Monday, August 26, 2013

Latest Acquisitions - Awesome Yarn and Needles!

I've had a few projects planned that needed specific colors or types of yarn to complete. I've been putting off finding them, but as the time is fast approaching for at least one project deadline, I decided to take the plunge and buy some yarn. Big sacrifice, I know lol. Since I was making an online order already, I had to look at the clearance yarn too, right? These are the latest additions to my stash!
This first set came from WEBS (yarn.com). I have always looked around on their site and longed for their beautiful yarns, but never actually made an order til now. I am really happy with them :) I received the yarn within just a few days and their customer service was great - I highly recommend trying them out. Even better than all that were their prices. When looking through their clearance yarns I came across a few I just had to snag.

  • The purple and beige yarns are SMC Northern Worsted with Wool. These are 100g balls that are 75% acrylic and 25% wool. I grabbed 2 skeins in lilac (for an upcoming project) and 2 skeins in Taupe for only $2.79 each. The taupe was a bit of a gamble - I was hoping it was more of a skin color that I could make a baby doll with. It's a little darker than I wanted, but it will still work. 
  • The 2 coral skeins are Debbie Bliss Cashmerino. They are 50 gram balls of a merino wool and cashmere blend and they were $4.79 each because this is a discontinued color. I've always wanted to try this stuff out and I do love coral right now, so it was just meant to be. This stuff is so wonderfully soft! I'm not 100% sure if I will make a scarf or a hat or something, but I'm leaning toward the scarf so it's nice and soft on my neck and face. 
  • The last thing I have in this photo is a nice pile of Cascade Sierra. I noticed that the Sierra was super on sale because it has been discontinued - it must have happened recently because WEBS still has a ton of colors left. I knew one of the sweaters I liked from Andi Satterlund recommended using this yarn, so I looked through her patterns only to find out it is the Miette which has been on my to-make list pretty much since I learned to knit. I very rarely use the recommended yarn with the pattern because it's generally very expensive and I just don't have the funds, but in this case it is only $5.49 per hank! That's almost half price which is a huge discount for such a quality yarn. Since it was so marked down, I was able to get 5 skeins (enough to make my own Miette) in the Water Lily colorway. I am seriously so excited about the minty color of this yarn. It was one of those colors that looked like it might have been a bit more blue, but I was hoping for a true mint green and that's exactly what I got. This is 80% pima cotton and 20% wool and I'm looking forward to knitting with it. My only other experience with cotton has been in crocheting and I wasn't a big fan then, but people really seem to love it in knitting so hopefully this will come out fun and pretty. Also since it's cotton it should be a little cooler to wear than the wool, meaning I would get more wear out of it here in Florida.
This next order contains the real reason (a.k.a. justification) for shopping online at all. I'm making a cute baby hat and the recipient specifically requested it be in the same colors as the pattern example photo, which meant needed Cascade 220 Superwash in Strawberry Pink and Salmon to make it. I looked on WEBS for this first, but they didn't have these colorways and I was worried my monitor wasn't calibrated correctly and I would pick the wrong colors if they were under different names. So, I turned to the next online yarn shop I could think of: Jimmy Bean's Wool. This is my first time ordering through this site as well and I am again extremely pleased. The order came in without a hitch and it only took a couple of days to arrive - how great is that?! They had both colors I needed and then I had to glance through their clearance yarn :) Here is what I got:
  • The two pink skeins are Cascade 220 Superwash in Salmon (the lighter color) and Strawberry Pink. These are just lovely as always - I really love this yarn, for real. I just want to squish the skeins all the time :)
  • The other 4 skeins are all Stitch Nation's Bamboo Ewe. This whole line has been discontinued so there is a very limited amount of colors left and Jimmy Bean's is the only online source you can still get any from. I've never worked with it, but I felt it back when Hobby Lobby carried it and I knew it was nice and soft. The red is called Geranium and the blue is Periwinkle and they cost $3.43 each. These are 100g skeins that are 55% bamboo viscose and 45% wool. I'm not completely sure what I want to make with them, but I'm excited to entertain ideas!
I've been on a toy/baby knitting roll lately. This means I've been using a lot of patterns that call for smaller double pointed needles. I have quite a few sets of metal dpns that my friend Tara got at a yard sale, but lately the holes in my collection have been showing themselves. For example, the Itty-Bitty Giraffe was knit on size 7 dpns - 3 that were 7" long and 1 that was 10" long because I didn't have a full set of 4 that were the same length. That doesn't sound like too big a deal, but if you've ever tried this you will understand how annoying it is. It made the toy take longer a lot than it would have otherwise. I've been eyeing these Stitchberry needle sets on Amazon for a few months now and finally decided it was time to buy some. Stitchberry makes bamboo knitting needles and they actually make all kinds - dpns, straight and circular. They sell their needles in complete sets, as in all sizes come together for one price. 
I have really grown to love the shorter needles for all the small toy pieces I've been making, so I opted for the 6" set of dpns and it was only $19.99 for 15 sets of 5 needles each! That's an incredible price considering that Clover Takumi bamboo needles sell for $6 and up for each individual set! I read the reviews thoroughly before buying these because the price makes them seem a little too good to be true. The reviews were mixed, but most of the average ones said they were great for the money but not always so sharp. The best reviews also included that you could just sand them down at the tip to make them sharper and then rub them with wax paper - done and done! I'm really happy with my set. I noticed a few needles that had some bumpy spots, but seriously a few swipes with a fine grade sand paper and you would never know they weren't always perfect. I used these to make my latest toy (to be revealed tomorrow!) and I am really happy :) Now I have a complete set of 6" dpns for any and all my toy making adventures!

So, thanks for letting me brag about my latest buys :) If you want to grab any of these deals yourself, just follow the links in my post and look around. I can't wait to make beautiful items with all these fantastic yarns - here's hoping I can do them justice!

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