Spotlight on Michele Wang

Category: Featured Projects

Fairmount Fibers is proud to have established relationships with so many talented designers. In today’s post, we’d like to put a spotlight on designer Michele Wang. Michele is the featured designer for the 2016 pattern collection released in July. Her sweater designs in the collection are richly textured and cozy. We reached out to Michele asking if she would share a bit of her background and experience working with Manos del Uruguay yarns. She was generous and kind with her time and we’re pleased to share her responses with you!


How did you first come to work with Manos yarns? 
When I first started knitting, I visited Purl Soho and remember very clearly seeing Manos yarns for the first time. The colors were so beautiful and the rustic texture to the Clasica really caught my eye. Since I was a beginner, I thought I would indulge in such beautiful yarn when I became more experienced. A few years later, I started working at Knitty City in NYC and played around with some Maxima and Serena yarns. I only swatched the yarns and never found time to work them into a project. When I was approached to be the featured designer for this collection, I was thrilled I could finally work closely and more in-depth with Manos which had caught my eyes so many years earlier.


How did you get started knitting / crocheting / designing? Who taught you?
I started knitting for many different reasons. I had just run the NYC Marathon and was looking for something that was more relaxing and sedentary. I was also working at a corporate job that I didn’t like very much. So I always had my eye out for distractions that could possibly turn into another career. A friend suggested I try knitting since I always had an interest in textiles and fashion. I loved the idea of working with my hands, comfortably sitting on my couch and the idea of possibly opening a yarn store.


Do you have a favorite base or colorway in the Manos Yarn line?
While working on this collection, I would have said Maxima in Sand, the yarn used for Morilla. It’s such a beautiful soft color and soft yet sturdy base. But I’d have to say that the new Milo is really lovely to work with. I love the slight sheen and interesting halo the linen gives the yarn. In addition to all the neutrals, I love the Baltico colorway. I saw it at TNNA in June, and that color seemed to glow from within and really stood out to me. I’d love to do something with Milo in the future!


Where do you draw inspiration from? 
I mostly draw inspiration from current trends and from the average New Yorker. I often spy something on the subway that can be translated into knitwear. Other times, I’m given direction by mood boards by yarn companies and publications and I use those as a springboard.


Do you have a great tip or trick we could share? 
The most amazing tip is something I learned from Norah Gaughan. She suggested using the Alternate Cable Cast-On instead of a Tubular CO for 1×1 Ribbing. I’ve been using it ever since. It’s still fussier than a Long-Tail or Knitted-On Cast-On, but much less fussy than a Tubular Cast-On.

Michele has a YouTube channel! Check it out to see her video about her sweater designs in Manos Yarns!

Fall Pattern Round-Up

Category: Featured Projects

When the weather takes a turn to cooler nights and crisp breezes, many knitters and crocheters are more than ready to start a new project! If you are looking for a new sweater or accessory, there are a number of new patterns from which to choose before casting on the first stitch. Today we are spotlighting several of the newest fall patterns that call for Manos del Uruguay yarns!

Passaic Pullover Crochet

Cables are a classic on fall sweaters, wouldn’t you agree? The Passaic Pullover, designed by Anastasia Popova in Interweave Crochet Fall 2016, is crocheted in Manos Serena. The fiber blend and our kettle-dyeing process give the colors a heathered, stonewashed look. Harbor is the colorway shown here.

Whisper Tee in Manos Serena

Amy Herzog’s new book, You Can Knit That, includes the Whisper Tee in Manos Serena. The sweater is knit in two pieces, with integrated cap sleeves, i-cord trim, and waist shaping. Lightweight and soft, this will be a multi-season layering piece! Shown here in the Hare colorway.

Celebration Shawl in Manos Clara

Knitscene’s Winter 2016 issue is out and includes the Celebration Shawl designed by Ruth Garcia-Alcantud. The asymmetrical triangle shawl is knit from one tip to the wide side, with a final wingspan of 60″ or 88″ depending on the size you make. Clara is the called-for yarn, shown here in the Hortensia colorway.

Dalit Cardigan in Fino Indra Toque

Courtney Spainhower’s new collection, Line + Reflection, includes two pieces in Manos del Uruguay yarns. The Dalit Cardigan is an oversized layering cardigan in Fino. It is worked flat in a single piece from the top down, featuring brioche increases to shape the yoke. The Indra Toque, knit with one skein of Serena, is a perfect accessory as it is lightweight, yet warm.

Pinktastic Pop Slouch in Gloria


October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and designer Grace Akhrem is hosting a knit-along (KAL) in her Ravelry group. The Pinktastic Pop Slouch pattern is available for purchase on Ravelry, with a portion of the price being donated to the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Grace knit the original with one skein of Manos Gloria, in the Estancia colorway.  The KAL goes until October 31, 2016. Knitters that cast on this month and share a photo with the group on or before October 31, 2016, will be eligible to win one of three Manos del Uruguay yarn prizes!

Which fall patterns are you pairing with Manos Yarns? Connect with us on Facebook, Ravelry, or Instagram!

Back to School: Projects for Kids

Category: Featured Projects

The last several weeks in North America are unofficially recognized as the “Back to School” season. Part of the back- to-school preparations is getting new supplies for the school year. Kids keep growing and can always use a new sweater, slippers or hat! Today we’re spotlighting projects in Manos del Uruguay yarns for the little ones!

Ravelry projects in Manos Yarns

The weather can still be warm this time of year, but accessories for babies and kids are quite portable and quick, without overheating you as you sit and knit. A few Ravelry projects that caught our eye are SuzyQue’s Foxy Hats in Maxima and Ashleynutrition’s Sister Barleys in Gloria. EmilyMarianne’s Slippers for Oscar combine handspun yarn with Maxima for a very sweet project! Spinzilla spinners, this is a great idea to keep in mind as a way to use your handspun with your favorite Manos Yarn. Why not spin with Manos Merino Roving while you’re at it?

Knits for baby in Manos Yarns

The Fairmount Fibers team has a new collection of garments and a blanket for babies (with sizing up through the toddlers). The patterns by Melissa LaBarre are a great opportunity to work with Manos yarns that maybe you have been eyeing for a while, but weren’t quite ready to make an adult sized sweater. The extensive color range of the yarns mean you can work with a classic or modern color palette! Shown above, clockwise from left: Trucha in Gloria, Habanero in Clara, and Pimiento in Alegria.


Espinaca is a baby blanket, approximately 28″ square, knit with two colors of Franca. You could keep going in the pattern to make it larger, but little laps will appreciate the blanket when they cuddle up for a story!

Just like in school, when they have “show and share” day, we love to see your projects! Feel free to share them at every stage of the project, from casting on to binding off. You can find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Ravelry.

Manos Alegria for Non-Sock Projects

Category: Featured Projects

Manos del Uruguay Alegria is many knitters’ go-to for sock projects, but what if you’re not a sock knitter? The generous yardage, soft hand, and easy-care blend make it a great choice for a variety of garments and items.

Free Knitting Patterns for Manos Alegria

The North American distributors of Alegria, Fairmount Fibers, have five free patterns calling for Alegria,  all of which are not socks! Shown clockwise from top left: Alegria Shadow Shawl, Sage Smudging Scarf, Esquina Cowl, Tejido Cowl, and Racimo Cowl. All call for just one skein of Alegria; the Tejido Cowl also calls for one skein of Fino.

MissBlaine's Mama & Newborn Vertebrae sweaters in Alegria Turnberry knit in Alegria by Andy1m

On Ravelry, many knitters have used the Locura Fluo colorway to add a pop of wild color. It is hard to pick a favorite, but the matching set of Mama and Newborn Vertebrae sweaters knit by MissBlaine. Turnberry, knit by Andy1m, is in the Foil colorway. Remember, Alegria now is available in a wide range of tonal colorways! They are the perfect complement to the variegated options.

Whether you choose to knit socks with Alegria or are inspired to knit or crochet a non-sock project, we do hope you’ll share your work with us! Check out our Pinterest boards for project inspiration for all projects with Alegria, post your projects to the Ravelry group, or tag us on Facebook or Instagram!

Manos Alegria for Socks

Category: Featured Projects

Start Your Socks!

It’s summertime here in North America and very hazy, hot, and humid! The temperature may rise, but this does not mean that the knitting needs to be put down. Socks are a knitter’s go-to project this time of year! A bonus to socks for summer knitting, as opposed to a sweater, is that as the project increases and nears completion, socks maintain their portability. Manos del Uruguay Alegria is a perfect yarn for sock knitters, just take a look at these designs and projects!

Designers use Manos Alegria in Sock designs

Alegria is a blend of 75% superwash merino / 25% polyamide with a rich, cushy hand. There are 31 hand-painted variegated colorways that shine in a plain or textured pattern. Shown above, clockwise from left, are the SpringTastic Socks by Stefanie Goodwin-Ritter, the Sweet Feet Pedicure Socks (a free pattern) by Little Church Knits, and the Waffle Alegria Socks by Olivia Weiss.

Socks knit in Manos del Uruguay Alegria

Knitters on Ravelry enjoy sharing their sock projects; have you shared your pair in our group yet? Here are a few projects that caught our eye. Above left, nzfriend’s Rivercat Socks in Alegria Acero. Center, top to bottom, PattyMach’s Purled Ladders in Pastel Tiza, justlivin’s Catch Me If You Can Socks in Locura Fluo, and Varant’s Rainy Day socks in Otono. On the right, mistresspol’s Rainbow Daleks in Locura Fluo.

Alegria in Semi-Solids

There are also 24 hand-painted semi-solid colorways of Alegria that perfectly complement the variegated colorways. It may seem counterintuitive to start a sock project when you’re enjoying your sandals, but you’ll be happy you did when the weather turns colder! We invite you to show off your socks by sharing them with us on Facebook and Instagram. Stay tuned for our next blog post when we spotlight projects and designs in Alegria that are not-socks!