I'm linking up today with Jennifer of Thistlebear for her
Winter Project Link Party. Thank you for hosting Jennifer!
Late in the fall I was approached by Yarn Canada and asked to do a review of one of the many yarns they carry, Noro Kureyon Yarn. This yarn is 100% wool, hand-dyed, worsted weight wool. The colourways are all variegated, or self-striping. I was given three balls of yarn of my choice in exchange for this review. These are the three I chose, but you can see all the choices available through the link.
|top to bottom: #263 #332 #368|
I did a little research on the Noro yarns, and found this scarf project on Jared Flood's site. Although the yarn he used was the Noro Silk Garden yarns, I thought the same effect would easily be achieved using the bulkier Noro Kureyon yarn that was offered to me. What you're doing in making this scarf is manually striping the variegated yarn. I actually need four balls of yarn to achieve this, and will be ordering a fourth ball now that I've got started on it, but right now I'm working with two balls of yarn.
The most difficult part of the project is choosing the yarn! There are so many beautiful colourways to choose from, but I wanted to choose two green/blue yarns and then something that would accent it nicely. All the colours that come up in each ball of yarn are listed on the ordering page which is very helpful. It did take me a while to finally come up with my choices, but they all look nice together.
When the box of yarns arrived, I was fascinated by the rich colours within each ball of yarn. Lovely earthy tones in vibrant hues. Gorgeous! I rewound all the skeins into balls to start the project, and just in rewinding them I was able to see the lovely kaleidescope of colours within each ball. There are a lot of colours that run through each ball! And no two colours are repeated. As you are knitting, you are exposed to the colour changes very quickly, but they change so subtly, that it's as if you're painting and blending those colours yourself. The manual striping technique doubles the pleasure with two balls of yarn being used at the same time.
Now this yarn is 100% wool, and it has that lovely texture of pure wool that you don't get from synthetic yarns. I prefer working with natural fibres as they feel so nice on the hands. There is no "squeaking" of the yarn on the needles! The last two scarves I knit were made from acrylic and that squeakiness of the acrylic yarn on the needles is like nails run down a chalkboard for me. ugh! This Noro yarn is lovely to work with, although it does tend to twist itself together which causes it to tangle as you knit. Something to keep on top of continuously or you end up with a tangled mess.
I'm knitting this in 1 x 1 ribbing (knit 1, purl 1), and it's working up really nicely like that. It's lying completely flat, which is great to show off the colours. My goal was to highlight the colours and texture of the yarn more than an intricate pattern. I'm using No. 8 needles, and have made the scarf about 8 inches wide, but I'm not sure I have enough yarn to make it a good length.
There is a rustic nature to this yarn as well. You can see the difference in the stitches as the yarn goes from skinny to chunky in several spots. This gives a wonderful texture throughout the finished piece with little knubby bits scattered across the finished work.
There was one thing I did not like. In each of the two balls of yarn I'm working with at the moment, there was a knot joining two strands of yarn together. I was aware of one of the knots and saw it coming off the ball. Before I started on the next row, I moved the yarn past the knot before I started knitting again. The second knot I did not see and it showed up near the end of the row I was knitting. I had to rip back to the beginning of that row so that the knot wouldn't be in the finished work. I was surprised that for such nice (and expensive) yarn, there were knots. Not only that, but as I've watched the colours change so subtly, suddenly there is a sharp change to the colouring as the knots connected two completely different colours. One knot connected a dark purple and black which was alright. The second knot connected a greenish yellow to brilliant orange. This threw off the delicate shading which disappointed me. I had considered taking out the orange completely, but have left it in for now. I think in the end it will blend in alright as the scarf lengthens and more colours are thrown into the mix.
As I was knitting this in the sunshine, I couldn't help but admire the colours emerging from the balls, and also emerging into the knitted garment. I'm really enjoying knitting up this scarf. The final question is "would I use this yarn again". The answer is "Yes!". Although the skeins are expensive for my own budget ($9.95 Cdn for a 50g/100m ball of yarn), it's sometimes nice to splurge for a small project, and I know I'll be happy with this scarf when it's complete. I also thought this yarn would make a gorgeous tea cozy, and might consider making one in the future.
Thanks for stopping by today!