Hello, ArtYarns.

Perhaps you recognize this basket of soft, shiny yarns.

That’s our stash of ArtYarns, some of the most indulgent skeins in the shop. The sheen of silk, the halo of mohair, and the sparkle of beads and sequins all conspire to create a glamorous yarn, a treat for the hands as well as the eyes. Although one skein is small, it’s enough to create a little kerchief, just as Anne knit up in white. When you’re considering treating yourself to a skein of ArtYarns Beaded Silk and Mohair, take a look at the sample to get a sense of how much fabric can come from one skein.

One of the new things Anne ordered for the shop this fall came from ArtYarns: kits with enough smooth, soft, and sparkly yarn to create a knit or crochet shawl.

You’ll find them just beneath the ArtYarns basket, by the desk. Come by the shop to take a closer look.

Chiffon.

Let this be my last Cascade addendum, the last of the contents of those 40 pound boxes to be introduced: say hello to a sumptuous new fingering weight yarn from Cascade, called Heritage Silk.

A few months ago, when we first ordered Heritage Silk, Anne got a single skein for us to knit up as a shop sample. That skein was passed to me, and as soon as I had wound it into a ball, I knew that I would love this yarn for socks. It’s a smooth yarn with the kind of high twist that makes for excellent stitch definition and well-wearing socks. Made from 85% no-nonsense superwash wool and 15% shiny, glamorous silk, Cascade Heritage Silk is a nice blend of basic and indulgent. I tried to knit a sock that reflected those qualities, and this is what I came up with: meet Chiffon.


Like my first sock pattern, Interrupted, Chiffon is knit from cuff to toe with a short-row heel, but is dressed up a bit with three bands of ruching. Come by the shop to see a sample of Chiffon, which you’ll find tucked into a cubby on the sock wall with the Heritage Silk yarn. Download the pattern for free on Ravelry, and please let me know what you think!

Claudia Hand Painted Yarns.

With August comes the new Fall yarns, and here is one of our most exciting acquisitions of the season: Claudia Hand Painted Yarns, out of Harrisonburg, VA. Anne fell in love with a silk sweater she saw at TNNA in June, and the rest is history, which is to say, the makings of that silk sweater are now in the shop. We’ve put kits together with 2 skeins of the Claudia Hand Painted Silk Lace in different but complimentary colorways, which are held together throughout the knitting of either a cardigan or a t-shirt. The kits include the yarn, the pattern, and a Hillsborough Yarn Shop project bag.


Obsessive sock knitter that I am, though, the real excitement for me is the Claudia Hand Painted Fingering yarn. Made of 100% extra fine merino, hand painted in bright variegated colorways, this yarn is squishy and soft but tightly plied, which should make for luxurious but long-wearing socks.

I’ve already knit a sample sock for the shop with this yarn, so you can get a feel for how it knits up. The pattern for said sample sock is forthcoming–a pattern of my own design, which I’m excited to release into the world as soon as I’m done editing it. Til then, you’ll be delighted to know that there are many wonderful free patterns for Claudia Hand Painted Fingering yarn. If you’re looking for a way to use this yarn, try Skew, Herringbone Rib Socks, or Roll Top Socks, ankle socks which actually take only one 50 gram skein. The Claudia Hand Painted Fingering yarn is about equivalent to Koigu in weight and yardage, so it’s a perfect substitute if any patterns for Koigu should happen to catch your eye.

Come by the shop to see Claudia Hand Painted yarns in person, to squeeze some skeins and admire the vivid colors!

Kusha Kusha.

The Kusha Kusha scarf gets a lot of attention at the shop. This is in part because of its unusual, organic-looking shape, almost like a strand of kelp. Another reason to take note of this scarf is its fiber content. Kusha Kusha is knit with two strands of lace weight yarn held together, one of which is 100% merino wool, the other of which is stainless steel wrapped in silk. The stainless steel gives memory to the yarn and the resulting fabric, so that you can crinkle it up or stretch it out and it holds its shape.

The Kusha Kusha scarf comes as a kit from Habu Textiles, complete with the pattern and a cone of each yarn. We’ve carried these kits at the shop for some time, but our supply was getting low. When we reordered this past week, we got many more colors than we’d ever had before, a spectrum of elegant pairings.

Make sure to take a look at this unusual scarf the next time you’re in the shop. If you’re curious to see what others have done with this kit and pattern, check out the Kushua Kusha Love group on Ravelry. See you at the shop!

Hello, Sulka. Hello, K’acha.

From time to time, our yarn displays need what we call “fluffing.” We pull the skeins down from their cubby, or out of their basket, and commence fluffing: we rewind loose skeins, make sure all colors are represented, and then stack them up in a pretty spectrum, that they might look their very best. I was doing just this when I rediscovered a pair of Mirasol yarns that looked so lovely, I thought I ought to direct some attention their way.


Sulka and K’acha are alike in fiber content, but different in weight. Because they are both single ply yarns made of merino wool, alpaca, and silk, they share neighboring nooks on the brown bookshelf in the corner. Sulka, the bulky weight one, takes the left half of these little cubbies, and K’acha, the dk weight one, takes the right.

I was poking around on Ravelry, seeing what folks were making with these yarns, and I saw all kinds of projects: sweaters for women, men, and children, scarves, shawls, hats, mittens, and cowls. To me, this is a perfect yarn for special accessories. The looseness of the single ply in this yarn makes for something exquisitely soft, but more likely to pill and shed than some other yarns. Sulka and K’acha may not be for everyday wear, but for a cowl or shawl, something soft to wear right around your neck on a special occasion, these luxurious yarns are the perfect choice. Particularly since they, like all our yarns, are 15% off during the month of July. Think about it!

Hello, Malabrigo.

Here is a yarn with a fanbase.

Malabrigo Silky Merino and Malabrigo Rios are back in stock! It’s been a long wait, and as we waited, our Malabrigo stash dwindled into a sad little stack of mismatching skeins. “Is the Malabrigo here yet?” became a common inquiry, always met with a sad shake of the head. Now that the full range of colors are back together, those sad skeins are looking much happier.

Above, you’ll see a slice of the Rios spectrum, a washable worsted weight wool. Below: Silky Merino, a dk weight single ply blend of, as the name suggests, silk and merino wool.

Come by the shop to take a look!

Schaefer.

We’ve been waiting quite a while for a box from Schaefer Yarns. We’d long ago sold out of their textured worsted weight wool, Nancy, whose colorways are named for memorable women throughout history, the likes of Julia Child, Clara Barton, Renata Tebaldi, and Clare Booth Luce, among many others. On Thursday, the box from Schaefer came at last, so the Hillsborough Yarn Shop is home to Nancy once more.

Schaefer Nancy comes in very large hanks of about 600 yards, enough for a shawl, shrug, or vest. We also received a selection of patterns for Nancy that are free with purchase of the yarn, if you’re looking for project ideas. 
For lace-knitters and silk-lovers, the real excitement in the Schaefer box was five shiny new skeins of Andrea. This 100% silk lace-weight yarn is truly exquisite. Behold!

There’s a limited amount of Andrea in stock, so if silk and lace are your weakness, don’t hesitate. See you at the shop!

What we’ve made room for, part 1.

Give a warm welcome to the newest yarns at the Hillsborough Yarn Shop.
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As I previously mentioned, Sawya is the latest from Mirasol: a worsted weight blend of pima cotton, alpaca, and silk in a bright bunch of colors. Just right for warm-weather knitting.
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Pictured below, hanging in two tiny baskets are two more warm-weather yarns: Haze and Mia, from the Queensland Collection and Takhi Yarns, respectively. Haze is a blend of corn viscose and cotton in a dk weight. Mia is a fluffy, thick-and-thin cotton, unusually textured for its fiber content, making it a nice substitute for wool where wool allergies are concerned.

Of course, we have plenty of new wooly yarns as well. From Cascade: Sitka, a bulky merino and mohair blend. We have three neutral colors, making the decision-making process simpler. Charcoal gray, brown, or beige?

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Also from the department of wooly wools: Kauni 8/2 Effektgarn, a self-striping fingering weight yarn with long color repeats, making a subtle gradation from one shade to the next. I find it particularly striking in fair isle patterns like this one. Or you might put it to use with a brioche pattern from Nancy Marchant’s book, which we just got in last week. Much of our first order of Kauni has already escaped in the shopping bags of customers who fell completely in love with it on sight. A dangerous situation, indeed.

     

This should do for one post. Tomorrow: the rest of the newest. For now.