Elsewhere: Yarny links for your clicking pleasure

Happy Friday, friends and knitters. This week, Kay beat me to a Garments of the Logalong roundup (thanks, Kay!), although I believe there have been a few more shared in the meantime, including this ooh la lovely. That’s among all the other innovation and splendor you’ll find on the #fringeandfriendslogalong feed.

And beyond that, Elsewhere:

Jaw-dropping sweater-photography series (thx, Kathleen)

– I could listen to Dianna talking about Norwegian wool all day long

Small-batch Donegal tweeds, Irish linens and Scottish cashmeres making me drool

– I’m loving the slow-fashion series on the State blog: part 1, part 2

– And this beautiful sentence: “Having dressed in a way that gives fast fashion the cold shoulder, feelings of resilience, creativity, and kindness are amplified.”

This vending machine stocks embroidery and felting kits. (Still wondering why there aren’t more yarn stores in airports …)

– Beautiful Pygora goats (photo above, by Kathy Cadigan)

Everything about this photo

DG’s latest blanket has me wanting to do Purl Soho’s Color Study Blanket log cabin style

– Just ordered a copy of Loved Clothes Last (thx, Katrina)

and …

Do YOU prewash your skeins?

IN SHOP NEWS: We’ve been gradually restocking from the holidays and have gotten in too many assorted things this week for me to detail! If you’ve been looking for something in particular, take another peek. (How’s that for least helpful shopkeeper ever? But if you have a question about something specific, please ask!)

Happy weekending, everyone—




28 thoughts on “Elsewhere

        • There are lots of a variety of breeds where I have to stop and think whether I’m looking at a goat or a sheep! Had I seen this photo without any text accompanying it, I wouldn’t have know what it was!

        • It’s not just you! Archaeologists find it so difficult to distinguish between fragmentary skeletons of sheep and goats that they made up a word, “ovicaprid”, to cover their bases. So I can feel *very confident* saying that that is a gorgeous ovicaprid up there!

          (If you’re a natural history nerd like me, you might find it interesting to peruse the subfamily that domesticated sheep, domesticated goats, musk ox, and a whole lotta other pretty wild bovines belong to, for a sense of context: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caprinae)

  1. Karen–I never thought about pre-washing yarn until I bought yarn from Miss Babs at the NYSW last October in Rhinebeck. The sales woman advised me to wash the teal yarn since I was doing colorwork with a white speckle. After reading the comments about Starting Point where I’m using a dark berry color, I washed all 5 of my skeins. Happy knitting, Heidi Cohen (aka @KnittedYarns)

    • I do think it’s a good idea if you’re working with something that might bleed. The only time I’ve ever really been in jeopardy of that, I just trusted what happened (nothing) when I blocked my swatch.

  2. I’m intrigued by the idea of prewashing skeins. I have a few yarns that I love the hand of after blocking but don’t enjoy knitting with. How do you dry the skeins? I am guessing that you press out the excess with a towel, but then do you just let it sit for days? Thanks so much for this lovely idea.

    • My husband and I hang our handspan on a sturdy hanger, on a rail in our spare bathtub and weigh the bottom end with a full spray bottle. (Handle goes over the bottom loop of the skein of yarn.) I’ve had to wash a few purchased skeins of hand dyed yarn that were washed in scented soaps. (Couldn’t knit with them until I got the scent out.) Worked great! Oh, and we use a gentle, non-scented shampoo on our wools. Yes, roll in a towel to get as much water out as possible.

    • I’ve never seen anyone wash skeins while still twisted up, like Julie apparently does! But then, I’m most used to washing yarn in the context of dyeing or wet finishing handspun. I’ve only washed mill spun yarn if the oils were driving me crazy, if there was evidence of color bleeding issues, or in order to firm up some loosely spun yarns via very mild fulling.

      I guess I think that the washing effect (in terms of removing excess dye, dirt and/or mill oils) would have to be more uniform if you untwist. If you dyed a skein twisted, you’d get uneven color so the inner parts are definitely not getting the same kind of water exposure as the outer areas. But certainly the skein stays tidier if it’s washed all twisted up. In the usual untwisted method, you leave the ties in place so no real tangling can occur (and maybe even add a couple, if your skein was only tied in 2 spots) — but it can look rather unkempt along the way.

      And yeah, whether you weight your skeins or not, you just blot and let them hang to dry. It’s not really different from washing a knitted piece. They might even dry faster, since the yarns in an untwisted skein get more airflow than when those strands are all knitted up.

      I’ve noticed that people seem to feel nervous about the idea of washing yarn, but it’s good to remember that if your skein was dyed post-spinning — especially if it was hand-dyed — then it’s already been washed at least once since it was spun (likely more than that, since it may have been prepped for dyeing and then washed again post-dyeing). And dyeing itself involves soaking the yarn in hot water, so you could think of that as a kind of wash (in water that just happens to have dye in it!).

  3. I loved everything about that photo too, which sent me down the Erica Heusser rabbit hole……there aren’t enough hours in the day to knit all of the lovelies out there, are there?!!! Thanks Karen. Have a great weekend!

  4. I loved the photographic series. How cool and I’d love to see behind the scenes. I think slow fashion and slow food have a lot in common. Maybe we want a slow life where we can know and love everything we have. We are tired of an instant potatoes lifestyle where things come and go at any whim. We want to be part of our lives.

  5. I’ve thought for a long time that a little airport kiosk that sells locally sourced yarns and little kits would be a good idea. Lots of gifting possibilites for the traveler, and maybe a little project to soothe those delays.

  6. As usual, fab Elsewhere with lots of great stuff to enjoy and learn from. FYI, re the camouflage knitwear photos, be sure to click through to the photographer Joseph Ford’s page to see the “live” versions of a couple of the photos – very amusing!

  7. I love those crochet-wrapped stones ! – but they’re cleverer than I could do …
    And I don’t see how anyone could possibly NOT take æons to make a blanket in garter stitch. :\

  8. I’ve considered yarn store in airport:
    1. Staffing. 7 am to 10 or 11 pm 7 days a week and all holidays
    2. RENT
    3. Not allowed to compensate by increasing pricing above suggested retail (?) really?
    4. Paperwork…OMG just to apply!!!

    • The closest existing analog to an airport yarn shop that I can think of (selling things to pass the time, high-SKU business) is the airport bookstore and, well, just think about what airport bookstores are like relative to regular bookstores! If an airport yarn shop were viable, I’m afraid it would wind up looking a lot more like the yarn section at a big box craft store than your beloved LYS.

      Now, I *could* imagine some entity like Martha Stewart Living placing knitting/crochet project kits in airport bookstores… that would be interesting, but again not the same thing as the dream of the airport yarn shop.

      But maybe it’s for the best (sigh)… a truly great airport yarn shop might result in a lot of fiber people missing their flights! ;-)

  9. Dianna’s video was so interesting, I took a shot at translating the captions in French so that French knitters could benefit from it too. I learned so much.
    And no I am not washing my skeins, no way – blocking is enough for me. Even when I frog and knit the yarn again, I don’t wash the yarn.

  10. Pingback: Mini Porter + Elsewhere | Fringe Association

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