Friday, September 02, 2005

vegan yarn stash

these are my good yarns that i'm stoked to work with. my motivation in posting this is not only to ramble on about yarn, but i also hope this gives people an idea about some of the nicer vegan yarns available and helps demonstrate how vegan knitters don't have to feel deprived if they avoid using wool or silk.

this half finished scarf is one i'm making for my dad out of patagonia hand dyed nature cotton from chile. my dad asked for a ribbed scarf in multi-colored yarn. a traditional rib didn't look good (in my opinion) with the nubby texture, so instead i did a "faux rib" by alternating stripes of stockinette and reverse stockinette. so the pattern is: knit 1 row, purl 1 row, knit 1 row, purl 1 row, knit 1 row, repeat.

i love the colors in this yarn, they remind me of the fall foliage in connecticut, where i grew up and my dad still lives. plus, it's sooo soft. i hope he likes it -- if not i'm going to steal it back because i love this scarf.

i also have 3 skeins of patagonia nature cotton in a different color (the green yarn below) that i haven't decided what to do with yet. i was considering making arm warmers out of it. any suggestions?

i got these two blue / grey / gold balls of andalusia lana gatto microfiber on sale from knit + stitch = bliss in bethesda. it has a very funky texture and i really like the combination of these colors together. i think i'm going to try to make a hat for myself out of it.

when i was in san francisco, i found the BEST yarn store -- it's called imagiknit. i wanted to buy half the yarns in the store. i found this beautiful yarn called "stylecraft linen look" on sale for less than $6 per skein (below). i bought all the skeins they had left, which was 3 skeins of the cream, 3 skeins of the plum, and one skein each of the blue, gold, and khaki. it is 65% acrylic, 17.5% linen, and 17.5 viscose, but i think it looks a lot like a linen/wool blend. it's very soft and elegant.

i was thinking of making a sweater with the cream and plum, making the torso out of one color and sleeves and ribbed neck out of the other, but i'm not sure if i have enough yarn for that? anyone have any suggestions? (each skein is 230 yards and the gauge is 4mm/USA 6 needles.)

i figure i can use the blue, gold and khaki to make small projects like ipod covers, or maybe a striped hat with two of the colors.

finally, my next project after my dad's scarf will be a baby hat for my future niece, who is expected in november. i have this beautiful pakucho undyed, organic cotton from peru that i bought especially to make this baby hat.

pakucho yarn is color grown, which means that the colors are the natural colors of the cotton fiber. i bought it in off white, but it also comes in greens, browns, and other color-grown colors. or, if you want to get really creative, you can buy the off white and hand-dye it yourself.

because the yarn is organic and color grown, it's good for the environment. it is also fair trade. i just love the idea that one of the first things "baby girl frey" will own is something that not only is pretty (hopefully!) and keeps her warm, but is also something that was made with care not only for her but also for the earth and for all the people whose labor went into making this beautiful yarn.

p.s. reading siel's and veganknitter's comments reminded me that i should mention that the yarns i have in my stash are just the tip of the iceberg of nice vegan yarns! another one i'm really looking forward to using is soy silk.

i've even heard that there's yarn made out of bananas! other bloggers have much more comprehensive information on vegan yarns, for instance check out fake sheep - that's where i first heard of the banana yarn.


Blogger Siel said...

Where did you get the fair trade yarn? This is a great resource -- Thanks for sharing! FYI -- I made a sweater from bamboo yarn -- Thought you might wanna try it :)

Sat Sep 03, 03:07:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger robyn said...

I love the patagonia nature cotton, I think it will make great arm warmers.

Sat Sep 03, 07:35:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger jen said...

siel, thanks for link, that's a beautiful sweater. i'd seen bamboo yarn in the store before but didn't realize that it would knit up so pretty. and i don't remember seeing it in pink, which is my favorite color! i'm going to have to track it down.

i got the fair trade yarn from a woman who runs her own yarn shop (i believe out of her house) in potomac, maryland. i called her up looking for this particular yarn and she mailed it to me, without even waiting to receive my check! how sweet is that? i'm sorry to say that i can't find where i wrote down her name, but her contact info is:

yarn dog
9 great elm court
potomac, MD 20854

Sat Sep 03, 08:25:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous millcreek said...

I have a feeling that the baby hat is going to be nice. Your niece is going to be so warm and snuggly in it. How about making winter hats or mittens?

Tue Sep 06, 06:52:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Siel said...

Ah -- The kindness of vegan yarn people --

I did a pretty thorough google search, but couldn't find a website. I'll have to try calling her :) She sounds so trusting! I hope no one rips her off.

Anyway -- I and other knitters are eagerly awaiting your next blog. Give us more!

Thu Sep 08, 01:27:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Andrea Rusin said...

Late to the party as usual.... but there's also Ecological Wool, which is color grown as well. I made a beautiful (if I do so say so) fair isle sweater from it -and then left the sweater on a plane somewhere. SO, I'll be trying THAT again. Sigh.

I got the yarn from -from whom I don't get a kick-back, I promise ;)


Fri Sep 16, 06:48:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger michelleknits said...

Hi, I just found your site through the vegan knitting webring.

I love all of the great vegan yarns, though my favorite (like many) is bamboo. I like the soft classic elite/habu kind and the rougher southwest trading company kind. I love the soy silk. Patagonia cotton is really lovely and soft. I want to try that pakucho stuff so badly! Ooh, what else, oh and I love rowan calmer. There's really tons of stuff, so there's no reason to use wool, really.

I'm glad I found your site!

Sat Sep 17, 07:34:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger jen said...

thanks for coming by, everybody.

andrea, that's so awful about leaving your sweater on a plane. after all the work that went into it, i'd be so upset.

michelle, thanks for the tips on the vegan yarns. i agree that there's no reason to wear wool with all the great vegan yarns available. if someone is absolutely going to use wool no matter what, it is better to use more sustainable wool like the ecological wool andrea mentions, but it's so easy to just not use wool at all that i really don't think it is worth the animal suffering it causes.

the rowan calmer looks really pretty. it's going on my yarn wish list, along with the bamboo, soy silk, etc., etc.

Mon Sep 19, 08:06:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous grannyrobin said...

Thanks for posting such interesting information about yarns I otherwise wouldn't learn much about.

I live near Takoma Park, and I'm loving reading about visits to yarn shops that are familiar to me, too.

Thu Oct 06, 12:00:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Brytni said...

I just found your blog today, I don't know if you still even check it since it's been almost a year from all of these other posts, but there are a couple other yarns I thought of that you would be interested in.

There are yarns made from corn cellulose and wood pulp (which isn't good unless it's been sustainably harvested). And as far as wool goes, if you buy from local farms that have their yarn spun, or learn how to spin yourself, you can visit the farms and see the conditions for yourself. That way, you know exactly how happy or unhappy the conditions for the sheep are. There are many heirloom (for lack of a better term off the top of my head) breeds that are solely kept by small farmers who, just by the fact they are keeping these sheep, really care about them and are happy to spread their wool around to get exposure and support for the small breeds.

Sorry for such a long ramble, I don't know if you even keep this blog anymore.

Sun Jul 22, 10:31:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger jen said...

i haven't updated this blog in a long time but i just wanted to respond to the last comment since it looks like people are still finding their way here.

it makes no difference to me where wool comes from, i would not use it. i believe that animals are not ours to use for our amusement or convenience, and, in any event, i see absolutely no need and have absolutely no desire to knit with wool. wool is a non-issue for me.

Mon Jul 23, 05:45:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Net said...

Splitted yarns its new tred in netting yarns in wearing it comes in various colors and every body like to wear it.

Colored Regenerated Yarns

Tue Apr 06, 12:10:00 AM GMT-5  

Post a Comment

<< Home