Well, I have some yarn reviews from my test knitters to share with you! One here, and one on Teyani's blog. They are both quite thorough in nature and photos. So check out the review below and then surf on over to Teyani's blog to read her review. Neither test knitter was aware of what company/indie dyer produced the yarn when they knit it, and since I'm still deciding on whether or not I'm going to carry the yarn that Teyani reviewed, I'm not going to reveal to you who dyed it.
Below is Vickie's great review of the yarn I sent her. I have to say that she took many nice pictures, but I'm posting only a few here. The yarn she knit was Creatively Dyed in a merino yarn base. While I do carry Dianne's Creatively Dyed Merino, I don't carry the yarn base that Vickie reviewed- I carry a different 100% merino yarn base that I like very much. So keep in mind when reading the below review that it's representative of the hand dyeing, but not so much the yarn base, as I carry a different one.
On a side note, I'm quite pleased to hear that Vickie noticed no pooling or striping- mostly b/c I personally prefer a random distribution of color. Of course, some of you may prefer pooling- feel free to tell me in the comments below what you think of the Creatively Dyed yarn you've bought from me so far!
The yarn looked very nice in the skein. I found two knots and around those knots the yarn appeared to have been overstretched or pulled too tightly. I cut the stretched parts out (maybe 20 feet altogether) and still have plenty for a pair of socks. The only problem I had winding the yarn is that the skein was a tad too big for my swift. I have a standard size umbrella swift (the metal and blue plastic one) and the skein barely stayed on the swift fully extended. It wasn't much of a problem until the end of the skein, at which point it fell off the swift into a pile on the table. Grrr.
The yarn was nice to work with, very slippery but not splitty at all. I switched from my usual metal needles to wooden ones so that I could better control it. The yarn did not catch at all during knitting. It seemed to be consistently spun, except for the two placed mentioned above. Before washing, the sock had a stringy feel to it, but after washing it was very soft. The yarn developed a slight fuzz-halo after washing that enhanced its appearance. There is not a lot of stitch definition with this yarn.
The color distributed very nicely, with no pooling at all. There is also no striping to speak of. The color is not deeply saturated in placed, giving the fabric a heathered look which is quite nice. The finished fabric is drapey and not very elastic- it does seem to have the "sproing" that I am used to with other merino yarns. After washing and wearing, the sock is a bit baggy, but not too bad. The color changes in the yarn are very short. I think there is probably too much variation in this color for many patterns. The stockinette portion of the sock foot is lovely, but I fear a whole sock in stockinette would bag a good bit. I used cabled ribbing for the second sock and it produced a much more substantial fabric. Because of the sock's silkiness and drape, I fear it will not stand up to a lot of wear unless knitted into fairly dense fabric. I used size 1 needles for the leg and size 0 needles for the foot to firm up the fabric in areas that get the mos wear for me.
The yarn was pleasant to knit, but it didn't "wow" me. It did not bleed at all, even in the wash, and seemed to keep its color after drying. I loved the colors in the skein I received. It is hard to capture in the photos (without sun again!) but the colors worked really well together and it had just the right amount of bright spots.
*So do you find this info helpful in deciding how to spend your sock yarn dollars and knitting time? Would you prefer more or less information in the future??*