Welcoming Wool and the Gang Yarns to our Shelves

If you visit the shop you may notice an exciting new addition to our shelves – we now stock Wool and the Gang Yarns.

 

Wool and the Gang Yarns

Wool and the Gang Yarns

For those of you who aren’t already familiar with them, Wool and the Gang are on a mission to help people embrace the caring face of fashion and re-connection to their creative selves.

Founders Jade Harwood and Aurelie Popper met while studying Textile Design at Central Saint Martins in London. After school they gained experience together at Alexander McQueen and Balmain in Paris. That’s when they were discovered by former model, world traveller and yarn lover Elisabeth Sabrier. Together they founded Wool and the Gang.

The company has a strong ecological focus, with natural fibres such as wool and alpaca being prioritised as renewable and biodegradable, and also working with fashion factories to repurpose their fashion waste into new yarns to reduce landfill.

Billie Jean, one of the yarns we are now stocking, is made from 100% upcycled pre-consumer denim waste. By using no chemicals and no dyes, they manage to save 20,000 litres of water per kilogram of upcycled material! Billie Jean knits to an aran weight.

 

We also have a selection of Feeling Good Yarn – a kitten-soft, chunky-weight alpaca which knits up light as a feather, and Crazy Sexy Wool – a super-chunky, 100% peruvian wool yarn, which comes in a range of shades which are perfectly on-trend for fashionable chunky knits.

 

There are a selection of free patterns available for these yarns, or get creative and use them to knit up your favourite aran, chunky or super-chunky pattern! We can always help you find the right pattern if you pop into the shop.

To read much more about them or to send an enquiry to buy some, just head over to our website HERE.

Breezy Summer Lace Knitting

Well, after all that snow this Spring the sunshine has finally arrived here in Bovey Tracey!

But does that mean we stop knitting? Of course not! It just means that we get to enjoy working on airy, openwork lace projects and using the lovely cool cotton and linen yarns which are available to use this year.

To help inspire you we have rounded up a selection of our favourite patterns and yarns to keep you going through what we hope will be a delightfully warm and sunny spring and summer!

Don’t forget, if these patterns catch your eye but you don’t know how to do this style of knitting, we have Anniken’s Easy Lace Knitting workshop on Wednesday 9th May – it still has spaces on so just call 01626 836203 to book.

Anniken Allis has a new pattern available in The Knitter Magazine, Tor Grass, which uses Rowan’s new Fine Denim Lace yarn – a recycled denim yarn which gives a delicate stitch definition, perfect for showing off the intricate shapes of Anniken’s pattern.


Not only is Denim Lace a great choice for summer knits due to the high cotton content and fine, lightweight spin, Rowan also have a booklet of 4 designs available which is FREE when you buy the yarn!

Anniken was sporting the perfect summer garment when she came in to teach a workshop the other day – her lace poncho, Mist on the Moor.

Knitted in Schoppel Zauberball with added beading, this would be an ideal accessory to throw on when the sun goes down and you need a little warmth on your shoulders.

And of course, we are still enjoying the new WYS Florist Collection – these British-spin sock yarns are available in a delicate palette inspired by flowers – perfect if you’ve been spending time in your garden and are loving the colours.

If fine yarns aren’t your thing, we have a silky new linen-blend yarn in a DK weight from Sirdar.

Made with 10% linen and 90% lycocell, a natural, man made fibre made with wood pulp from sustainable tree farms, this yarn is incredibly soft, drapey and breathable, with a gorgeous sheen.

So, don’t put those needles away just yet – pop in and have a play with our summer yarns, a browse through our patterns, and find a project to see you through the heatwave!

 

 

 

 

Beautiful British Yarns from West Yorkshire Spinners this Spring

West Yorkshire Spinners continue to be an exciting British brand to watch, constantly working to produce new and excellent quality yarns at a really affordable price.

We were delighted with our most recent delivery from ‘up North’.

Firstly, their stunning new Florist Collection in Signature 4ply. This range of shades has been inspired by the delicate, natural shades of flowers – from Peony to Cornflower, in a range of solids and variegated colourways.

There is also a very pretty collection of patterns WYS have produced to support these yarns.

The collection features six designs by Juliana Yeo, are a combination of sock and shawl patterns, inspired by a delicate floral palette. The stunning shawl designs are both elegant and eye-catching, making them perfect for all seasons. A touch of fun is brought to the collection with the addition of three striking sock designs that complement the intricate prints of the Florist range.

Here are a few of our favourites!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Florabella, the pink crochet shawl above by Anna Nikipirowicz, is actually available separately)

WYS Signature 4ply costs £7.20 for 400m which is great value!

Next we have WYS Illustrious Naturals.
A luxurious blend of 70% Falkland Wool and 30% British Alpaca, this DK weight yarn is a great example of just how soft and warm British yarns can be. The Falkland Wool gives bouncy and crisp stitch definition, whilst the British Alpaca adds softness and lightness. WYS have made the most of the natural colour palette in this collection – did you know that undyed yarns are often softer than dyed yarns due to the fact that they go through less processing?

WYS Illustrious Naturals costs £10.95 per 100g hank and we stock it in 4 lovely undyed shades.

If you’re popping in, do ask to see the new yarns and have a browse through the patterns!

 

 

 

 

 

Celebrating the Wonders of Wool

Every year the Campaign for Wool organise a week of events designed to educate, inspire and promote the benefits of wool.

We’ll be having our usual sale as part of those events, but thought we’d contribute to the celebrations with a post all about the properties of this amazing fibre.

 

Using only grass and water as it’s raw materials, unlike synthetics which are mainly derived from plastics and requiring fossil fuel (oil), wool is one of the most versatile, sustainable and natural resources we have. As if that wasn’t enough reason in itself to wear wool, it’s properties far outstrip most of the rival fibres on the market. Among it’s many features are:

Breathability: wool fibres are crimped, and when tightly packed together, form millions of tiny pockets of air. This unique structure allows it to absorb and release moisture—either in the atmosphere or perspiration from the wearer—without compromising its thermal efficiency. Wool has a large capacity to absorb moisture vapour (up to 30 per cent of its own weight) next to the skin, making it extremely breathable.

Resilience: wool fibres resist tearing and are able to be bent back on themselves over 20,000 times without breaking. Due to its crimped structure, wool is also naturally elastic, and so wool garments have the ability to stretch comfortably with the wearer, but are then able to return to their natural shape, making them resistant to wrinkling and sagging. Wool therefore maintains its appearance in the longer term, adding value to the product and its lifespan. Wool is also hydrophillic—it is highly absorbent, and retains liquids—and so dyes richly while remaining colourfast, without the use of chemicals.

Suitable for all climates: thanks to its hygroscopic abilities, wool constantly reacts to changes in body temperature, maintaining its wearer’s thermophysical comfort in both cold and warm weather.

Safe: it is not known to cause allergies and does not promote the growth of bacteria. Thanks to its high water and nitrogen content, wool is naturally flame-retardant, and has a far higher ignition threshold than many other fibres, will not melt and stick to the skin causing burns, and produces less noxious fumes that cause death in fire situations. Finally, wool also has a naturally high level of UV protection, which is much higher than most synthetics and cotton.

(Thanks to The Campaign for Wool for the science there!)

We know from our experience here at Spin A Yarn that the wool garments that our customers bring in – sometimes decades old – with the correct care, remain vibrant, soft and warm – often handed down from generation to generation. We have even seen historic gansey jumpers and heirloom christening blankets – all cherished and ready to serve a new owner.

Fishermen wearing traditional gansey style jumpers. These were knitted with the sheep’s natural oils left in the yarn, which afforded waterproofing in all weathers.

If you’ve always thought ‘wool is too itchy for me’ or ‘wool is too hard to care for’ then never fear. Our customers are often surprised at how incredibly soft and smooth some of our merino yarns are – virtually as non-prickly as cotton, perfect for the most sensitive necks or small babies. Plus there are now a huge array of yarns which can be machine washed – and even tumble dried! – due to new processing methods. Our experienced staff can talk you through your concerns.

If you’re still in any doubt, pop in to the shop and ask to try some of our many pre-made samples up – once you move to natural fibres, we’ve found it’s hard to go back!

 

 

Soft new shades and elegant patterns in Rowan Cocoon

We were delighted to see some new shades in one of Rowan’s most classic yarns Cocoon, and with them a book full of elegant, feminine patterns.

Rowan Timeless Cocoon pattern book

Our favourite of the new shades is this dusty pink. It’s flattering on so many different people, and yet soft enough to almost act as a neutral with stronger colours.

Rowan Cocoon Misty Rose

Cocoon is a chunky weight roving yarn – meaning it’s a single ply, loosely spun yarn – with a blend of 80% merino wool and 20% kid mohair. The mohair gives it body and warmth, and enough stitch definition to still let cables and other details pop, and the kid mohair lends a gentle halo to the finished knitting.

Rowan Timeless Cocoon Scarf

We particularly love this jumper pattern with delicate slipped stitch cabling – and anticipate it’s going to be very popular in the shop!

Rowan Timeless Cocoon Jumper

The Timeless Cocoon pattern collection has been put together by Rowan favourites such as Lisa Richardson, Brandon Mably and Sarah Hatton.

Rowan Timeless Cocoon Patterns

What do you think of the new collection?

Rowan Cocoon Shades

 

New super-squishy alpaca chunky in for Winter

We have a gorgeous new arrival here at Spin A Yarn…King Cole Superfine Alpaca Chunky.

This sumptuous natural Alpaca yarn comes in 5 soft neutral shades, Fawn, Koala, Camel, Charcoal and Grey. We know our customers love natural shades, and we find undyed yarn has a special softness all of it’s own. If you’re planning a trip to the shop, make sure you pick it up and give it a squeeze!

The yarn is supported by a beautiful book full patterns – from Socks, Hats & Scarves to Vest tops and shawls. With most projects only requiring 1 to 2 balls, this book is a fantastic cost-effective way of adding some luxurious natural fibre to your wardrobe. Click here to view the yarn on our site – as usual to order, pop in, email an enquiry through or just give us a call!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

King Cole Alpaca Chunky basket

The cutest Adriafil dress pattern – free with yarn!

When Adriafil made their new patterns available to us recently, we just knew that we had to have a sample of this sweet little dress made up immediately.

Adriafil dress with pattern

Adriafil Knitcol is one of our all-time favourite yarns here at Spin A Yarn. It’s a self-patterning yarn, which means that the manufacturers have cleverly dyed the yarn in such a way that when knitted up it makes a lovely pattern, giving the impression that you’ve spent hours knitting complicated fair-isle patterns, when you’ve actually just knitted straight stocking-stitch!

Adriafil KnitCol with dress

DK weight, 100% merino and machine washable, our customers have always loved it for children’s knits as well as bright and fun accessories. As you can see, it looks quite different in the ball than it does knitted up.

Adriafil KnitCol shelf

Fortunately Adriafil provided us with a helpful swatch chart which shows how all the different shades look when knitted.

Adriafil Knitcol Shade Card

Aren’t they clever?

The dress pattern is free from Spin A Yarn when buying the yarn from us to make it – just ask one of our friendly staff members if you’re interested in making it.

Rowan Softyak – Special End of Season Offer

Being a British yarn brand, Rowan Yarns know all about the unpredictability of our weather and the importance of having ‘transitional’ items in a wardrobe – those cardis, jumpers and cowls which are just right for an unseasonably cool Spring/Summer day, and also perfect for a sunny winter’s day.

It feels like that kind of weather is on it’s way now, so we’re offering

10% off all in-stock Rowan Softyak!

Click here to view the yarn on our website, or read on to learn more about it.Softyak yarn

We were intrigued when Rowan introduced Softyak, an exciting new blend – 76% cotton, 15% yak and 9% nylon. Whilst yak might not be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of Rowan, the fibres are beautifully soft and give the yarn a lovely mottled look.

Tibetan Yak

The yarn is a chainette construction which, as we know from Rowan Lima and Alpaca Merino, results in a bouncy, loft yarn which is warm yet breathable. And even better – the yarn is static resistant and anti-microbial!

Naturally there are some beautiful patterns to accompany Softyak. Rowan Magazine 61 particularly features some gorgeous patterns which really make use of the subtle colours and crisp stitch definition.

Our favourite is Periwinkle by Martin Storey, a cropped cardi which looks great on all ages – we have a sample of this one in the shop if you want to try it.

Softyak Periwinkle

Clovelly is a relaxed and slouchy jumper with more cables than you can shake a stick at – more classic Martin Storey!

Softyak Clovelly

Rockling is exactly the type of cosy card which can be thrown on in all weathers:

Rockling Softyak

And Bommie combines traditional fair-isle motifs with geometric designs for a contemporary twist.

The discount is only while stocks last, so pop into the shop and ask to see the Softyak samples if you want see how it knits up.

 

New Rowan Yarns coming this Autumn

Blackberries are already ripening, and whilst we are still having some sunny days, there’s already a slight hint of Autumn in the air…which means that we’re getting very excited about the launch of some lovely new Rowan yarns and pattern books!

Rowan Design Collections 2017-18

First up we will be getting Valley Tweed in. Rowan are returning to their roots with this traditional 100% wool 4ply tweed, made in Yorkshire.

You really get a feel from it from this footage of the Valley Tweed photoshoot:

It will be accompanied by a book of 7 designs by Lisa Richardson, and we think this pretty moss-stitch jacket will be particularly popular.

Valley Tweed - Braden

Braden Jacket by Lisa Richardson

Next up is Cashmere Tweed, made with extrafine merino and a luxurious 20% cashmere. Very exciting – there’ll be a collection of 7 Scandinavian and Icelandic inspired knits by Martin Storey to accompany it. Isn’t this hat and scarf combo perfect!

Rowan Cashmere Tweed Wilkie Hat

Wilkie Hat and Scarf by Martin Storey

We think these yarns and their pattern collections are going to usher in a return to what we know and love Rowan best for – wonderful quality yarns, soft and flattering colours, and superb patterns.

Lastly, Rowan have released a new pattern book for Brushed Fleece and Joyce is ordering in lots of the new colours in this versatile yarn. Brushed Fleece Knits features 8 designs from Quail Studio – classics with a contemporary twist. Brushed Fleece is a yarn which looks heavy but is actually incredibly light and warm!

Rowan Brushed Fleece Knits

Rowan Brushed Fleece Knits

The new Rowan Magazine 62 has already arrived at the shop. There are too many lovely patterns to choose from but we love this eye-catching Alpaca Merino Jacket by Lisa Richardson.

Rowan Magazine 62 - Marr

Rowan Magazine 62 – Marr

And as usual there are cables and fair-isle galore!

Rowan Magazine 62 - Fumbar, Farnley and Sykes

Rowan Magazine 62 – Fumbar, Farnley and Sykes

To order Mag 62 or to put your name down for a copy of the others, just give us a call on 01626 836203 or email customerservices@spinayarndevon.co.uk.

Introducing…Sirdar Colourwheel

Sirdar Colourwheel

If you pass our shop window your eye might well be caught by our new yarn, Sirdar Colourwheel. This yarn is fantastic value at £11.00 for approx 520m per ball, which includes this free lacy scarf pattern printed on the ball band!

We can also provide the free pattern which is photographed on the ball band, for a pretty lacy shawlette – just ask when buying:

Sirdar have published a lovely collection of one-ball patterns for this yarn, including many in crochet – a real treat for our crochet fans who don’t usually have such a big choice! The yarn is a very practical 80% acrylic/20% wool blend and thanks to the gorgeous colourways will be absolutely perfect for kids knits and blankets as it is machine washable.

How pretty do the different shades look knitted up?

Sirdar COLOURWHEEL Shades

To buy this yarn just pop into the shop, give us a call on 01626 836203 or to read more online go here: Sirdar Colourwheel.