Back in December I wrote about my first attempt at hand-dyeing yarn in which I mentioned in passing that I might dye some for the shop occasionally … Well, here it is … a tiny quantity of our own hand-dyed yarn, especially for our first birthday! Introducing Our Definitely Not! Sock Blanks in two colourways – Solar Flare (which should self stripe in socks!) and Not Barbie’s Malibu Beach House (entirely variegated). I have used those magical Double Standed sock blanks as the base … the socks will match and sock blanks are much easier to manage without a dye studio as well as being super fun to dye!
As I said in the original post about hand-dyeing, it’s hard to explain how much fun it is – in small batches, not as a commercial venture because on that scale I imagine it is mostly hard work and relief when hundreds of skeins are finished - but in order to hand-dye, I can’t unless I sell on the results or the house would just become even more stuffed with yarn!
Solar Flare, a dark blue & yellow gold which *should* self stripe xx
Also, for special occasions, it’s nice to have custom colourways … we will work to a theme next time though as these two colourways have nothing in common except that they seemed like fun colourways at the time!
No theme ... just a lot of speckles!
And the name?
The Loveliest Yarn Company promise is to bring you only the loveliest yarns but it would be beyond cheek, in fact the height of impudence, to launch a yarn and then claim in as one of the loveliest yarns! So to make sure there is no confusion, we’ve called it ‘Definitely Not’ with ‘the loveliest yarn’ implied but silent. We will let you all judge over time if it can even be considered a relatively nice yarn.
We’ve shortened it to Definitely Not Sock to make it really confusing as it Definitely is Sock yarn! ; )
About the yarn?
The acid dyes are those used by professional hand-dyers as are the yarn blanks, which have come from The Chester Wool so even if the dyeing isn’t ace, we started out well. The merino in the sock blanks is sourced in South America – Uruguay and Argentina - from a mix of farm sizes. Chester Wool ensure that none of their merino comes from farms where the Mulesing technique is used.
If you read articles by hand-dyers you will know that how to price is a tricky one. Under pricing hand-dyed yarn is wrong because should someone buy our yarn but not understand that it’s a first time yarn, then it would set the expectation that all hand-dyed should be priced like that. Setting the price too high would make no sense as I don’t have the reputation (experience, pattern support, talent, skill etc) to warrant it so the approach I have used is that I have priced it at the lower end of the market for sock blanks, covering the costs and adding a little to make it sit right in the market. It will also allow me to buy even more yarn to dye more yarn! I hope that makes sense.
Why would I try it?
All of the ‘this is our first yarn’ is not an excuse for it not being a good quality hand-dyed yarn because that has been the goal from the start. It is a first round dye but every effort has been made to ensure that it is dye fast, that the colours stay vibrant and the materials used are those used by experienced, professional hand-dyers. If you are brave enough to try them, we hope you like them and we would really value your feedback because no one gets better without knowing what to improve.
Firestorm in Socks - similar to Solar Flare but a Grey / Gold mix. Blank is vertically striped to self stripe in socks
So, that's it. I have to confess that adding this yarn to the site has been one of the most unnerving things I've done since starting out a year ago. Completely different to sourcing gorgeousness from others. Somehow like showing everyone your knickers drawer!
For now though, I'm going to repeat 'All journeys, single step' to myself and worry about it later. There is a first birthday cake that needs baking for tomorrow ... if you happen to be in the area, you'll be welcome to try some!
Happy Knitting (and shopping perhaps!)
You can find our sock blanks on the website here!