Some weeks ago now I entered a give away competition over in the BritYarn Ravelry group. The giveaway was to win a skein of Tamar which is the new yarn that Blacker Yarns has just released….I’d been reading various exciting things about the yarn on a few different blogs and liked the sound of the lustrous qualities and drapiness, and the fact that it was spun from a blend of Teeswater,Wensleydale and Leicester Longwool. …basically glossy, flopsy, wool heaven.
Isla (who was doing the giveaway) asked what colour/s you liked and what would you like to knit with it…..I’d really only seen glimpses of the wool but there was one that looked a soft primrose and I’m more than a little fond of that shade. Just after Christmas I’d treated myself to the Hansel pattern and have been wanting to knit it ever since….so the choice was easy..
And guess who’s name was picked in the draw….there was more than a little squee of happiness and a dance around the living room. I’d like to say a huge huge thank you to Isla because the giveaway skein was in fact for one of the other colours but she contacted me and asked would I like Tiddy Brook as that was the one I’d said that had really captured my heart. How kind is that.
Anyway I got home a day or so later to find a not so mysterious parcel waiting for me…not only a skein of Tamar but also a beautiful Brit Yarn bag with Ethel the sheep on it. I’ve ordered a few times now from Isla and she ties in a wee stitch marker at the top of your parcel…how perfectly matched is this one. It’s little thoughtful gestures like this that make shopping with independent and smaller shops such a pleasure.
In my excitement about winning the wool I hadn’t twigged I’d also won one of the Brit Yarn bags….I’ve had fabric shop bags before which fell apart as soon as look at them..the Brit Yarn bag is so well made, the fabric is really sturdy and the seams are sewn properly….I’ve popped in all my single breed British wool and there’s still plenty of room in there for a few more purchases.
The Tamar itself is wonderful, I’ve not yet wound it up into a ball but have un-wrapped the skein a few times to watch the yarn drape around my shoulders…drape isn’t the right word really…it’s more like a woolly waterfall, all shimmers and glistens…and the colour…just looking at it makes my heart race…I’ve taken it outside in the sunshine and the sunshine dances across it so much….
Tiddy Brook isn’t in fact a primrose yellow like I thought but is much more of a pollen yellow, it’s so polleny that I half expect a soft powder to fall from it each time I pick it up…from a distance it looks almost green, like a Spring lichen or moss…(I think it’s how shadow sits in the twist of the plied yarn that creates this gorgeous depth and dance in tone) …it changes very subtly in different lights, looking lemon possety right now as it’s all dark and dismal and overcast today, slowly becoming quite green as soon as the sun comes back out. It’s a very warm hue and just glows colour. It’s going to look amazing in a Hansel hap and I’ve promised Isla that I shall endeavour to do my very best knitting to do this wool justice…and in case you’re wondering, Bernard is not being allowed anywhere near it.
I though it best if I get a buy a shade card for the rest of the Tamar as there are a couple of other projects I’d really like to try the yarn for later… (Stumpy01 and Soupdragon are both using it for the Joeli Creates No-nylon sock kal) and so I ordered a couple yesterday from Blacker Yarns. As well as the Tamar shade card, I also bought one for their Blacker Classic range and one for their Tweed. I was having a chat the other day with a lady about shade cards and she was saying how expensive some are nowadays and how back in the day they all used to be free……personally I never begrudge spending money for a shade card, it’s pretty impossible to tell on a computer screen what shade something is, and with a shade card you can take it outside and see how the yarn looks in different light. Also you’re much less likely to then order a yarn that isn’t quite the right colour you were hoping it would be.
Anyway the Blacker Yarns shade cards are incredibly good value for money. I particularly like how the yarn isn’t glued down but you can take it out and move the colours around.
I won’t start the Hansel this week as I’ve got a blue shawl on the needles at the moment for the Caithness Craft Collective’s unkal (the unicorn division) and am also about to cast on a pair of socks. But importantly, I need to give a proper bit of thinking to the other colours the hap requires..I’d originally thought to use Camel and Lerryn (a mustard gold and a bright leaf green) but there are a couple of blue greens (Shales Brook and Tresillian) that are possibly even nicer…..