YarnSub Newsletter

February 2021


Newly-published books

[Book: 'Classic Knits of the 1980s' by Sandy Black] [Book: 'Knitting The Galaxy' by Tanis Gray] [Book: 'Twisted Stitch Sourcebook' by Norah Gaughan]

I always thought of the 1980s as an embarrassing era in the history of knitting—a time of adults wearing sweaters that looked like they'd been designed by children. Sandy Black's Classic Knits of the 1980s made me rethink. The designs she highlights are colorful and bold, but don't look childish. So where did I get the idea that 80s designs are so terrible? I suppose because I saw so many bad examples on British television! But maybe what I saw on TV wasn't representative, just like "hilarious" Christmas sweaters aren't representative of hand-knitting designs nowadays. While there may have been a lot of dodgy eighties knitwear on TV, Sandy Black's book clearly shows that's not the whole story. The hand-knitting designs she's chosen from the eighties are vibrant, un-self conscious and technically challenging. I can find nothing to be embarrassed about there.

I'm guessing that any fan of Star Wars will find something they'd like to make in Knitting The Galaxy. If you're after something subtle there's a very pretty shawl with just a low-key "Rebel Alliance" lace motif. Or if you want to tell the world how much you love all things Star Wars, kit yourself out with a Darth Vader sweater, some R2-D2 mittens and your own Death Star!

It's almost like you're able to draw lines on your knitting with the techniques in the Twisted Stitch Sourcebook. The patterned fabric is sturdier than lace and lighter than cables. I noticed that Norah Gaughan includes separate instructions for "combined knitters" and I don't think I've ever seen that in a knitting book before. She says she included them because she regularly comes across knitters in her classes who knit that way. Apparently they often don't even know that they do it! (It's useful to know though: see below if you're not sure which style of knitter you are!) The Twisted Stitch technique is well explained and I love how she's made use of it in the designs.

See all newly published books >

What style of knitter are you?

It's important to know if you don't knit in the "standard" (also called "Western") style. Most knitting pattern instructions are written for standard knitters. If you know that you knit in a different style then you can adjust the instructions accordingly, otherwise you may end up with unexpected results.

Note that I'm not talking about whether you knit with the yarn in your right hand (English / American / throwing method) or your left (Continental / picking). Here I'm talking about the direction that you take the yarn around the needle when making a stitch.

Western

making knit and purl stitches by taking the yarn around the needle in the clockwise direction

Western knitters make both knit and purl stitches by taking the yarn in a clockwise direction around the needle, as the tip faces away from you. The right half ('right leg') of the stitch is always at the front of the needle.

Eastern

making knit and purl stitches by taking the yarn around the needle in the anti-clockwise direction

Eastern knitters make all stitches by taking the yarn in an anti-clockwise direction around the needle. The right leg of the stitch is always at the back of the needle. To avoid twisting the stitches, they have to put the needle through the back loop.

Combined

making knit stitches clockwise and purl stitches anti-clockwise

Combined knitters make knit stitches in a clockwise direction and purl stitches in an anti-clockwise direction. This puts the right leg of the stitch at the front of the needle after making a knit stitch but at the back after making a purl stitch. Therefore combined knitters will sometimes need to work through the front loop and sometimes through the back loop, to avoid unwanted twist in the stitch. The important thing is that they always knit through the right leg of the stitch, whether it's at the front or back of the needle.

Unwanted twist in stitches

So long as a knitter puts the needle through the right leg of the stitch, then the end result in the knitted fabric is the same for all the different styles of knitting. However, if the left leg of the stitch is at the front of the needle, it can be easy to put the needle through it by mistake, which will give an unwanted twist in the stitch.

making knit and purl stitches by working through the left leg of the stitch

Working through the left leg of the stitch for knit and purl - don't do this!

There are occasions when a designer wants to twist a stitch in this way, but it's unusual, so they'll make it clear in the pattern. Most often when I see it, the knitter doesn't realize it's a mistake. It's good to put it right, as unwanted twisted stitches make the knitting look uneven, change the gauge of the fabric, and make some increases and decreases difficult or impossible to work correctly.

knitting sample with alternating rows of twisted stitches

And although it's common to call these '"twisted stitches", it's not the same thing as the Twisted Stitch technique in Norah Gaughan's book!

New and discontinued yarns

New yarn: Purl Soho Coorie

New yarn: Purl Soho Coorie – Image © Purl Soho

New

Big Twist Yarns
Soft Touch – Aran – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors

Borgo de'Pazzi
Amore Cotton Sport – Sport – 85% Cotton, 15% Polyester – 2 ply – Solid colors

Cleckheaton
Brushstrokes Hand Dyed 5-ply – Sport – 50% Acrylic, 50% Nylon – Plied – Multicolored

DROPS Design
DROPS Wish – Super Bulky – 50% Alpaca, 33% Cotton, 17% Wool – Fiber-filled net – Solid colors, Semi-solid colors

Dale of Norway / Dalegarn
Merino 22 – DK – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – S on S plied – Solid colors

K&C (from Joann)
Willow – Worsted – 100% Acrylic – Thick and thin – Solid colors

Knit Picks
Memento Cotton – Worsted – 100% Cotton – Plied – Multicolored

Knitcrate
Audine Wools Twinkle DK – DK – 80% Merino Wool, 10% Cashmere, 10% Metallic – Plied – Solid colors with metallic

Lana Gatto
Milo – DK – 100% Cotton – Plied – Solid colors
Positano – Sport – 72% Cotton, 28% Viscose – Plied – Gradient
Sorrento – Sport – 50% Linen, 50% Viscose – Plied – Semi-solid colors

Lang Yarns
Carly – DK – 80% Cotton, 20% Nylon – Fiber core wrapped – Solid colors
Linello – DK – 40% Linen, 32% Cotton, 28% Viscose – Tweedy – Self-striping (gradient transition)
Liza – Sport – 70% Bamboo Viscose, 20% Merino Superwash Wool, 10% Silk – Plied – Solid colors
Lotus – Sport – 60% Cotton, 40% Cashmere – Tweedy – Marled
Wool Addicts Joy – Heavy Worsted – 50% Cotton, 50% Tencel / Lyocell – S on S plied – Solid colors

Lion Brand
Re-Line – Aran – 53% Linen, 47% Cotton – Crepe – Solid colors
Re-Play – Aran – 100% Tencel / Lyocell – Tape – Solid colors
Sunset Nights – Worsted – 90% Acrylic, 10% Polyester – Sequinned – Self-striping (marl transition)

Naturally Yarns
NZ Luxury – DK – 55% Alpaca, 35% Merino Wool, 10% Possum – Plied with a soft haze
Omana – Fingering – 40% Alpaca, 35% Merino Superwash Wool, 25% Acrylic – Single ply – Solid colors

Novita
Merino 4-ply – Fingering – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors
Merino DK – DK – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Crepe – Solid colors

Patons (Australia)
Wanderer 8-ply – DK – 100% Corriedale Wool – Plied – Marled colors

Phildar
Phil Frenchy – Heavy Worsted – 64% Acrylic, 22% Wool, 9% Nylon, 5% Synthetic – Plied – Solid colors, Heathers

Premier Yarns
Just Cotton – Aran – 85% Cotton, 15% Polyester – Plied – Solid colors, Marls
Just Worsted – Aran – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors

Purl Soho
Coorie – Sport – 100% Kid Mohair – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors
Woolly Wool – Super Bulky – 100% Wool – Single ply – Solid colors, Heathers

Queensland Collection
Dungarees Paint – Sport – 95% Cotton, 5% Synthetic – 2 ply – Dappled colors
Kathmandu Fingering – Fingering – 85% Merino Wool, 10% Silk, 5% Cashmere – Tweedy – Tweed colors

Schachenmayr Original
Baby Smiles Easy Cotton – DK – 50% Acrylic, 50% Cotton – S on S plied – Solid colors

Sirdar
Cashmere Merino Silk DK – DK – 75% Merino Superwash Wool, 20% Silk, 5% Cashmere – S on S plied – Solid colors
Snuggly Cashmere Merino Silk 4-ply – Fingering – 75% Merino Superwash Wool, 20% Silk, 5% Cashmere – S on S plied – Solid colors
Snuggly Cashmere Merino Silk DK – DK – 75% Merino Superwash Wool, 20% Silk, 5% Cashmere – S on S plied – Solid colors

String Theory Colorworks
Ohm – Fingering – 75% Corriedale Wool, 25% Nylon – Plied – Solid colors, Tonal colors, Multicolored
Volt – Fingering – 90% Targhee Wool, 10% Nylon – Plied – Solid colors, Tonal colors, Multicolored

Stylecraft
You & Me DK – DK – 80% Acrylic, 20% Nylon – Plied – Self-striping (fair-isle effect)

Trendsetter Yarns
Maldives – Heavy Worsted – 50% Cotton, 43% Linen Viscose, 7% Nylon – Bouclé – Solid colors
Streaker – DK – 50% Cotton, 50% Soy – Plied – Self-striping

We Are Knitters
Merifine – Aran – 100% Merino Wool – Plied – Solid colors

Discontinued

Amano Yarns
Colca – Worsted – 56% Baby Alpaca, 44% Silk – Crepe – Solid colors

Bergère de France
Baltic – Bulky – 60% Acrylic, 40% Nylon – Plied
Jaspée – Aran – 80% Acrylic, 20% Wool – Plied – Heathered colors
Julienne – Sport – 100% Cotton – S on S plied – Self-striping
Le Velours – Heavy Worsted – 100% Polyester – Chenille – Solid colors, Semi-solid colors
Sport – Worsted – 51% Superwash Wool, 49% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors
Teddy – Bulky – 100% Nylon – Faux fur – Solid colors

Berroco
Catena – Bulky – 94% Merino Wool, 6% Nylon – Chained – Solid colors, Heathers
Estiva – Bulky – 100% Cotton – Tape – Gradient
Suede – Worsted – 100% Nylon – Tape – Semi-solid colors
Vibe – Heavy Worsted – 45% Organic Cotton, 45% Wool, 10% Nylon – Fuzzy chain – Solid colors

Cascade Yarns
Avalon – Heavy Worsted – 50% Acrylic, 50% Cotton – Crepe – Solid colors, Multicolored
Eco Cloud – Aran – 70% Merino Wool, 30% Alpaca – Chained – Undyed
Longwood Sport – Sport – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – S on S plied – Solid colors, Self-striping
Melilla – Aran – 45% Silk, 35% Merino Wool, 20% Nylon – Tweedy – Self-striping (gradient transition)
Melilla Fingering – Fingering – 45% Silk, 35% Wool, 20% Nylon – Tweedy – Self-striping (gradient transition)
Mondo – Jumbo – 50% Superfine Alpaca, 50% Wool – Plied – Solid colors
North Shore – DK – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors, Fair-isle / Jacquard effect
Roslyn – DK – 65% Wool, 35% Silk – Tweedy – Tweed colors
Tangier – Aran – 50% Silk, 17% Acrylic, 17% Rayon, 16% Cotton – Tweedy – Self-striping (gradient transition)

Cheval Blanc
Quito – DK – 60% Alpaca, 40% Wool – Plied

Ella Rae
Huenique – Super Bulky – 50% Acrylic, 50% Superwash Wool – Thick and thin – Multicolored
Huenique Sport – Sport – 50% Acrylic, 50% Superwash Wool – Single ply – Self-striping (gradient change)
Phoenix – Aran – 100% Mercerized Cotton – Crepe – Solid colors

Hayfield
Extravaganza – Super Bulky – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Multicolored

Katia
Baby Paint – Sport – 80% Acrylic, 20% Merino Superwash Wool – Plied – Self-striping (long)
Big Alabama – Bulky – 60% Cotton, 40% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors
Funny Rainbow – DK – 100% Cotton – Loosely plied – Gradient marl
Polar Star – Super Bulky – 95% Polyester, 5% Metallic – Faux fur – Solid colors with metallic
Silk Mohair – Lace – 70% Superkid Mohair, 30% Silk – Brushed bouclé
Stella – Lace – 80% Acrylic, 10% Alpaca, 10% Superwash Wool – Single ply – Self-striping (long gradient)

King Cole
Baby Pure DK – DK – 70% Acrylic, 30% Nylon – Plied – Semi-solid colors
Big Value Big – Jumbo – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors
Big Value Recycled Cotton Aran – Aran – 85% Cotton, 15% Synthetic – Loosely plied – Solid colors
Bounty Aran – Aran – 100% Acrylic – 2 ply – Solid colors
Merino Blend Aran – Aran – 100% Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors
Venice Chunky – Bulky – 54% Acrylic, 30% Wool, 9% Nylon, 7% Alpaca – Single ply – Marled
Verona Chunky – Bulky – 80% Acrylic, 10% Mohair, 10% Wool – Thick and thin – Multicolored
Zig Zag – Fingering – 75% Superwash Wool, 25% Nylon – Plied – Solid colors, Self-striping (fair-isle effect)

Lana Gatto
Class – Aran – 80% Merino Wool, 20% Angora – Plied with a soft haze

Lang Yarns
Yak – Aran – 50% Merino Wool, 50% Yak – Plied – Heathers, Marls

Lion Brand
Cobblestone – Aran – 100% Acrylic – S on S plied – Marled
Color Made Easy – Bulky – 100% Acrylic – S on S plied – Solid colors
Crayola™ Cake – Aran – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Self-striping
Cupcake (disc in 2021) – DK – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Self-striping
Cute As A Button – Super Bulky – 100% Polyester – Chenille – Self-striping, Multicolored
LB Collection Natural Wool – Super Bulky – 100% Wool – Single wrapped with thread – Undyed
LB Collection Organic Wool – Aran – 100% Wool – Plied – Solid colors
LB Collection Pure Wool – Worsted – 100% Wool – Single ply – Solid colors
LB Collection Wool Stainless Steel – Lace – 75% Wool, 25% Metallic – Metal core – Solid colors
London Kaye LKYC – Super Bulky – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors
Mandala Tweed – Worsted – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Self-striping marls
Neck's Best Thing – Sport – 90% Acrylic, 10% Superwash Wool – Single ply – Self-striping (long transition)
Shimmerie – Bulky – 99% Acrylic, 1% Metallic – Single ply – Gradient
Side Dish – Super Bulky – 100% Cotton – Plied – Solid colors
Spinella – Bulky – 100% Polyester – Faux fur – Self-striping
Sponge Cake – Bulky – 81% Cotton, 19% Nylon – Knitted tube – Solid colors
Terryspun – Bulky – 100% Polyester – Fleece style – Solid colors, Self-striping
Touch of Mohair – DK – 90% Acrylic, 10% Mohair – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors
Turnstyles – Bulky – 48% Acrylic, 34% Wool, 18% Nylon – Fuzzy chain – Multicolored
Tweedle Dee – DK – 75% Acrylic, 25% Cotton – Tweedy – Tweed colors
Vanna's Glamour – Sport – 96% Acrylic, 4% Metallic – Plied – Solid colors with metallic
Wrap Star – Sport – 70% Acrylic, 30% Wool – 2 ply – Gradient
Yarnado – Worsted – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Self-striping (long)
ZZ Twist – Worsted – 100% Acrylic – Z-plied – Solid colors

Malabrigo Yarn
Twist – Aran – 100% Merino Wool – Plied

Mirasol Yarn
Wiklla – Bulky – 50% Cotton, 50% Superfine Alpaca – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors

Moda Vera
Jansen – Bulky – 56% Acrylic, 30% Nylon, 7% Mohair, 7% Wool – Plied with a soft haze – Multicolored

Novita
Wool Cotton – DK – 55% Superwash Wool, 45% Cotton – Plied – Solid colors

Phildar
Phil Aviso – Aran – 60% Cotton, 40% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors
Phil Corde – Super Bulky – 100% Cotton – I-cord – Solid colors
Phil Céleste – DK – 70% Wool, 30% Silk – Plied – Solid colors

Plymouth Yarn
Baby Llama Glow Dye For Me – Worsted – 95% Llama, 5% Metallic – Plied with a soft haze – Undyed

Premier Yarns
Serenity Chunky Big Ombré – Super Bulky – 100% Acrylic – 2 ply – Self-striping (long gradient)

Schachenmayr Original
Nordic Dream – Bulky – 57% Viscose, 35% Superwash Wool, 8% Nylon – Fuzzy – Heathered colors

Shibui Knits
Fern – Sport – 100% Organic Cotton – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors

Sirdar
Snuggly Doodle DK – DK – 90% Acrylic, 10% Polyester – Tweedy – Tweed colors


If you'd like to get in touch, please send a mail to hello@yarnsub.com (you can simply reply to this mail) or find me on Ravelry and Instagram.

See you in March!

Wendy


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