It’s always tricky at this time of year to select the perfect gift for the knitter or crocheter in your life. Often, your intended recipient can appear to be a crafter who has everything: all the cool, useful little gadgets, needles for every occasion and project bags to match every outfit and work in progress. So, you decide the one thing every yarn aficionado needs – always – is a little more yarn.
This seems like a good idea, until, of course, you decide to start exploring the offerings out there and realise that we crafty folk are blessed with a great choice from a wide range of both commercial and independent producers. I’ve collected here a selection of my favourite dyers and yarns to give you a little head start! In true Christmas style, I’ve also based the colour choices around those you’ll find wrapping the chocolates in a box of Cadbury’s Roses, that perennial family favourite during the festive season. And I am talking the old school version here, not the new-fangled one. So, sit back, grab your hot chocolate and choose your favourite chocolate!
Hazelnut Swirl: DyeForYarn
Nobody does saturated, jewel like tones and depth of colour quite like Cordula and Nicole of DyeForYarn in Germany. If your intended recipient is a fan of knitting with silk blends, or you just want something that will shimmer when they open your gift, you are sure to find that perfect skein here.
DyeForYarn Silk Lace Yarn in Love is Poison OOAK, 100% Silk, 800yds/750m per 100g, RRP £21.93
Golden Barrel: Quaere
Rhode Island based Quaere Fibres do some fabulous self striping yarns, for those who like a bit of fun in their lives. They also do some great solids, and this sunshine skein will make fabulous shawls and garments.
Quaere Fibre Fingering/Sock Yarn Singles in Gold, 70% Superwash Merino, 30% Silk, 438yds/400m per 100g, RRP £16.36
The Blue Almond tin foil wrapped one you used to be able to get when there were still Bourneville mini bars in there: Coach House Yarns
New dyer Linda, based in Oldham, has created a series of yarns based around another classic film that is bound to be gracing terrestrial TV this Christmas season: Labyrinth. Inspired by the legendary Goblin King himself, this pretty blue colourway reminded me of those almond chocolates with the ridges in, also popular in the late 80s and early 90s, but now, apparently extinct.
Coach House Yarns Opulence 4ply in Goblin King, 75% Organic Falkland Merino, 25% Silk, 369yds/337m per 100g, RRP £16.50
Caramel Velvet: Kettle Yarn Co
There are no shortage of luxury blends or gorgeous shimmering semi solids at Kettle Yarn Co. Hand dyed by Linda, Canadian but living in the UK, your knitter will be thrilled to receive one of these skeins. Personally tested using Linda’s own rigorous regime and awarded a shaver rating according to their performance, you can be sure these yarns will stand up to wear.
Kettle Yarn Co Westminster in Holly, 55% Camel, 45% silk, 583 yds/533m per 100g, RRP £24
Strawberry Dreams: Eden Cottage Yarns
Who hasn’t fought over the strawberry creme in a tin of Roses? Eden Cottage Yarns’ Victoria hand dyes all her yarns at home in her kitchen, and if your knitter is into understated palettes that allow the projects to shine through, look no further. This skein is 50% baby yak – ideal for those knitters who love to try different fibres.
Eden Cottage Yarns Bedale 4ply in Fucshia, 50% Baby Yak, 50% Mulberry Silk, 436yds/400m per 100g, RRP £24.
About the guest writer:
Jo Milmine is a podcaster and blogger based in Scotland. She co-owns The Golden Skein, the company that brings meticulously curated luxury yarn clubs showcasing the finest hand dyed yarn the world has to offer. Passionate about crafting (and comedy knitting patterns), you’ll find her podcasting as Shinybees.