Meduseld has added new colors to its high-sheen Romney fingering/Lace yarn. They are sold in pairs of 500 yards, 5.5 oz for $25.00. These vibrant colors called Royal, Full Moon and Titian are perfect for projects going into the fall. They are in Meduseld’s Store.
Meduseld’s lace-weight yarn is back in stock in our store!
This is the beautiful, high-sheen yarn that has been shown in projects on these pages and on Ravelry. This yarn is ideal for making lace shawls and scarves. It makes stunning knitted Estonian lace work, and yields a lace fabric with shine and drape.
It is also delightful made into crochet lace. Here it has been used in a pineapple pattern to create a shawl that is diaphanous and catches every breeze, despite being bordered with glass beads. This yarn would be ideal for making bridal shawls.
Romney yarn holds dye beautifully. These two-ply skeins are 250 yards and are $13.00 each. Each skein weighs approximately 2.9 ozFor bulk purchases, please contact Meduseld directly.
We have a free knitted shawl pattern, courtesy of my friend Kate!
Kate created this shawl from the Meduseld Romney yarn that we dyed together for the dyeing wool with food coloring article a few weeks ago. In these pictures, you’ll recognize the green and teal yarn that she dyed and subsequently swatched.
Here is a close-up of the border:
And this picture shows its boomerang shape and the subtle pattern in the dyed yarn as it moves across the shawl.
Here is Kate with the pattern:
Easy Boomerang shawl
This is an easy garter stitch shawl, knit sideways from one point to the long edge opposite. It can be very simple with no border, or fancy with a sideways knitted lace edge of your choice. If you continue the edging around the other side, you will only have to bind off a few stitches at the end. I’ve done two different versions, one with the Doris edging, the other with the Wave Lace edging, which I modified slightly to come to a point at the end. Both are from Heirloom Knitting by Shannon Miller.
Cast on three stitches (I used the long tail cast on), plus the number needed for the border. (For the Doris edging I cast on nine more stitches; for the Wave edging, eight.)
First row: k2, m1, k1, pm. Knit the first row of your chosen edging.
Second row: Knit the second row of the edging. Sm, k2tog, m1, k2.
Third row: k2, m1, k to marker. Sm, knit next edging row.
Fourth row: knit next edging row. Sm, k2tog, k to last two stitches, m1, k2.
Repeat the third and fourth row until your shawl is the size you like, or until you are running out of yarn. You can just keep going until you have just enough to bind off, or leave enough to continue the border around the other side.
I ended the shawl when I came to an inward point in the edging. I then knit one more row on the edging from the edge to the body of the shawl, and turned, knitting back down to the edge. I then continued the edging, knitting the last stitch of the edging together with the next stitch of the body, to finish off all the live stitches on the body. I then had to bind off only nine stitches at the end.
We have added two new dyed yarn pairs in our store! Both are Meduseld’s Dorset Down/Friesian blend in worsted weight. Each pair weighs 6.7 oz. and has approximately 340 yards.
The first color pair is called Caribbean Reef.
The second is called Brazil, named after one of the most beautiful countries on the planet. It has vibrant shades including the gold and green from their national flag.
We are pleased to announce the winners of Meduseld’s FIRST yarn give-away!
Two numbers were drawn at random from the posts to Meduseld’s Ravelry group.
The second place winner, for the Lanna Gato Alpaca, was #9 - apple380 – she posted that she’d make lace mitts.
The first prize winner for the skeins of Meduseld’s Dorset Down/Friesian, was #3 rosebob, who indicated she would make a lace cowl.
Congratulations to both winners!
Meduseld is delighted to release a new yarn. This is a two-ply worsted weight yarn of our Friesian and Dorset Down sheep.
We have profiled both of these breeds in a past blog article. The Dorset Downs, in particular, are known and bred for their very soft wool – wool soft enough to be used in apparel against the skin. These skeins won’t disappoint, as they have all the characteristic softness of these breeds. This yarn is springy, and feels like it had cotton blended with it.
We have a limited supply of these skeins. We are selling these 3.2-3.3 oz skeins very affordably for only $13.50 each. The color is natural white, and they would be excellent for dying.
We will be holding a give-away of one approximately 3 oz. skein on May 15, 2013 through our Ravelry group, Meduseld. Post on the forum’s give-away thread that you would like to enter the give-away, and let us know what you’d like to do with the yarn if you win it. Second runner-up will receive a 1 3/4 oz skein of Lana Gatto’s Alpaca in a dark natural grey. We will pick both winners at random on May 15.
Make sure to join the Give-Away!
This weekend we had another fun visit from my skilled knitter friend, Kate. She had a couple gorgeous WIPs with her, and I hope to convince her to let me take pictures of them. She was making stunning knitted lace with some silk lace yarn she had acquired at last year’s Shenandoah Valley Fiber Festival, and I can’t want to see what they look like when she’s finished.
While she was here, we thought it would be fun to dye some yarn. We took some skeins of romney worsted weight yarn and proceeded to the kitchen.
Using standard kitchen food colors, Kate decided to make her yarns in shades of blues and greens. I selected autumn colors. In order to begin, the yarn has to be soaked in water with white vinegar. We used about 6 cups water with two tablespoons white vinegar. The acid is what makes the colors bind to the natural wool fibers. Some dyers also use citric acid to achieve the same result. We allowed the yarn to soak in this solution for over 30 minutes.
While this was soaking, we started to prepare our dying solutions and the work area. To make the dyes, we used small dishes with 1/4 cup water. To these we added between 5- 12 drops of food coloring, depending on the intensity that we wanted with each color. This is fun to experiment with.
To protect the counter we placed clear plastic wrap in a large hollow rectangle on the counter. The rectangle has to be large enough to accommodate the dimensions of the yarn skein. It is hollow so that it can be wrapped up around the skein once it is dyed.
Here Kate is almost done applying the colors to her skeins. She has two skeins side by side so that each will have the same colorway. She has been applying the dyes with a small syringe. Please also note her gloves…this can be pretty messy business.
When finishes applying the dyes, Kate starts rolling the plastic around the skein from the outside it. You want to enclose the skein so that one side does not touch the other and have color leaking into other parts. You end up with a large hollow doughnut shape. Kate placed this in a Pyrex dish, and put it in the oven at 300 degrees for 30 minutes. The heat is necessary to “fix” the dyes. (You can also microwave the yarn in two minute increments until it is steaming hot and the dye it set.) After checking it, we decided another ten would help fix the colors.
After removing the yarn and allowing it to cool, Kate has washed the yarn in warm water and a mild soap. Wash until the water runs clear and be gentle so that the yarn does not felt. Here she is showing the completed, yet still wet, product.
The two skeins turned out beautifully! Some of the blue dyes separated and created spots of purple that add interest to the yarn.
Kate has already swatched it.
Here are the two skeins made in the autumn shades. These two are available in our store.
Thursday we had our sheep shorn, an annual event. Our front porch is covered with labeled bags of wool, each containing the name of the sheep that provided it. This year, we were able to have Rachel Summers of the Crowfoot Farm come out and shear and I have never been as happy before with the professionalism of the shearer!
Rachel and her husband, Kevin, run Crowfoot Farm, and I encourage you to go to the link. They raise quality GMO-free broiler chickens and free-range heritage turkeys. We had the privilege of being able to visit their farm and we were totally impressed with the way that they raise the animals. They raise several breeds of endangered heritage breeds and their blog is filled with information on their farm. The turkeys truly were free-range, and the chickens are in moveable pens so that they are in fresh forage areas. In addition, Rachel and Kevin go to great lengths to make certain that the feed is GMO-free. If you are in the area, its worth a trip in order to stock up your freezer.
Rachel learned her shearing skills from a great shearer, and since she is also a spinner, she understands the importance of ending up with a nice fleece. She left us with no second cuttings. Second cuttings come from where the shearer passes over the same area twice, and this leaves short pieces of wool that cannot be spun and that tend to leave little nubs or bumps if inadvertently spun into the yarn. The second cuttings have to be meticulously removed from the fleece, but in this case there are virtually none.
As a true professional, she cut the fleeces away from each sheep and it fell away in one large fleece. This makes for easy “skirting,” a process where we lay the fleece out and remove sections of the wool that are dirty, or that do not yield nice yarn, such as the legs and neck. By the time a fleece is skirted, only the best parts of it are ready for processing, whether it be for roving, yarn, batts, etc. The portions that are removed can be used for mulching garden beds or just thrown away. I have read that these pieces used to be used for insulation, but I seriously doubt that would pass building code these days.
As each fleece peels away from the sheep I judge it for the type of yarn that it will make. Factors that influence this decision include crimp, fiber length, sheen, and fineness. I have sheep whose fleeces I always designate for the same type of yarn, especially if I have found good results in the past. Royal, for example, is the source of those shiny skeins of Romney fingerling, and Clarabelle is the source of the buttery soft wool that I blend with Alpaca to make the brown bulky yarn that I can’t keep in stock.
In the last twenty-four hours we have had more baby lambs, including from our largest ewe, Henrietta. Here is a picture of one of our dorset down ewes with twins she had. This photo was taken just after she had them and they have still not been completely cleaned off by their mother.
I have also finished another shawl for our store, this time made out of Meduseld’s Romney Fingerling weight yarn. It is a reversible shawl with a beaded crocheted fringe. You can find it in our store here.
We are excited to add two new sport weight yarns to our store, both made of 100 percent Romney wool. They are both subtle blends of dyed wools and we are calling their colors Monet Winter Sunset and Monet Reflection.
Monet Winter Sunset is a blend of reds with hints of leaf green and gold subtley intertwined in the Romney wool sheen. Monet Reflection appears purple or lilac at first to the eye, but actually contains no purple fibers. It is a blend of reds and blues creating a tweeding effect that changes colors in different light, almost like a color-change sapphire. You can see these blends in the photos.
I have made some swatches of each. Sunset was knit with #3 (U.S.) knitting needles. Reflection was crocheted with an “F” crochet hook.
Both compliment each other well. Inspired by a sweater I have always liked in Rowan Magazine Number 50, I started knitting the two together in the rose pattern.
This is is as far as I have gotten, and the colors compliment each other nicely.
Each sport weight skein weighs just over 3.2 oz and is 200 yards long. They can be purchased for $15.00 each in Meduseld’s store.
The most recent FibreTown podcast showed two of Meduseld’s yarns. Emily Estrada, with FibreTown, will be offering a choice of either to the winner of a drawing she will have when she reaches 100 members on her Ravelry group. As of today her group called fiber town podcast has 91 members, so it won’t be long. Make sure you go and join up. It is a fun, active group where people share their FO’s (finished objects) and their WIP’s (works in progress) Emily has many skills that she shares and its a good way to learn about some of the yarns and rovings that are available.
One of the yarns Emily showed was Meduseld’s Worsted Romney yarn in 200 yard skeins. Here I have made some swatches that show how it knits and crochets. But first, a picture of its luxurious drape.
The first swatch was knit on U.S. size 7 knitting needles which would be 4.5 mm. This worsted yarn has approximately 12 wraps and the suggested needle size is between 7 and 9 – U.S. As you can see in the picture, it has remarkable sheen. This swatch has some stretch and has a lovely handle.
The next swatch was crocheted on a size G (4mm) hook, and created a nice tight fabric. The stitches are all double crochet. You could certainly use a larger hook, and projects made with this should work up quickly.
We will be listing this yarn on Ravelry.com for the members who want to be able to identify it with their projects. It is available to buy in our store here.