YarnSub Newsletter

November 2021

Newly-published books

[Book: 'The Shetland Trader: Heritage' by Gudrun Johnston]

I like the story behind the knitwear in Gudrun Johnston's The Shetland Trader: Heritage almost as much as I like the designs themselves. The patterns are based on clothes that were originally designed by Gudrun's mother, Patricia Johnston, for her family. The designs have a 1970s vibe, but just the good bits—think tunics and billowing sleeves rather than flares and wide collars.

The surprising thing is that Patricia couldn't actually knit herself. She didn't need to, because she was lucky enough to be living in Shetland so there were plenty of skilled knitters around who could turn her designs into reality. When other people started asking how they could get hold of the knitwear for themselves, she realised she had an opportunity to start her own made-to-order business. The business was successful right up until the Johnston family left Shetland a few years later.

I find it inspiring to think how Patricia Johnston's entrepreneurship must have brought benefits to so many local knitters, not to mention all the customers who got access to fabulous knitwear! Now, thanks to Patricia's daughter, Gudrun, we have access to it too.

Tunic, dresses and sweater from The Shetland Trader: Heritage, by Gudrun Johnston

Designs from The Shetland Trader: Heritage, by Gudrun Johnston

[Book: 'High Desert' by WeCrochet]

As wonderful as crochet is for projects like blankets and toys, I've not previously wanted to use it for garments. Crochet garments often look a bit solid and unyielding to me. So I was surprised how much I liked "Hinton", the cover pattern on High Desert. I'm not sure what's different about it to other crochet designs that I've seen, but it looks cosy and easy to wear, like I could throw it on over jeans and feel comfortable for the day. The book contains patterns for cowls, bags, hats and fingerless gloves, just in case you're still not ready to put a crochet sweater on your to-make list!

Cowl, hat and clutch bag from High Desert by WeCrochet

Designs from High Desert, by WeCrochet / Knit Picks

[Book: 'Knit Like A Latvian: Accessories' by Ieva Ozolina]

An unusual technique used in Knit Like A Latvian: Accessories is the Latvian braid. It gives the effect of a two-color line of chevrons and is used in the book as decoration for mitten cuffs, hat brims and shawl edges.

I think it looks pretty. One thing that bothers me is that the mittens in the book have the chevrons pointing in the same direction on both hands. I'd prefer them to be mirror images of each other. Luckily it's easy to make the chevrons point in the other direction. In case you wanted to know how, I've explained it in more detail below.

I think Latvian braid is well worth trying. And since it's often easier to learn a new technique on something small, a pattern from Knit Like A Latvian: Accessories might be just the ticket.

Fingerless mittens, head band and floral shawl from Knit Like A Latvian: Accessories

Designs from Knit Like A Latvian: Accessories, by Ieva Ozolina

See all newly published books >

Latvian braid technique

Here's my explanation for how to point the chevrons in either direction. The instructions for making Latvian braid are slightly different depending on whether you're knitting back-and-forth or in the round. I'm giving instructions for working in the round, as that's what's used in Knit Like A Latvian: Accessories.

The first step is to knit a setup round in two colors, alternating colors for the entire round.

Left-pointing chevrons

The next round creates the lower half of the chevron and is worked in purl. Follow the color pattern as set in the previous round, stranding the non-working yarn at the front of the work. Usually with stranded knitting, you would keep one color over and one color under when changing colors, to avoid tangles. However, on this round, always take the new color over the old color, as shown below.

New color taken over old before working next stitch

To complete the chevron, work another round in purl, but this time taking the new color under the old color.

New color taken under old before working next stitch

Right-pointing chevrons

As I mentioned earlier, in the book the braid is always worked exactly as explained above, resulting in left-pointing chevrons. However, it's easy to make the chevrons point in the other direction— just take the new color under the old color on the first round of purl and over for the second round.

Two bands of Latvian braid, pointing right and left

New and discontinued yarns

New yarn: Debbie Bliss Nell

New yarn: Debbie Bliss Nell – Image © LoveCrafts

New

ABC Yarn
Cute and Cuddly – Bulky – 100% Polyester – Faux fur – Solid colors

Athena
Select Chunky – Bulky – 100% Acrylic – Plied – Solid colors

Aunt Lydia's
Baby Shower Crochet Thread Size 3 – Thread – 100% Cotton – Thread - size 3 – Solid colors

Bendigo Woollen Mills
Rustic 4-ply – Fingering – 100% Wool – Plied – Solid colors, Heathers

Bernat
Blanket Extra Thick – Jumbo – 100% Polyester – Chenille – Solid colors, Tonal colors
Forever Fleece – Super Bulky – 100% Polyester – Fleecy single – Solid colors, Semi-solid colors
Sheepy – Super Bulky – 100% Nylon – Fleece style – Solid colors

Biches & Bûches
Le Lambswool – Sport – 100% Wool – Plied (woolen-spun) – Solid colors, Heathers

Cascade Yarns
BFL – DK – 100% Blue Faced Leicester Wool – Plied – Solid colors
Cascade 220 Superwash Fingering – Fingering – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors
ReFine – Fingering – 75% Merino Superwash Wool, 20% Nylon, 5% Viscose – Plied (woolen-spun) – Solid colors, Heathers
ReVive – Aran – 100% Wool – Plied – Solid colors

Debbie Bliss
Nell – Bulky – 78% Mohair, 13% Merino Wool, 9% Nylon – Fuzzy – Solid colors

Elements
Everyday Wool Chunky – Bulky – 50% Acrylic, 50% Superwash Wool – S on S plied – Solid colors

Ella Rae
Kid Sparkle – Lace – 38% Acrylic, 31% Nylon, 27% Mohair, 4% Metallic – Brushed bouclé – Solid colors with metallic

ITO
Kosho – Lace – 90% Merino Wool, 10% Cashmere – Plied (woolen-spun) – Solid colors

JaggerSpun
Berwick Bulky – Bulky – 100% Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors, Heathers

Jody Long
Alpamayo – Worsted – 50% Baby Alpaca, 50% Organic Cotton – S on S plied – Solid colors
Andeamo Lite – Aran – 85% Highland Wool, 15% Superfine Alpaca – 2 ply – Solid colors

Juniper Moon Farm
Bluefaced Leicester – Worsted – 100% Blue Faced Leicester Superwash Wool – 2 ply – Solid colors, Heathers

Kate Davies Designs
Ooskit – DK – 100% Wool – Plied – Solid colors, heathers, undyed

Kelbourne Woolens
Germantown Bulky – Super Bulky – 100% Wool – Plied – Solid colors

KnitCircus
Tremendous – Bulky – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Plied – Tonal colors, Multicolored, Gradient, Self-Striping, Speckled

Kremke Soul Wool
Vegan Cashmere (Pure Cotton) – Aran – 100% Cotton – Fuzzy chain – Solid colors

Lamana
Como Grande – Heavy Worsted – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors, Heathered colors
Verona – Light Fingering – 50% Merino Wool, 30% Silk, 20% Cashmere – Plied – Solid colors, Heathered colors

Lammy Yarns
Soft Sensation – Lace – 76% Acrylic, 24% Polyester – Brushed bouclé – Solid colors

Lily Kate Makes
Axis – Aran – 90% Merino Wool, 10% Alpaca – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors, Heathers

Marks & Kattens
Fiesta – Fingering – 80% Lurex, 20% Nylon – Metallic chainette – Metallic

Noro
Madara – Heavy Worsted – 60% Wool, 30% Silk, 10% Alpaca – Tweedy – Tweedy colors
Viola – Bulky – 100% Wool – Single ply – Self-striping (gradient transition)

Purl Soho
Plenty – Heavy Worsted – 100% Merino Wool – S on S plied – Solid colors

Qing Fibre
Dashing Sassy – Fingering – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Single ply – Solid colors, Tonal colors, Multicolored, Speckles

Rauma
Vandre – DK – 100% Superwash Wool – 2 ply – Solid colors

Regia
Premium Merino Yak Color – Fingering – 58% Merino Superwash Wool, 28% Nylon, 14% Yak – Plied – Self-striping

Stacy Charles Fine Yarns
Bianca – Heavy Worsted – 100% Wool – Fuzzy chain – Semi-solid colors
Megan – Aran – 50% Merino Wool, 50% Polyester – Fiber-filled net – Semi-solid colors

Svarta Fåret
Tencel Blow – Worsted – 58% Tencel / Lyocell, 42% Alpaca – Fiber-filled net – Semi-solid colors

Valley Yarns
Ashfield – Worsted – 67% Merino Wool, 33% Bamboo Viscose – S on S plied – Solid colors

Yarn Bee
Authentic Hand-Dyed Luxe – Fingering – 99% Merino Superwash Wool, 1% Metallic – Plied – Multicolored with metallic

Discontinued

Arnall-Culliford Knitwear
Something to Knit With 4-ply – Fingering – 70% Highland Wool, 30% Superfine Alpaca – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors
Something to Knit With Aran – Aran – 70% Highland Wool, 30% Superfine Alpaca – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors

Borgo de'Pazzi
Naturalia Alpaca – Jumbo – 70% Wool, 30% Alpaca – Single wrapped with thread – Undyed

Ella Rae
Lace Merino – Fingering – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Tightly plied – Solid colors, Multicolored, Tonals
Phoenix DK – DK – 100% Mercerized Cotton – S on S plied – Solid colors
Rustic Lace – Light Fingering – 75% Superwash Wool, 25% Silk – Tweedy – Semi-solid
Starz – Fingering – 100% Metallic – Metallic chainette – Metallic colors

Erika Knight
Fur Wool – Super Bulky – 97% Wool, 3% Nylon – Faux fur – Solid colors

Hayfield
Chunky With Wool – Bulky – 80% Acrylic, 20% Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors

James C. Brett
Misty DK – DK – 94% Acrylic, 6% Viscose – Plied and eyelash fibers – Tweed colors

K&C (from Joann)
Angel Hair – Bulky – 50% Acrylic, 28% Nylon, 22% Wool – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors, Multicolored

Katia
Degradé – DK – 100% Cotton – S on S plied

Lana Grossa
Tre Seta – Worsted – 40% Merino Superwash Wool, 35% Silk, 20% Baby Alpaca, 5% Viscose – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors

Lang Yarns
Amantani – Super Bulky – 100% Baby Alpaca – Chained – Solid colors
Ayumi – Light Fingering – 100% Cotton – Chained – Gradient
Super Soxx Alpaca – Fingering – 55% Superwash Wool, 25% Nylon, 20% Alpaca – Plied – Self-striping (fair-isle effect)
Yak Tweed – Aran – 50% Merino Superwash Wool, 50% Yak – Tweedy – Tweed colors

Lion Brand
LB Collection Hand-Dyed Superwash Merino – Worsted – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – S on S plied – Multicolord

Madelinetosh
DK Twist – DK – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Tightly plied – Tonal colors, Multicolored

Novita
Baby Wool – DK – 100% Merino Superwash Wool – Plied – Solid colors

Patons (Australia)
Jet 8-ply – DK – 70% Wool, 30% Alpaca – Plied with a soft haze – Solid colors
Songbird – DK – 50% Acrylic, 50% Mohair – Fuzzy – Multicolored
Super Quick – Super Bulky – 70% Acrylic, 30% Merino Wool – Plied – Solid colors

Plymouth Yarn
Tuscan Aire – Bulky – 90% Merino Wool, 10% Nylon – Fuzzy chain – Heathered colors

Sirdar
Elemental – Super Bulky – 72% Acrylic, 15% Wool, 9% Nylon, 3% Alpaca, 1% Metallic – Thick and thin – Marled with metallic thread

Stylecraft
Pearls – Bulky – 100% Polyester – Pompom – Solid colors

Universal Yarn
Bamboo Bloom – Bulky – 48% Bamboo Viscose, 44% Wool, 8% Acrylic – Thick and thin – Semi-solid colors, Multicolored
Classic Shades – Aran – 70% Acrylic, 30% Superwash Wool – Single ply – Self-striping marls (gradient change)
Classic Shades Sequins Lite – DK – 74% Acrylic, 22% Superwash Wool, 4% Polyester – Sequinned – Self-striping (gradient transition)

Valley Yarns
Conway – DK – 60% Cotton, 40% Acrylic – S on S plied – Solid colors

Willow and Lark
Plume – Lace – 70% Mohair, 30% Silk – Brushed bouclé – Semi-solid colors


Just so you know, I was sent a copy of High Desert for review.

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 Instagram.

See you in December!

Wendy


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