain.
Repeat in this way, until a few stitches remain. Thread end of yarn through them and secure.
Soak the completed hat in warm water, squeeze out the water, roll in towel to remove excess water. Then, lay out the hat and smooth out the stitches and leave to air dry.
Enjoy your JACK HAT
Yet Another Canadian Artisan , Mary Anne Cutler 2016
These instructions are for a DIY adapter for mounting a KR7 on a variety of machines. The KR7 is the mechanical knit contour device made by and meant to be used with the Singer/Studio/Silver-Reed knitting machines for garment shaping.
I chose a 1″thick piece of wood, the length of the KR7 and 4 ” wide. I inserted a couple of screws, with the heads protruding , where they would match and fit into the holes on the bottom of the device. Then, place the device (KR7) attaching it onto the adapter board ( sliding it over the screw heads).
Place the unit at the appropriate height for the row tripper to trip the KR7. I used duck tape to attach the board securely onto my knitting table.
My newly designed screw board was approx 1” thick (high) approx 4″ wide and 22 “, the length of the Knit Contour device. A visit to a lumber yarn (Home Depot, Lowes, etc) may turn up a scrap piece of wood the needed size or they may cut one for you.
I have used it with the Superba, the Passap Duo80, the LK150 , the Brother Hobby 350.
Mary Anne Cutler, ON. Canada