Hello, Malabrigo Washted.

A brand new yarn from Malabrigo has arrived! Meet Washted.

Washted is a worsted weight, superwash merino, with 210 yards on each 100 gram skein, and it’s hand-dyed in rich variegated colors. It’s a lot like Malabrigo’s popular Rios yarn, except that Washted is single ply where Rios is plied.

The downside of single ply yarn is often discussed here at the shop, namely, that single ply yarns are the first to pill. The upside, however, is that the super soft merino wool is even softer in a single ply.

This makes Washted ideal for accessories that don’t see a lot of abrasion, like cowls, hats, and shawls. Looking through projects on Ravelry, I saw knitters using Washted for Nina Machlin Dayton’s “Civetta Cowl,” Lucia Ruiz de Aguirre’s “Patricia hat,” and Andrea Mowry’s “Nightshift” shawl, but there are so many inspiring worsted weight patterns out there – check out our “Worsted weight” Pinterest board for starters.

Look for Malabrigo Washted in the worsted weight section here at our shop, just above the Rios cubby!

Shibui Sample of the Month: Half and Half Cowl.

February is here, and with it, a new Shibui Sample of the Month! We offer a 10% discount on Shibui yarn purchased for our featured sample until the end of the month.

This month’s sample is the Churchmouse “Half and Half Cowl,” a simple ribbed cowl with a slit halfway up to create an opening over the shoulder.

“Half and Half Cowl” is knit with Shibui Drift, a worsted weight blend of 85% extra fine merino wool and 15% cashmere. It’s just as soft as that combination sounds, a perfect choice for a special accessory like this.

Come by the shop to before February 26th to try on the “Half and Half Cowl” and get Shibui Drift at 10% off to make one of your own!

 

Just a reminder–all sales are final on discounted items; there can be no exchanges, returns, or special orders. Thanks!

Kelbourne Woolens Building Blocks Collection Trunk Show!

We’re so excited to announce that we’ve just received a Trunk Show featuring Kelbourne Woolens Germantown. Come by the shop to see accessories from the Building Blocks Collection!

Germantown is a North American sourced yarn with a story to tell, a recreation of a classic wool that had been produced in Germantown, Pennsylvania, under a few different brand names since the mid-to-late 19th century.

The Building Blocks Collection consists of three basic patterns: a hat, a scarf, and mittens. Each one has three variations, taking knitters from the simplest stitches to more complicated patterns, one step at a time. I can see one of these patterns as a great gift for a new knitter, along with a few skeins of Germantown.

It’s great to finally touch knitted fabric made with Germantown, as Anne and I have admired it since its October release but frankly, haven’t had time to cast on and work with it ourselves.

Come by the shop to see the show, and get 10% off KW Germantown while you’re at it!

 

Just a reminder–all sales are final on discounted items; there can be no exchanges, returns, or special orders. Thanks!

Back in stock, show and tell: Berroco Ultra Wool and Ultra Wool DK.

This season, we seem to be constantly ordering and reordering Berroco Ultra Wool and Ultra Wool DK. Not long before we closed for our Thanksgiving break, I unpacked a bigger box than ever from Berroco, for it contained some new colors along with all our old favorites.

Ultra Wool and Ultra Wool DK are smooth and sturdy superwash wools, one of the few that suggests “tumble dry low” rather than “lay flat to dry.” They’re easy-care, practical, economical, and come in a wide range of solid and heathered colors; no wonder we’re selling so much of them!

The latest Berroco Portfolio collection features these yarns, and we were delighted when Berroco also sent us a sample of the cover sweater, Lori Versaci’s “Lane’s Island Pullover.” There’s nothing like a finished garment to give you a sense of how a particular yarn knits up, and this one has already compelled plenty of knitters to try Ultra Wool DK, many of whom return to it for other projects.

April was one of the first knitters we knew to complete an adult-sized sweater in Ultra Wool DK, and when she wore it in, singing the yarn’s praises, we were truly impressed. The cables of her “Bowery Tunic” show beautifully, and April didn’t report any of the out-of-control stretching that superwash wools can sometimes experience during blocking.

Margie has also been working with Ultra Wool DK of late, knitting not one, but two “Isabelline Cowls.” I never tire of seeing what an impact a change in color can have; this pair is a nice example of how low- and high-contrast color combinations can both work beautifully in stranded colorwork. And you might be surprised which of these has higher contrast – I was! Look at these photos through the black and white filter on your camera and you’ll see what I mean.

Ultra Wool DK is great for crochet projects, too! Check out Linda’s amazing blanket for proof positive.

Look for Ultra Wool and Ultra Wool DK here at the shop, and keep an eye out for something new from Berroco, too… more on that soon!

Hello, Kelbourne Woolens Germantown.

The inspiring women of Kelbourne Woolens have just released their fourth new yarn, one for each season of their 10th year in business. Meet Germantown!

Germantown is a North American sourced yarn with a story to tell, a recreation of a classic wool that had been produced in Germantown, Pennsylvania, under a few different brand names since the mid-to-late 19th century.

Courtney Kelley, one of the founders of Kelbourne Woolens, writes beautifully on the KW blog about her dream to remake Germantown, and what it took to realize that dream. Also on their blog, historian Nic Tenaglia writes more about the history of Germantown yarns, how they were produced and where they got their name – a very interesting read!

Germantown is made of 100% North American wool, Territorial wool, to be precise. On the KW blog, Kelley elaborates that Territorial wool is “a bit of an archaic name for wool that comes from the former US Territories, broadly anything west of the Missouri River, but in the case of Germantown, mostly from Montana, Idaho, and Wyoming. The most prevalent breeds are Rambouillet, Targhee, Columbia, and Polpay.” This makes for a worsted spun yarn with a smooth texture, soft hand, and nice elasticity.

With a suggested gauge of 16-20 stitches over 4″, Germantown is worsted weight, that versatile category in which most of us begin our knitting and crocheting. The Kelbourne Woolens team see this yarn as a classic basic wool for beginners as well as more advanced stitchers – easy to work with, with good stitch definition, but at a reasonable price for a domestically-produced yarn of this quality. With that in mind, they’ve created the KW Building Blocks collection.

This collection consists of three basic patterns: a hat, a scarf, and mittens. Each one has three variations, taking knitters from the simplest stitches to more complicated patterns, one step at a time. I can see one of these patterns as a great gift for a new knitter, along with a few skeins of Germantown. You can read more about KW Building Blocks on their blog, and buy the patterns on Ravelry or here at the shop as an in-store sale.

Looking for a bigger project to sink your teeth into? Consider Karen Templer’s “Anna Vest,” a textured waistcoat knit with Germantown. Plenty more worsted weight pattern inspiration can be found on our HYS Pinterest boards, too!

Look for Germantown in our worsted weight section here at the shop!

Back in stock: Classy mini-skeins.

Dream in Color Classy mini-skeins are back in stock, and how!

Dream in Color only occasionally produces these 50-yard mini-skeins of their worsted weight superwash wool, Classy, and the color selection is different every time. Our last restock back in June was our biggest yet, and it sold out so quickly that we requested an equally big batch as soon as they were available again. Happy to report that the time has come!

Some are highly variegated, some are semi-solid, some are speckled, and some are hybrids, but all are hand-dyed, so there’s some color variation in each skein.

Nancy Leuer’s “Technicolor Cowl” calls for 8 of these mini-skeins, and just as before, I’ve had fun creating color combinations and kits for this project. Because we have somewhat different colors in this group than last time, I’ve created six brand new colorways.

Don’t feel limited to these combinations, however – consider them a jumping off point for your own unique cowls.

Look for “Technicolor Cowl” kits and Dream in Color Classy mini-skeins in the worsted weight section!

Show and tell: Malabrigo.

It’s high time for another round of show and tell! Today I’m here to share some finished projects that started life as yarn on our shelves, and they all have one thing in common: they’re all knit with yarn from the beloved Uruguayan company Malabrigo.

Above is Janet’s first-ever knitting project, a ribbed scarf made with the worsted weight, hand-dyed Malabrigo Rios. Rios is one of the most popular yarns in our shop because of its versatility, smooth, soft texture, and vibrant colors. Well done, Janet!

Here’s another scarf in Rios, showing a more subtle, tonally variegated colorway. The pattern is “Rockcliffe” and the knitter is Donita, who comes back to Rios again and again, as so many of us do.

I knit this little “Dog Star” with Malabrigo Arroyo for a friend who’s having a baby next month, having made the same sweater for another pregnant friend earlier in the year. Malabrigo’s superwash yarns are perfect for baby things, as they’re easy to care for and soft to the touch.

Malabrigo yarns also play well with others. Glen used Malabrigo Sock in natural white as the background color in his “Broken Seed Stitch Socks,” letting another variegated yarn shine.

Winnie took a similar approach with her “ZickZack Scarf,” pairing a semisolid Malabrigo Sock with the self-striping Schoppel-Wolle Crazy Zauberball for a lovely effect.

Emily used a variety of leftover yarns, including bits and pieces of Malabrigo Rios, in this “Randolph Raccoon,” a gift for her son. Toys like these are an excellent use of odds and ends, which is why I never get rid of even the smallest length of leftover yarn – Emily did a great job putting some of hers to use!

Many thanks to the talented knitters who shared the projects above, and to everyone who starts their projects with a trip to the Hillsborough Yarn Shop. We love seeing what you make!

Back in stock: Classy mini-skeins.

Dream in Color Classy mini-skeins are back in stock, and how!

Dream in Color only occasionally produces these 50-yard mini-skeins of their worsted weight superwash wool, Classy, and the color selection is different every time. This order of mini-skeins is our biggest yet, boasting an astonishing 63 colors!

Melon & lime.

Some are highly variegated, some are semi-solid, some are speckled, and some are hybrids, but all are hand-dyed, so there’s some color variation in each skein.

Variegates & speckles.

Cherries & pastry.

I had a lot of fun arranging them in 8-skein combinations for “Technicolor Cowls.”

Denim & chambray.

Jewels & gems.

Nancy Leuer’s “Technicolor Cowl” is a simple but entertaining project with a focus on color.

It’s knit in the round, with stripes of stockinette and reverse stockinette that make a squishy, textured fabric from this springy superwash merino yarn. The pattern is free when you purchase eight Dream in Color Classy mini-skeins for the project.

Eggplant & pepper.

Moss & bark.

We’ve created kits in each of the colorways shown here, so if you’re struck by any of these combinations, it’s easy to pick up all the materials you need for the project.

A bundle of colorful mini-skeins and an easy pattern are the makings of a lovely gift, too!

Look for Dream in Color Classy mini-skeins in the worsted weight section, and have fun picking colors for a “Technicolor Cowl” of your own!

Hello, Brooklyn Tweed Ranch 01.

We are delighted to announce that Brooklyn Tweed’s newest yarn has arrived!

Ranch 01 is a worsted weight, limited edition, ranch-specific Rambouillet yarn, which means every fiber in these skeins was sourced from a single flock of sheep living on Bare Ranch in Surprise Valley, CA.

Brooklyn Tweed has always sought to highlight single breed wools and support US ranchers with sustainable environmental practices. This project allows them to shine a spotlight on the people and practices behind their yarns, one ranch at a time. You can read more about Bare Ranch on the BT blog and get a good sense of the people who made this yarn possible.

After the wool was sourced at Bare Ranch, scoured in South Carolina, and spun in Maine, it traveled to Pennsylvania to be hand-dyed with natural pigments at Green Matters Natural Dye Company. Ranch 01 colors are created with plant-, mineral-, and insect-based natural dyes, pigments that need to be cared for differently than conventional dyes.

With this in mind, Brooklyn Tweed has created a tip sheet to go with Ranch 01, with information about naturally dyed yarn and how to care for it – we’ll include one with each purchase of Ranch 01 here at our shop.

What to knit with Ranch 01? At 220 yards per hank, you can get a hat or pair of mitts out of one skein, and a scarf or cowl out of two or three skeins. Look for a binder of Ranch 01 patterns here at the shop for ideas!

The yarn arrived today, but already it’s selling quickly – come by and see it while supplies last! The small-batch nature of this yarn means we can’t reorder it, and when it’s gone, it’s gone.

See you at the shop!

Shibui Sample of the Month: Comfort Zone.

April is here, and with it, a new Shibui Sample of the Month! We offer a 10% discount on Shibui yarn purchased for our featured sample til the end of the month.

This month’s sample is “Comfort Zone,” by Elizabeth Smith, a striped garter stitch wrap with a ribbed edge.

“Comfort Zone” is knit with four shades of Shibui Drift, a worsted weight blend of 85% extra fine merino wool and 15% cashmere.

Come by the shop to before April 29th to see “Comfort Zone” and get Shibui Drift at 10% off to make one of your own!

Just a reminder–all sales are final on discounted items; there can be no exchanges, returns, or special orders. Thanks!