Do your knitting naturally with natural yarn
Ah, I love to knit and especially with natural yarn. It calms the chatter or skittishness in my mind as my hands get to work with the regular rhythm of the needles and the flow of the yarn. I feel incredibly satisfied when a project is finished and looks great. It is less fun when I make mistakes, but they are easy to fix (although often time consuming), since you can unravel the yarn, and start over.
One super advantage of natural yarns is that you do not need to worry about colour bleeding in a garment since there are no dyes. Come to see me in the south beach of eastern Toronto to touch and select your yarns.
Free knitting patterns
We have a selection of free patterns at our studio. Our Canadian yarn supplier, Estelle Designs and Sales, provides free downloadable patterns at http://estelleyarns.com/estelle-patterns.php. Their web site has posted a list of patterns by yarn supplier as well as regular new patterns. Estelle has a blog with announcements about their new products, as well as occasional contests to win yarn and a pattern. To sign up to their blog, go to the bottom left of the following page: https://estelleyarns.wordpress.com/about/
Knitting yarn return policies
Full skeins or balls of yarn are returnable for a full refund as long as the packaging is complete and undamaged, i.e. the wrappers around the skeins or balls are undamaged and the skein or ball has not been opened.
Items are to be returned in person within 30 days of purchase.
Caring for your knitted items
Wash your knitted items by hand, preferably in cold water. Do not wring. Lay flat to dry. Do not put them in the dryer or regular wash, or they will shrink a lot.
Wool, alpaca and cashmere break down from acidic soaps, so avoid regular detergents and do not bleach — you could damage your knitted items. Instead, use a castile soap or glycerine soap to wash your hand-made knitted items.
Opening special – free Estelle knitting needles with purchases of yarn over $100
Free knitting needles with one of our coupons, or purchase more than $100 of knitting yarn in a single purchase and receive a pair of Estelle Eco Bamboo knitting needles (value $10.00). These are available while supplies last. They are extra long 14-inch needles sizes 3.0 mm, 3.5 mm or 4 mm. Limit one set of needles per customer.
Estelle Eco Andean DK 100% Peruvian highland wool
This lightweight, easy to work with yarn comes in a large 100-gram skein. The medium sized sweater shown was knitted with Cream and required two and a half skeins. This yarn is 100% Peruvian highland wool, with 350 metres per skein. A 4 mm needle is recommended for this yarn, but I used 3 mm for this sweater and use 3.5 mm when making gloves. This soft yarn is also suitable for the weft part of weaving.
Want to experiment with this yarn? We have pre-wound 50-gram balls available.
Cascade’s Ecological Wool 100% natural Peruvian highland wool
The massive 250 gram skeins and the thicker size of this wool make it a workhorse, moving projects along quickly. This hat and mittens kept me warm last winter. I like my hats to be long and thick over my ears, so this extra-long hat was just what I needed! This wool is great for socks, it works well and wears well. Make your socks even stronger by twisting your yarn with stinging nettle.
This 100% natural Peruvian highland wool has 437 metres per skein. Needle size recommended is 5.5 to 6 mm but I used 5 mm for my hat and mittens shown here, and 5 mm for the socks to achieve a nice, tight knit. This sturdy yarn is also suitable for both the warp and the weft when weaving.
Would you like to experiment with this yarn? We have pre-wound 50-gram balls available.
Cascade’s Eco Duo, a two-colour blend of baby alpaca and merino wool
Eco Duo comes in a 100-gram skein. The baby alpaca makes this yarn so, so soft that it rivals cashmere for its softness at a substantially lower cost. Baby alpaca yarn is the first cut from the animal. Have you ever touched the first growth hair of a young child’s hair? It is also very soft; then after it has been cut once, it comes in stronger, thicker and harder.
Alpaca is a stretchy yarn, which means that if you purchased only 100% alpaca, any garment that is heavy or subject to pull could lose its shape. The merino portion of this yarn helps to prevent that, and strengthens the yarn, making it suitable for the weft when weaving. The yarn is an undyed, natural yarn with 180 metres per skein. It is made using two contrasting colours that are blended in a rhythm that gradually changes the yarn from one of the colours to the other. A 4.5 mm needle is recommended.
Cascade's Eco Highland Duo, with baby alpaca and merino wool
Like Eco Duo, the Eco Highland Duo is 70% undyed baby alpaca and 30% merino wool. It is ultra-soft to the touch. The first cut baby alpaca provides the softness, and the merino wool adds strength and stability to the yarn, suitable for the weft when weaving. A 5 mm needle is recommended for knitting.
Each 100 gm (3.5 oz skein) has 197 yards (180 m). We have six shades of Eco Highland Duo available, all shown in our photo.
Stinging Nettle: spirally content for your projects
I started using stinging nettle yarn because I was guided to. In spring 2018 I kept waking up with the word “nettle” in my head, so I drank more stinging nettle tea and put more nettle in my food. It is a great plant, high in iron (so a spinach substitute), and a search on the web comes up with other benefits of drinking the tea, such as natural allergy relief, and improving urinary health. But wearing it?
On a lark, I searched “100% nettle yarn,” and bought some from Ireland and Australia. I made both a pair of socks and long gloves for myself. My feet and legs stopped hurting when I went on synthetic flooring, and my hands and arms no longer hurt when handling cotton, synthetics, or when giving a treatment.
Why does this work for me? I do not know for sure, but believe it is because the stinging nettle is helping to support the electro-magnetic component of my human energy field. My human energy field could be vulnerable because of my fibromyalgia, my brain surgery, or because of my heredity. What I do know is combining the nettle with other yarns helps prevent my pain.
Try combining nettle with your other yarns if you are feeling tired, or just as an experiment. It certainly does seem to make my clothing more durable. For weaving it is suitable for the weft.
The stinging nettle yarn available here has been imported from Australia but originates from Nepal. The yarn is made from the tough fibrous stems of the plant, and feels like a tough, thin, spiral string. I find it to be comfortably wearable when combined with other yarns.
Make an appointment to feel the difference of adding stinging nettle to your projects by contacting email@example.com.
Lang's Cashmere Premium
Lang states that it uses only premium quality cashmere in this yarn. Cashmere is ultra light, breathable, soft and yet warm. This photo shows a cashmere ankle sock, and a headband and fingerless gloves made with nettle and cashmere, giving a lovely marbled effect while strengthening the yarn.
There is 115 meters in a ball of 25 g, and a 3.5 to 4 mm needle is recommended. I used 3 mm for the ankle sock and 3.5 mm for the headband and gloves.
White 100% Merino from Legacy Lanes
Legacy Lanes Fibre Mill in New Brunswick has produced these cones of 100% merino wool for us for use in knitting and weaving. Other shades of 100% merino are difficult to obtain, but white is accessible, although I had to wait a few months for these. It is a strong, soft, hypo-allergenic yarn with excellent strength since it is a three-strand yarn.
Come and wind what you need and pay by the gram. We have two thicknesses available, 800 yards per pound (a mid weight yarn) and 1300 yards per pound (a light weight yarn).