Thursday, March 3

On naming socks and finding great yarn

A few weeks ago, when I visited the yarn shop to buy some alpaca yarn for a second Canopy shawl, I strolled through all the other yarns they offered. Where I live in Belgium, there isn't a lot of 'cool and squishy' yarn to find in yarn shops. In this yarn shop it's either the King Cole Alpaca DK that was 100% wool or ou'll find wool-acrylic blends.

That's a thing that has been frustrating me for a while now. I come to a yarn shop, mostly it's a shop where they sell yarn, aluminium knittng needles, some fabrics, buttons, sewing supplies, and other haberdasheries, and I see shelves full of colorful yarn but when I come closer it's mostly these brands: Regia, Schachenmayr, Annell. They aren't bad yarns, but if you want to knit something other than socks and want pure wool or wool blends, there's nothing there. So whenever I want to buy some yarn like say Malabrigo, Cascade, Madeline Tosh, Quince and Co., Brooklyn Tweed, ... I have to drive to another province (okay, that's not so bad, but they usually only have one of the brands that I just named) or order it online. Am I complaining too much? I think so! But yeah, it would be nice to just enter a yarn shop and feel all the quality brand yarns before I buy them, in stead of browsing Ravelry project photos of certain colorways taken in different light for hours! For instance, if I want to knit something big like a sweater or cardigan, it's going to cost me some money, a lot of time and I want it to be the perfect color and non itchy yarn, or else I won't wear it eventually. It costs me a lot to order a lot of skeins (plus shipping!) for such a project. That's why I mostly knit socks I guess...or the occasional shawl.

So in this yarn shop, I found King Cole DK, 100% pure alpaca and I was thrilled! I could touch it! ;-) Even though I knew, the rest of the massive yarn pile in the shop isn't what I was looking for, I still searched for 100% wool yarns. Anyway, I didn't find it, but in the Regia section I found this Extra Twist Merino sock yarn that I'd never seen before. I couldn't resist (hey, I didn't have blue socks at the moment yet, so that argument was pretty crucial) and grabbed two skeins and another white-beige Regia sock yarn with it, because, you know, that's always a good color for cuffs, toes and heels in my opinion.

My fingers were itching to knit the Hermione's Everyday Socks again, so that's the pattern I used and I'm planning to knit pair of socks with this blue yarn but instead of a white-beige cuff and toe I want them to be dark blue. So these socks are named Polar Day, and those with the dark blue toes and cuffs will be named Polar Night.

Ravelry notes can be found here.


  1. Ahhh, I feel your pain! I currently live only a 30-minute tram-ride from Julija's Shop, but we're moving to a smaller town in a month... So finding the "good stuff" won't be as easy as it used to be!

    I sometimes order sock yarn online (mostly at Wolhalla, a Dutch webshop with a huge range of sock yarn)... but only because I limit my budget for sock yarn to 10 euros per skein. When buying the more expensive, good stuff, I find it difficult to order online because you have to feel the yarn and see the colour in real life!

    Anyways, your socks turned out really lovely! I love the white cuff and toe.

  2. It makes me sad that you have to travel so far for wool yarns. I am lucky to have many local yarn stores nearby, but as I really love Indie dyers I often have to search online.

    Your Hermoine's are fantastic!!

  3. Your socks turned out so well. That must be so frustrating to not be able to see a variety of good yarns at a local yarn shop. I always like to see and touch what skeins I am buying...sometimes they look so different online.

  4. I love the contrasting heels and toes :) :)

  5. I love your beautiful space here and wonder how I've never come across it before - I'll be back :-)


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