Hello! Happy Weekend!
Well, it has been an interesting few weeks on the knitting front, and I thought it is about time we talked about happy knitting news! In short order, the highlights have been as follows:
- I started my contract (hooray! Not knitting, but I thought I’d mention it. I’m really enjoying being there too).
- I finally found a heel for Mary Mary that I like and importantly, that other knitters will like (currently feverishly knitting the 3rd sample of Mary Mary that includes the new heel).
- Very excitingly, I received some Yarn!
- Feedspot nominated Kiwiyarns Knits among the Top 100 Knitting Blogs for Knitters and Crocheters! I was a bit leery when I received the news, thinking it was spam, but having checked it out, and seeing what good company I keep, I’m really happy about this nomination! This is very much thanks to all of you who read my blog. Thank you very much for reading!
- Designing is finally happening again, to great happiness.
So let’s get into details. First up, The Yarn!
This is a glorious bundle of squish – New Zealand made yarns compliments of Naturally Yarns, sent to me for review. Lucky me!
I haven’t yet had a chance to get into them properly, but I hope to have time to do that in the next couple of weeks. Here’s a very quick look at them for the time being:
Otira (40% NZ Merino/ 35% Tencel/ 25% Possum)
This new yarn was released in February. Having read about the unenvironmentally-friendly manufacturing methods for bamboo and rayon fibre, I was concerned about the environmental friendliness of the Tencel content. However, this article from Ecomall has assured my fears that of any manmade fibre, Tencel is probably the best choice.
Tencel is the brand name for lyocell produced by Lenzing AG. Lyocell is a fibre made from wood. It is important to note that it’s the brand Tencel, manufactured by Lenzing AG that has been given this approval from environmental agencies, and not all lyocell.
Lenzing AG, which owns the Tencel brand, undertakes extremely careful manufacturing methods to prevent harmful chemicals from entering the environment in the manufacture of Tencel. In addition, the wood it sources all comes from sustainable sources. Here’s another interesting article I read from OrganicClothing.blogs.com if you would like to know more about Tencel and production processes surrounding this brand.
Amuri (75% Pure NZ Merino, 25% Possum)
I have not yet knitted with this possum blend yarn. It is the most halo’y of all the possum blends I have come across and has an interesting single ply construction that looks like the wool was softly felted. It will be interesting to see how it performs!
Waikiwi (55% NZ Merino, 20% Nylon, 15% Alpaca, 10% Possum)
Billed as a sock yarn, I haven’t yet knit a sock out of this yarn, so it will be interesting to do some intensive swatching!
Harmony 8 ply (100% New Zealand merino wool)
Again, a very interesting single-ply, felted construction. This yarn is available in 8 ply and 10 ply natural shades (not completely naturally coloured, as the natural wool is colour adjusted with dye to keep it consistent from season to season), in colour, and in tweed. It’s incredibly squishy and I have to admit, is the first of the yarns to be put on the swift to be balled ready for knitting!
Most of the colours shown above are from their range of new colours out this season.
Also, you will soon get a chance to win this beautiful skein on Circus Tonic Handmade Revelry Sock:
Hannah and I have been talking bird colours. I asked if she would be interested in doing an interview on Kiwiyarns Knits, and she very kindly said yes! She is one of the most amazingly generous people I have met – she decided to also include a skein of a custom-dyed sock yarn as part of our interview. This colourway is called Silvereye (also called White-Eye or Wax-Eye) – inspired by the adorable little bird that can be found in both Australia and New Zealand. The image of a Silvereye below is taken from Ordinary Goodness’s delightful blog which features a lot of New Zealand birdlife. I know the Lynley wouldn’t mind if I used her photo. Thanks Lynley!
Watch out for our interview soon. I’ll also be giving away a free copy of my new sock pattern, Mary Mary.
I have also been working with Mary at Maniototo Wool to design a child’s poncho. Here’s a sneaky peek:
I’m really glad that I got a chance to work with Mary on this design. I’ll show it in full detail when the pattern is complete. The DK yarn in particular is delightful to work with and I’m very excited to use more of it in future designs!
As you can see, there is quite a backlog of things to catch up on, so now that life is “somewhat” on a more even keel, there should be some interesting reads to be had in the near future!