A few new yarns have arrived, some that many of you have been waiting for. One of them I've already cast on myself!
First, this week's Trekking shipment included the Trekking 126, otherwise known as the Brach's Candy colorway (and several other new colors as well). This color came out several years ago and was then discontinued. Due to demand, it's now being dyed again. I don't know for how long, but I have quite a supply here. Aren't these about the cutest socks you've ever seen? I couldn't resist and cast mine on already- I have about two inches completed- knit while Joe and I watched the season premier of Bones last night. There are few shows we watch together, but that's one of them. And I bet the new JJ Abrams show, Fringe, will be another one. Knitting and fall TV show premiers- are there two things that go better together?
Yes, Pagewood Farms sock yarn has arrived. I have four lines to offer you: Alyeska (merino/cashmere/nylon), Denali(merino/nylon), St. Elias (BFL/nylon) and Yukon (merino/bamboo/nylon). Yukon is reviewed below by my good friend Anne. She's best judge of fiber I know, and the color she knit, Navajo, is totally not her color. So I was suprised that she offered to test knit it when I had yarn out with all my test knitters. But I'm really pleased with what she has to say, and you can read that below. You can read reviews for the other Pagewood Farm sock yarns following in the next week.
The Skein: Because of the bamboo, this yarn has a pretty soft sheen to it, kind of like a silk blend would, and it feels soft and silky. There were no knots and just one one-ply splice in the entire skein. I had a ton of yarn left over at the end, so I could have made these much taller/longer. I wear size eight shoes, so a person with bigger feet or ankles could still get a pair of full-sized socks from one skein.
The Knitting: My sock knit up smoothly on size 1 Addi Turbo circulars. I had some splitting, but the mini mock cables force some needle acrobatics in tight spaces, so I wasn't suprised. In straight stockinette, it was smooth sailing. The yarn doesn't have quite as much bounce to it as other sock yarns, again on account of the bamboo, but you trade that for the luster.
The Colors: I originally started out with a lace pattern that, unfortunately, the colors obscured. So I switched to a mini mock cable pattern--good decision. The colors in the yarn are muted enough so that the cables still pop. I did get some pooling (you can see it in a few of the pictures), and although it's not too obvious for me, I know there are people in the "No Pooling. Ever" camp, so they should be aware. That being said, I wish I had a camera that could properly record the colors. They're much deeper and mroe sophisticated than the photos show. The brights fade into blended areas that are muted, but not muddy. I think the finished fabric looks like a watercolor painting.
The Wear: I'm probably not the best person to judge this, because I only wear my handknit socks around the house in the fall and winter and so can't judge how they'd wear with shoes. I did wear them around the house after I finished them (despite the heat- Dedication, thy name is Anne), and they didn't show much more than a bit of fuzzing on the soles. They didn't bag or scrunch at all- there's plenty of merino to keep these in shape.
The Recommendation: Two thumbs up- one for sheen, one for color. Oh, and a third (I'll use Allison's, she won't mind) for the size of the skein.