Before I decided on the types of yarn I wanted to use in the dyeing process I researched the different compositions, sources, ethics and dyeability.  I have found a company that pride themselves on purchasing fibres with the best farming practices and environment credentials and this has given me confidence that I, in turn, can supply a high quality and sustainable product.  They also ensure that none of the merino is sourced from mulesing.

Superwash Merino

This is a treated yarn sourced from South America from various sizes of farms.  The superwash treatment prevents felting and shrinkage when washed, by coating the yarn with a polymer.  This results in a lovely handle to the yarn.  The Superwash treatment has, in the past, been given a bad rap due to the effluent that has been released from the process.  The standards and laws in the countries where the bare fibre is sourced from has drastically improved, is highly regulated and now the by-products of the process have minimal impact on the environment.

I will always recommend hand washing any product made with my yarns.

Blue Faced Leicester

This yarn is sourced from small farms in the UK and superwashed in the UK to the required environmental standards.

Alpaca

Sourced from Peru from small farmers who work closely to spin a high quality product.

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I will always recommend a cool hand wash and dry flat.  Even if it is a superwashed yarn I would be disappointed if you have spent hours on a project and it shrink in the machine.

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I have listed the recommended needle or hook size below, but please check tension before embarking on a project to ensure that it fits.  (Not so important for a scarf but annoying if your hat doesn’t fit).  The hook or needle size depends on the finish required for your creation.

Yarn Weight Knitting Needle Size Crochet Hook
Lace 1.25mm – 3mm 0.75mm-3mm
4 ply 2mm – 4mm 2.5mm – 4mm
Double 3.5mm – 4.5mm 3.5mm – 4.5mm
Chunky 5.5mm -9mm 5mm – 9mm

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Nep are small “blobs” of fibre which are intentionally woven or spun into the yarn to provide more texture.

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Some of the yarns contain Bronze or Silver Stellina which give them a lovely sparkle.  Stellina is a group of metallic fibres which have been treated so that they are less irritating and softer against the skin.  These yarns are not recommended for socks, but at the end of the day if you want sparkly toes, then please go ahead.

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Item Lace 4 Ply / Sock / Fingering Double Knitting Chunky
Child Hat   150 – 275m 80 – 175m 50m
Adult Hat   300 – 400m  >230m 100m
Socks   185 – 420m 250 -300m 150m (slippers)
Scarf >800m 400m 225 – 420m >300m
Shawl >850m 400m + 220 – 600m >350m
Adult
Sweater
1000 – 2500m 1050 – 2300m 920 – 2100m 700 – 1500m
Child
Sweater
  250 – 900m 320 – 900m 250 – 550m
         

Approximate metres per Skein

Item Lace 4 Ply / Sock / Fingering Double Knitting Chunky
20g   85m    
50g   200m    
100g 800 – 1200m 400 – 425m 200 – 250m 100m
150g   600m    

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