Archives from February 1, 2010

Yak Yarn and Other Fun Things

Photo: Sheri Berger
Monday, February 1st, 2010 in Shop News

yak groupEvery time I walk past the Bijou Basin booth at different markets, it catches my eye. When I was at TNNA, my friend Marly (who also designed that Sweetheart Tunic that I like so much out of Bijou Basin Yak Bamboo) raved about this yarn, so this time I didn’t just walk by – I stopped in to chat. After learning more about it and handling the luscious yarn, I ordered it for us.

yakbabyYak yarn – do you know anything about it? It’s considered one of the most luxurious yarns around. It’s warmer than wool and extremely durable. It’s completely odorless (no wet wool odor when you wash it – I liked that), doesn’t shed, and is hypo-allergenic and non-irritating, as it contains no animal oils or residues. Yaks produce two different kinds of hair. The outer hair is the guard hair, which is longer, courser and stronger. These are carded, spun and braided into ropes and halters, or woven into durable rugs and bags. The second hair is the DSC03395undercoat, or “down hair”. The yaks produce this in the wintertime and it is an incredible insulator. This down is what they use to make yak yarn. Are you wondering how they collect it? The yaks get combed in the spring. And the Bijou Basin people say that the yaks like to be combed! (What a job to put on a resume – “Yak Comber”.) The fact that this is collected in the spring by hand, makes this one of the rarer luxury yarns, which is reflected in the price. It’s not going to be for everyone, but I know that some of you will jump on it and will love it. Personally, I’m looking forward to having an incredibly warm pair of socks out of it. I knit this first sock out of the Tibetan Dream Sock Yarn, which is made from 85% Yak and 15% nylon for strength and elasticity. (The pattern is Elongated Corded Rib from Sensational Knitted Socks. I did 56 stitches on a size 1 needle. Plenty of yarn in 1 skein for my size 11 socks.) We have added in three of their yarn lines and patterns to go with them, to begin with. Photos used from the Bijou Basin website with permission.

DSC03392In other news, today is Elf Lori’s first day. She looks happy about that, doesn’t she? We’re glad to have her here! And did you catch tonight’s update? Besides the Bijou Basin, we also added:

* Needle Food (new indie dyer from New Zealand)
* Fiberphile (new Merino /Cashmere/ Nylon base)
* Kollage Luscious (wool-free, just cotton and nylon)
* Alpaca With a Twist Baby (5 new colors for us)
* String Theory (Caper and Blue Stocking)
* Dream in Color (Smooshy and Classy re-stocks)
* Numma Numma (The Special).

Plus:
* Kollage square needles (in circs and DPN’s)
*  Various knitting accessories
*  Patterns (some new, some re-stocks) from: Knitspot, Samantha Roshak, and Knitting Pure and Simple.

Remember last week when I said we were buried in yarn deliveries? There was so much that we had to save some of it for next week. That just gives you more to look forward to!

(Look – Loopy made the Fetching Tags Blog. Now that he has been featured on someone else’s blog, he thinks he’s famous. He’ll be hard to live with tomorrow. Sometimes he gets The Big Head.)

Sheri whothinksbabyyaksarereallycute

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