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March '15 Yarn & Spinning Box Reveal

The Company

This month we partnered with a fabulous hand painter operating under the newly formed brand Love Spun.

In my opinion there are two ways yarn can be deemed luxurious: fiber content and dye process.

Dyeing in “pots and lots” can be great from a production perspective, and we have a bunch of dyers that are amazing utilizing this method.

There are very few dyers who will take the plunge and invest in a laborious dye process in addition to the expense of luxury fibers. But why can’t we have both? Well, we can, but the resulting yarn is going to be an investment, and there’s going to have to be a little trade off. With Love Spun, half skeins are offered in order to keep retail prices on par with similar yarns on the market: think Koigu or Lotus’s hand painted mink - that’s the category Love Spun belongs within, and we love the end results!

The Yarn

Love Spun offers a range of wools and blends, but we decided to hone in on exotics this month.

Our first featured blend is an 80/20 superfine merino and baby camel in a fingering weight. The skeins pack a punch at a solid 250m worth of yarn.

Merino is marketed well enough - I think we all understand how super awesome, soft, and versatile it can be. Baby camel, however, is relatively unknown, so let’s discuss it a little more in depth.

Let’s stress the difference between camel and baby camel.

Camel fiber is courser and more readily available as it sheds from adults. Generally, it is a darker color (dark fawn to brown) so it needs to be bleached in order to be utilized in yarn if it’s being matched with a wool such as merino.

Baby camel, however, is much more rare and soft. The first shedding of a camel’s undercoat is gathered by herders as a naturally falls to the ground (similar to cashmere goats). Baby camel fiber only happens once in a camel’s lifetime, and is not only prized because it ranges from about 14-16 microns (again, similar to cashmere), but because it is a natural white/light fawn color, which also means less (if any) processing.

Baby camel is a big deal. A really big deal.

Our second yarn blend was a 50/50 worsted weight in superfine merino and baby alpaca. Again, the “baby” part of the fiber blend is important here. As alpacas age, their fiber grows in at a thicker diameter, so the younger the alpaca, the finer the fiber. The baby alpaca fiber used in this blend is equal to the superfine merino used - it’s about 18-19 microns.

The Dye Job

Love Spun’s dyeing process is not only unique because their fibers are hand painted. They also only handpaint in cakes, and reskein the yarn once it has dried. This allows for unique, organic color blending and variation. Accordingly, every single skein is its own individual masterpiece.

We featured a range of colors this month (13 total), out of the 40 possible options Love Spun creates. Here are the colors we selected:

The Upgrades & Pattern

This month there were two featured platinum upgrades, randomly placed in Fiberista’s boxes.

First, we placed 25 copies of a brand new, hot-off-the-presses publication we felt would a) work well with the handpainted yarn we featured this month and b) we loved.

Wrapped in Color: 30 Shawls to Knit in Koigu Handpainted Yarns
By Koigu Wool Designs, Maie Landra, Taiu Landra

Wrapped In Color features various shawl and accessory patterns designed with Koigu, ranging from light weight to chunky weight yarns.

Our pattern this month is one from the book, “Patch Of Berries”, and works with just one skein of the fingering weight or two skeins of the worsted weight. If you’d like a larger shawlette, simply knit up all the yarn in your boxes:

"Patch Of Berries" was released via email to members. If you haven't yet received the pattern, please send us an email and we'll get it out to you right away!

If you were super, duper lucky this month you also received a set of Addi Art Crystal knitting needles as a super platinum upgrade:

US 15 needles on a 32” cable with Swarovski crystals inside the barrels? Talk about knitting bling!

Your swag item this month was your Fiberista Club discount card. Now, it’s going to be so much more than a discount card!

The code is personalized towards all your individual shop purchases, and will allow us to send you reward coupons based on how much you cumulatively spend in the shop.

We’ll release more information about it shortly.

A shop update will be complete featuring all 40 colors of Love Spun, in addition to some of their other yarn bases, next week.

We’re also beginning to expand our current offerings, starting with Dream In Color. We will be carrying four of their bases and fifteen new colors We will also list their brand new mini skeins to the shop as soon as the come in, too. This should be in about 4-6 weeks, just as we’re getting back from our trade shows.

 

The Spinning Club Box

I have to admit, I made a pretty unorthodox decision about March that’s going to require some feedback …

Most of the spinning fiber we have released so far has been custom dyed for us. I do this so it’s exclusive, but also because it’s the best way for me to get you fiber you haven’t seen (and also I’m a control freak). This month and last month (70/30 merino/yak) also featured our first custom blends.

Generally, we get the fiber in, I discuss colors with the dyers, we ship out the naked fiber, and we get it back in pretty 200g-300g segments that have been dyed beautifully.

Like most spinners, I’ve touched a lot of fiber. When I cracked open the box on this month’s order and started to play around with it, I just couldn’t send it off to be dyed. It was so enchanting and so soft, and I knew the integrity of the fiber would be compromised going through any harsh (and that’s what dyeing is - it’s harsh) process.

So, I decided to keep it naked AND ship tons of it -well, 400g of it to each member.

What’s the blend? 50/50 superfine merino and baby camel!

It’s such a gorgeous light fawn/white blend!

April's Mood Boards

For the first time, we're releasing two mood boards per color family so we can adequately represent the fabulous yarn and fiber we will be featuring next month!

As in previous months, Fiberistas have the opportunity to double down on April's box. 

Box upgrades are already discounted and are members-only, so there's no additional discount on club box upgrades.

If you'd like to adjust your color preferences for this month, you can do so by logging into your account and changing  your color family selection: