First came Shelter, launched in 2010—and then Loft the following year. Quarry completed the trilogy.
All three of the core Brooklyn Tweed yarns shared a very specific parentage. They were made from the coats of Targhee-Columbia sheep from Wyoming, whose fibers were scoured in the United
A few years ago at Interweave Knitting Lab in Manchester, New Hampshire, I ventured into the North Light Fibers booth. I met Sven, who, with his wife, operates a mini-mill that produces their own line of branded yarns in Rhode Island.
We got to talking, and
Hand-dyers are painters who use yarn as their canvas. Some work their magic on commonly available base yarns, while others seek out the truly rare or unusual. Many more try to find a yarn that falls somewhere in between those extremes, a yarn that is
Imagine if all the wine in the world—red and white alike—were mixed together and sold as generic "wine." Think of how many centuries of craftsmanship and flavor would be lost, and how mediocre it would taste compared with how it would taste if the grapes
To evolve from handspinner to yarn manufacturer is like switching from an upright piano to a pipe organ. Everything is bigger, more powerful and exhilarating. The potential for mistakes is huge, but so is the depth of satisfaction when you get it right.
After two years
For generations, farmers in Texas have raised some extraordinary wool and mohair. We don't hear much about it because the fibers tend to be sold en masse to the textiles industry.
In recent years, however, the ending of government subsidies, severe drought conditions, and low-cost international
With online shopping more prevalent than ever, yarn stores are in a bit of a pickle. They need inventory that covers all the bases—yarns for sweaters, baby garb, socks, lace, etc. But they also need to be able to offer something totally unique, something a
For several years, knitwear designer Anne Hanson has been sourcing and shipping yarns for her Knitspot club. They tended to come from prominent hand-dyers, in exquisite colors, accompanied by original designs by Anne.
Then she decided to go deeper into fiber itself, launching her Bare Naked
Even mill owners like to experiment now and then. Colorflow is the playtime project of Anne Bosch, the owner of Blackberry Ridge Woolen Mill. She wanted to create a yarn with extremely long, slow color transitions—far longer than what you can get if you hand-dyed
Kristine Vejar wants to revitalize the California wool industry, and this yarn represents her first step. Vejar is the creative force behind the Oakland yarn shop A Verb for Keeping Warm.
Besides having discriminating taste in other people's yarns, which manifests itself in an astonishingly well-curated store,
A few years ago, Jill Draper escaped New York City to pursue a quieter, more fiber-filled life. She chose the Hudson Valley partly because of its proximity to Rhinebeck, a charming town she'd discovered through years of attending the New York Sheep and Wool Festival.
Let's cut to the chase: Loft is pretty much perfect. If I had all 32 colors at my disposal, I could easily see myself knitting with nothing but this yarn for the rest of my life.
Well, that might be an exaggeration—but only slight. After all,
Classic Elite Yarns has introduced a new undyed, natural-colors-only yarn collection called Mountaintop. The collection features three yarns to start, each of which is spun in Peru of fibers that have not been dyed or rendered machine-washable.
[caption id="attachment_7407" align="aligncenter" width="400"] Crestone[/caption]
First is Crestone, a hearty and
The global cashmere market has had its share of booms and busts. Some of the most significant changes came within the past two decades as our thirst for inexpensive cashmere led to overgrazing and, ultimately, the desertification of Mongolia.
While the bulk of the world's cashmere
Back in 2000 when I began Knitter's Review, I assumed it'd be easy to find out where the fibers in my yarn came from—and, in the case of wool, which sheep breed had been used. Slowly the reality sank in.
Fibers tend to be sourced from
If you ever decide to drive up the Maine coast to Bar Harbor (and I think you should), your journey will take you past the coastal town of Belfast.
Stay on Route 1 and you'll see only the commercial outskirts of what is, at the center,
How much attention do you pay to the needles you use? Are you fussy, or will you knit with pretty much anything? Have you even paid that much attention to your needles lately?
For fussy and oblivious knitters alike, a few minutes with these needles will
Letting a designer create his or her own yarn from scratch is like giving a child the keys to a candy store. It's easy to lose focus and get overwhelmed by all the choices. It takes maturity and willpower to go slowly, be patient, and
Pam Allen has worn many hats in the knitting world. She was a knitwear designer, she wrote Knitting for Dummies, she edited Interweave Knits magazine, and she was the creative director for Classic Elite Yarns. Then, in January of this year, she appeared to have vanished from the knitting
Just 60 miles north of New York is a 100-acre farm populated with some extraordinary sheep. These animals are all direct descendants of five prize-winning Saxon Merino studs that Eugene Wyatt flew to the U.S. from Australia in 1990, just four years after Australia lifted
In October 2014, Sweet Grass Wool was purchased by Kristine Vejar of A Verb for Keeping Warm. This review has been kept up here because it was one of my favorite breed-specific wools ever, and because Patti deserves to be remembered. Patti's legacy is in
Knitting needles are simple tools. They're basically a long shaft with a point at one end. And double-pointed needles (DPNs) have, as the name suggests, a point at each end. The circumference of the needle shaft determines the size of each stitch. The shape of
Dream in Color is run by friends Veronica and Nancy. The magic begins when the yarns are hand-dyed using a process Veronica calls "veil dyeing." As with most hand-dyers, Veronica guards her dye secrets very closely. But the end result is a semisolid yarn whose extreme
I've used Denise Interchangeable knitting needles for years now, first using the standard set and more recently the pink Interchangeables.
They're infinitely portable, flexible, and practical for almost every knitting use. If I'd had to come up with one complaint, it would've been the shiny plastic box in which
As knitting began its meteoric rise in popularity earlier in this decade, new yarn stores and yarn companies emerged almost overnight. There was just one problem: not enough needles to go around.
For a while, only a handful of companies manufactured almost all the needles on
Until now, Green Mountain Spinnery yarns were primarily in the DK- to worsted-weight range, with yarns like Mountain Mohair and Weekend Wool. These yarns are great for most projects, but if you want to knit socks or lace? Alas, you'd have to look elsewhere.
But the Vermont-based community spinnery
I first set eyes on this yarn during a visit to La Lana Wools, the famous fiber shop in Taos, New Mexico, now gone. La Lana has the visual overwhelm of a Mexican market, only instead of heaping vats of colorful spices and grains you have mounds
For the last 10+ years, Barbara Parry and her husband have been establishing a flock of Cormo and Border Leicester sheep at their 220-acre farm in western Massachusetts.
More recently, she began documenting her daily life on the farm in her blog, Sheepgal—it's one of my daily
Put on a sweater made from Sylvan Spirit and you'll immediately become a tree hugger—not because you love trees, but because you're wearing one.
First introduced in the summer of 2002, this yarn is composed of 50% wool and 50% Tencel lyocell, which is a manufactured fiber derived
For more than 140 years, sheep have grazed along the Columbia Plateau in north central Oregon. Many of them were brought there by rancher Richard Rolland Hinton, a homesteader and respected sheepman whose early crossbreeding efforts helped develop what eventually became the Columbia sheep breed.
Occupying 3,000 acres along Montana's Rocky Mountain Front, Beaverslide Dry Goods is a family ranch whose Rambouillet/Merino sheep produce the yarns you see here.
When the sheep are shorn, their fibers are sent to a small woolen mill in Alberta, Canada, for processing. The mill practices
Restaurants sometimes offer a house wine that's of decent quality, reasonably priced, and available by the glass. Some yarn shops offer the knitterly equivalent, their own "house" yarn. And just like house wines, some are more memorable than others.
Halcyon Yarn is one of the most