Fabulous Felting

Category: Featured Projects, Yarn Features

Many knitters and crocheters love wool fiber because it is easy to work with, is warm, forgiving and durable. Wool also has the almost magical ability to end up as a different fabric if it takes a spin in your washing machine. Though many people experience this in unfortunate accidents of shrinking a favorite garment, felting can be done intentionally to achieve fantastic results and Manos del Uruguay Wool Clasica is a perfect medium to use.

Bags are a very popular felting project that offers a lot of opportunity to experiment with other stitch techniques and textures. The Honeycomb Tote by Grace Akhrem, Amanda’s Squatty Sidekick by Amanda Berka, and the #05 Felted Tote by Angelia Robinson, from the newest Vogue Knitting Crochet Spring 2013, (shown above from left to right) are just a few patterns to inspire you.

There are so many projects beyond bags! Festive home decor items like the Star Garland or the Tiny Treasure Bowls are made quickly. The generous yardage in each skein of Wool Clasica will allow you to make many items from one skein.

If you can knit it, you can felt it! Keep in mind that when you are felting, wool can shrink up to one third of the original size of the item.  Swatching can help you get the results you desire and could make the difference when making items like slippers! The House Slippers make great gifts for every pair of feet under your roof.  You may have heard other knitters talk about the difficulty in felting white wool; this is the result of the bleaching process that is used to make the wool white. Our natural white wool does not undergo this process! You can see in mammamia’s Amy Beret how wonderfully this worked in the hat!

Beginners should not hesitate to try felting.  Each project in its pre-felted state looks uneven and awkward, but with exposure to hot water, soap and agitation, the spaces between the stitches are filled in and the project takes its proper shape.  Any mistakes made are often hard to find after the project is felted! For even more felting project ideas, check out our Pinterest board! Let us know in our Ravelry group, on our Facebook page, or Tweet us how your felting projects turn out!

Presenting Our New Spring Patterns

Category: Featured Projects, New Stuff
Get your needles ready, our spring pattern line is available! These patterns are fresh and vibrant in the extensive colorways found in the variety of Manos del Uruguay yarns. Miriam L. Felton is our Featured Designer this season. Her collection includes pieces that are perfect for layering as we transition out of winter into the warmer days of spring.
Any of these three short sleeve tops would be a great way to freshen your wardrobe and could easily be worn in a casual or dressy style. Melo combines Serena, as the main color, with stripes of Maxima. The possible color combinations are very exciting! Solis features a lace mesh pattern that creates an easy, comfortable piece with a touch of shine from our Silk Blend yarn. Algorta is just the thing if you are looking for a little bit of lace and ruffle. Serena is used here to create a wonderfully versatile garment.
Anillo features stripes of Maxima and Silk Blend in an on-trend slouchy hat style. Collarin has the most hearts out of the bunch on Ravelry; do you have it in your favorites yet? This simple cowl is worked in Silk Blend, with a pop of color. Miriam has a tutorial for creating the unique buttons, which are covered in a Lace swatch, be sure to check it out!
Varian Brandon designed Guirnalda, a short-sleeve fair isle design in Silk Blend. As spring returns, leaving the drab winter behind, you will be just as inspired to give stranded colorwork a try! Silk Blend is also used in Cassandra Milani’s Empalme cowl which is composed of several different stitch patterns. Both of Lisa R. Myers’ designs use Serena. Feston (with a scallop edge) and Calza (with a cable edge) are knit with the blend of baby alpaca and cotton, are lightweight, yet warm and cozy, perfect for when you need a little something to ward off spring breezes.
Four designs by Jocelyn J. Tunney round out the presentation. Florido is a moebius cowl knit in two colors of Silk Blend. Gradiente is for our Lace lovers;  this scarf requires one skein of each three different colorways to create this blended effect.  If you are more interested in brightening up your home, there are two afghan options: Bloques, using Maxima, and Rayas using Wool Clasica.
We hope these new designs inspire you this spring to try something new! We’d love to hear your ideas for color combinations and see your projects – please share them on our Facebook page, in our Ravelry group or send us a Tweet!