Kiwiyarns Knits

Possum yarn

This page is devoted to information about possum fur yarn and the New Zealand yarn brands that produce possum knitting yarn.

If you are a New Zealander, or have visited New Zealand, you will already know that possums are a major ecological disaster for native New Zealand flora and fauna. Introduced into New Zealand from Australia in the late 1800’s, the brush-tailed possum soon became a pest of major proportions due to the fact that this animal has no natural predators in New Zealand.  More facts about possums are set out here and here.  A few more posts about possum:

Possums beware!

Possum bites

Pesky possum problem

Zealandia day

I have written, or am in the process of writing, a number of reviews covering possum fur yarns from The Wool Company, Zealana, Touch Yarns, Supreme Possum Merino, Mohair Craft and Naturally.

The reviews I have written are set out below:

Possum tales:  A beginning

Possum tales:  The Tui flies

Possum tales:  Kiwi and the trees

Possum tales:  A sense of Touch

Possum tales:  A Supreme fur

Light as air?

My free patterns using possum fur yarn are:

Pretty cabled fingerless gloves

The cafe hat

Evelyn – a simple eyelet lace cowl

Steampunk mittens

I’ll be adding more information here as times goes on.

15 thoughts on “Possum yarn

  1. Thank you very much, you taught me a lot about possums ! Possum wool is not my favourite indeed. I find it’s not as smooth as lamb/alpaca/merino and other threads. However maybe I’ve just not been lucky with the yarn I bought.

    • You’re welcome! You are right in that some possum yarns are not as soft as they ought to be. I find the yarns I have highlighted in my blog are consistently soft and good quality though. The yarn also does soften and bloom once washed.

  2. By the way I’m actually looking for kiwi wool manufacturers (my preference goes to crafted/and dyed threads) to sell through my website and export (that’s how I found your blog), so if you ever know somebody or a small producer who would be interested in selling to me, please let me know :-) Thanks !!

  3. I absolutely love your review of possum yarns. I am in the U.S. and my boyfriend has requested I crochet him something using possum yarn (his brother lives in NZ and sent their sister a scarf) and I had been struggling to find different kinds available online until I found this website. I had previously been considering Supreme 8 and 12ply for making a hat and sweater due to the significantly lower cost and thickness (worsted/aran weight), but your reviews suggests that The Wool Co. makes the best yarn. Would you mind giving me some advice about this?

    Thanks!!

    • Just realized the Wool Co. yarn is double the weight per ball, so ignore the comment about lower cost… but would still love advice about which is the best!

      • I’m glad you found my reviews helpful. In answer to your question, I’ll make a few observations:

        1. Supreme and The Wool Co. possum are the same quality. They’re both lovely. They do feel different – Supreme is a lot softer and loftier as it has a higher possum content. The Wool Co. is also soft, just not quite so cuddly, I should say. There’s a bit more ‘substance’ (wool) in the yarn. If you’re looking to do something with cables or stitch definition, I’d say the Wool Co. as you’ll get a nicer result, but if it’s all ribbing or stocking stitch, then either is fine.

        2. The Wool Co. easily knits to 20 sts using 4.5mm needles. I’ve been able to translate it into some light worsted patterns with no difficulty.

        3. Each company does different colours – you may find you end up choosing based on which colour you prefer! (As long as the weight checks out I suppose. ;-))

        Hope that helps.

  4. Good morning,
    You may just be the person to answer my question. A few years back (maybe 10) I got some yarn that I believe was 100% possum fur. It was rather rough as I worked with it, but once it was washed….it is divine! Today, as I look for possum yarn, it is all blended. Is 100% possum available? Was it ever? I want to duplicate the feel of the hats that I made years ago.
    Thanks, I look forward to hearing from you, Ann

    • Hi Ann

      The commercial spinners I have spoken to say that the highest concentration of possum you can get is 40% before the yarn becomes too weak to work with. Apparently, the fibres are too short to spin into a yarn strong enough. I think I know the yarn you refer to because I got some too – it didn’t seem at all like the possum garments I bought. I was told that once I washed it, it would fluff up nicely, and it did. That yarn was 30% possum I think. Was your yarn commercially spun or handspin? Someone might have tried hand spinning 100% possum. I suspect that if you knew what you were doing, you probably can handspin it as 100% possum as it can’t be that different to angora (not that I’ve tried). At $150 per kg, I suspect there’s a commercial decision why it’s not spun 100% too!

      In summary, I confirm you can’t buy commmercial 100% possum yarn. The yarns spun these days are pretty soft and luxurious though… have you tried Supreme’s 8 ply? It’s very, very soft and I think probably the closest to what you are looking for.

  5. Hi,
    What wonderful site. I have been trying to find 100% possum yarn, the information you have provided is excellent. I have knitted a cardigan and scarf using the “Supreme Possum Merino” . I was hoping to find a yarn with a greater possum content. Now I realise why it is so difficult. I was told by a weaver in Nelson that the higher % possum yarn is not available in NZ but is being made in China!! I’m not so sure now of the validity of this.
    Anyway – the garments I knitted with the Supreme yarn are fabulous, very soft and cosy, though I didn’t find them quite the same quality as my commercially bought possum cardigan. I was under the impression my bought garment was 100% possum, it certainly was the warmest (though most light weight) garment I have worn. – Unfortunately I have lost this cardigan!

  6. I recently bought a skein of zealana Rimu. It was a bit pricey (I live in California), so I bought only one as I had never knit with knit. I am thinking about knitting it into a hat. It feels lovely.

    • Yay!! Wait ’til you give it a quick wash after you’ve knitted it – it will bloom beautifully and be even softer! A hat sounds like a great choice.

      • I don’t think I have enough, so I’m thinking of a wide brim knit in garter stitch sideways, and then picking up and knitting the crown in black alpaca. Do you recommend a loose gauge to allow the blooming?

  7. Pingback: Kid Ewe Knot » New Yarn!

  8. Pingback: Possum Yarn? Possum Yarn! | | ...Stefanie Japel Knits...…Stefanie Japel Knits…

  9. Pingback: A Good Yarn | PNW girl goes to NZ

I'd love to hear from you. Let me know your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s