This week I’ve been working on dyeing spinning fiber. First up has been superfine alpaca top. I wanted to show you part of the process. Especially with alpaca fiber, the dry dyed product is a lot lighter than the wet product. You can see the difference!
I put a bunch of new hand dyed alpaca top into the webstore. You can find them here.
Then Zephyrette is the yarn for you. It is a blend of baby alpaca, cashmere and silk. It is super soft but holds its shape. It has a wonderful hand and makes a fabric with great drape. I’ve just updated the shop with many, many more colorways that have been available in person but not online. You’re in luck today.
This is a really fun and easy knit shawl. It is a flat triangle shawl that can be worn in a variety of ways. It is primarily a garter stitch shawl with intermittent short rows of eyelet (k2tog, yo). The yarn is a 3 ply farm yarn that is a sport weight. There are 2 plies of wool and one of alpaca. So you have a slightly heathery look to the yarn. The yarn will keep its shape because of the wool but add some lovely softness from the alpaca.
Each kit is one of a kind and they are on sale to!!! So be sure to grab one here while they are still in stock.
I’ve known about the California Fibershed movement for quite some time. I long to have a movement like that here in the Mid Atlantic. Have you heard of it before? It started as a local indigo project and grew to a movement to source one’s clothes responsibly and preferably with 100 miles of your home. This can be really hard to do.
The first part of this book details how Fibershed got started and also the really alarming cost of our clothes to our health and the health of the environment. The fashion industry has brought us fast fashion. Clothes that are popular right now for a very short period of time. The 2 biggest manufacturers of fast fashion produce one billion items per year. Most of which are worn a few times and thrown away. Most of these clothes end up in our landfills, becoming more than 5% of all of the municipal waste each year. Over 80 billion garments were sold in 2017 which equals a $1.3 trillion industry employing 300 million people from nearly every country. The majority of those jobs pay a very low wage.
I didn’t realize just how damaging washing your clothes could be. Of course the detergents an be unhealthy for many people. And these synthetic clothes shed microfibers in each and every washing. These microfibers make their way into our water, where up to 40% end up in rivers, lakes and oceans. We know what these plastics are doing in our environment.
What can you do? Well, you buy clothes that will last for a long time, those made from natural fibers and not made from petroleum by-products. You can recycle your clothes by mending them or repurposing them into quilts or other textile items in your home. You can wash your clothes when they are soiled but probably not every time your wear them. And as knitters, crocheters, sewers and makers, you can be part of the fibershed movement. Consider making a wardrobe for yourself or others. Of course wool, alpaca, mohair and cashmere grown locally is sustainable and renewable. We fiber farmers are happy to help you build a wonderful, colorful wardrobe.
I encourage you to read this book and consider the impact of choices we all make in clothing ourselves and our families.
This cowl is knit in the round using the Linen Stitch. Using this stitch has been on my wish list for years. Why? Because I started out as a weaver and this stitch not only appears to be woven but it is also knit as an “over/under” pattern. By knitting in the round, you never have to purl. It is merely a knit stitch and a slipped stitch, over and over again. Because an odd number of stitches is cast on, you can continue to go round and round. I really got into a rhythm and it became a meditative kind of process. Kit includes yarn and pattern, just add needles and get ready to have fun relaxing.
I have some beautiful color combos to make this fun shawl. It is a crescent shaped shawl with short rows of eyelet in a contrasting color. The main color is all garter stitch and it easy vacation knitting. It makes a nice light shawl for summer nights. The kits include 4 skeins of Cirrus yarn and the pattern. Just add needles and you are ready to get knitting. Grab one or two kits in my online store. It’s currently on sale for $45 per kit.
I love this combo of Zephyrette skeins. Our Zephyrette is a blend of baby alpaca, silk and cashmere and is heavenly to knit with. This Strisce pattern is really car or TV knitting. It is mostly a garter stitch shawl with some lace at the bottom edge. It is an asymmetrical triangle shawl and can be worn is a variety of ways. This kit comes with the pattern and 4 skeins of yarn, all you need to do is add needles. You can get the kit here.
Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again,
this time more intelligently.
It was brought to my attention that one of our patterns had a couple of flaws in it. Thanks Anja! That pattern has been out in the world for a couple of years. I wonder why I’m only hearing about it now. I hope people have it in the knitting queue, rather than in their trash heap. I’m so glad that I was able to find out about the error and fix it.
I left out a stitch in 2 rows. An incorrect number of stitches is a fatal error. The cowl would get smaller and smaller. Not a great design for a cowl, right? Now it has been fixed. And it is ready to be released out into the world.
Click here for revised pattern for Rivulet Cowl. Yes, even if you don’t already own that pattern, you can click too and get a fun cowl pattern to knit. Think of it as a great Valentine’s gift!
Click here to buy Zephyrette, our exclusive luscious blend of alpaca, silk and cashmere, for this pattern.