INTRODUCING THE DONNA VEST

In this episode I will introduce our Donna Vest. This wonderful knitting kit is using our Donna Yarn in super bulky weight. Although I’m not actually knitting in the video I will show you how the project is constructed as well as mention a few things you should know before knitting the Donna Vest.

You can purchase the kit and download the free pattern here:
https://www.skeino.com/donna-vest.html

 

What do you think about this new design? I can see this to be worn over a blouse or a shirt. The super bulky texture is a great contrast. Do you agree? Please let me know in the comments.

 

Love,

Bjorn

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HOW TO CHANGE YARNS WITHOUT ENDS

In this video I will show you how to join to yarns without having to weave in ends. This technique is needed for many knitting projects. I will use our SKEINO Nohea Shawl as an example.

 

As always I hope that you enjoyed this video. Please comment and ask here or on Youtube. Also feel free to request any knitting related subject that you would like me to cover in the SKEINO video blog.

#happyknitting

Love,

Bjorn

SWATCHING LIKE A PRO

In this video I will talk about swatching. It’s always good to make a swatch before starting a knitting project just to make sure that the gauge given in the pattern is actually the one that’s right for you.

Here is how you can make a swatch that will help you to make the most out of your knitting project:

 

This week’s episode is a little bit more on the basic side. However  we get a lot of questions from our community about how to find the right gauge for their projects. I think the best way to do so is to make a swatch before you actually start with the pattern.

I hope you liked this video and as always please let me know your questions in the comments section here in the blog or on Youtube.

#happyknitting

Love,

Bjorn

FINISHING – EPISODE 1

Finishing your piece is so important when knitting! Today I will show you 2 finishing techniques that I really like: Croched edges and Self-fringing. It’s quite easy to do so just sit back and watch me explain these two knitting techniques in our weekly knitting blog.

Part 1: Crochet Edges
Part 2: Self-fringing through yarn changes

I hope you liked this episode. I will do a few more on the subject of finishing showing you some more techniques that I personally like a lot. Please let me know your questions and comments here in the comment section or directly on Youtube.

…And as always: #happyknitting

Love,

Bjorn

THE SECRETS OF HAND DYEING YARN

the-secrets-of-hand-dyeing

As you can see this week there is no video. I suffered an injury on my hand and I cannot knit well at the moment. Therefore I have this written post for you.

We receive a lot of positive feedback from our customers about the colors of our yarns. As with many things in life there are two important things about hand dyeing yarns: education and experience. In today’s blog post I will talk about dyeing different types of fibers and how to care for them.

The first and most important thing you have to consider is if a fiber is coming from an animal or from a plant. Due to the proteins within the fibers they will behave quite differently during the dye process. At SKEINO we work mostly with merino and alpaca yarns on the animal side and with bamboo blends on the plant side. We also use silk blends. They are not made from plants but they behave similarly to the latter. Here is what differences there are between them:

Merino Superwash Yarns

Merino yarns can be treated so that they become ‘superwash’, meaning that the fibers will lose the ability to felt. Finished products that have been knitted with a superwash yarn can be machine washed and do not felt. However be careful: ‘superwash’ does not mean you can just use any of the settings of your washing machine. Think about the skill, time and effort you have put into your handcrafted piece. Give your favorite shawl, jacket or socks a long life by choosing a gentle setting with less agitation and less temperature.

Superwash yarns from animal fibers are fascinating to me as a hand dyer. Dye powders react much more intense with them, creating wonderfully vibrant and brilliant colors.

I have experimented a lot with superwash yarns in order to learn their secrets and behavior. I learned that applying the dye liquid on very wet yarns creates different shades than on on dry spun yarns. I also found out that pastels only need very few dye pigments.

Very interesting is the fact that superwash yarns are able to go through a dye process twice without being damaged. I have over dyed several colors and they look stunning! However this will only work when dyeing a lighter yarn into a darker color.

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The colorway Crocus has been over dyed with the colorway Peacock. Note how perfect the result is

Blends

Merino wool blended with plant fibers (Bamboo or Rayon) will be quite shiny after the dye process. However the plant fibers in the blended yarn are not taking the dyes as much as pure animal fibres. The result is that colors are mainly on the pastel side.

Silks and silk blended yarns show the sheen of the silk. The more silk is in the blend, the more sheen you will see.

Alpaca fibers on the other hand are not as bright but very beautiful and they support the softness of the yarn.

Here are some examples of the different fibers:

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Merino supewash yarn: Note how brightly the colors pop

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Bamboo / Merino blend superwash yarn: the plant fibers (bamboo) are taking less dye pigment than the merino fibers. The result is a “silvery sheen”

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Tencel / Merino superwash blend: The Tencel (rayon fibers) takes very few dye pigments creating an even stronger and beautiful sheen

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100% Fine Merino Farm Yarn: While showing vibrant colors a “frosty” effect can be seen (burgundy part of the skein)

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Fancy Yarns (merino twisted with a nylon eyelash yarn): The nylon fibers are taking the pigments very well producing rich and vibrant colors

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60% silk / 40% merino blend: While still showing vibrant colors, the silk creates a wonderful sheen

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Alpaca yarn: Less vibrant colors but with a beautiful softness effect to it

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Feather light Alpaca: The colors are on the muted side but the softness effect is a lot stronger creating a fluffy look & feel

I hope you enjoyed this exclusive insight to the secrets of hand dyeing yarn. This post has a more technical approach to it but I tried to keep it easy to understand. If you are a hand dyer yourself, you might want to try one or two things I mentioned in this post. If you are a knitter this article might help you to understand why a yarn has a certain look & feel to it.

When designing a SKEINO knitting kit my starting point is always to choose the perfect yarn for the piece. Many things have to be taken into account such as the season of the year, weight of the yarn and intensity of the colors and how to combine them, just name a few.

I hope you enjoyed this rather long post. For any questions please use the comment section below.

And as always: #happyknitting

Love,

Bjorn

 

 

HOW A STITCH SITS ON A KNITTING NEEDLE

In this episode I will talk about knitting basics again. We receive a lot of requests from knitters who want to know more about the way I knit and why I’m doing or not doing certain things.

This video talks about how a stitch sits on a knitting needle and what you can do wrong. I used our super bulky Donna yarn so that you can follow what I’m doing easily.

And remember what my grandma always said: “It’s all about not crossing the legs!” 🙂


Click the image above to watch the video.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s episode. For more knitting videos please subscribe to our Youtube channel. If you have any questions or comments please write your thoughts here in the comment section or directly on Youtube.

…And as always: #happyknitting

 

Love,

Bjorn

MEET THE CRUISE SHAWL

If you followed our blog you will know that I was on a cruise from Florida to Barcelona / Spain not too long ago. Even though the purpose of our trip was to relax a little I just couldn’t get the knitting out of my mind. The cruise was so inspiring that I came up with a new design project and the quiet days aboard the ship gave me enough time to finish it.

In today’s video I will present the finished design which is called the Cruise Shawl. This knitting kit is constructed in a star shape. In the video I will talk about why I chose that form for the shawl. On the cruise they had a daily knitting group and we met a bunch of wonderful ladies there. You can learn more about them here and here.

I felt that it would be a nice gesture to name our Cruise Shawl after our new knitter friends and so we asked everybody for their favorite color and we chose a Cruise Shawl colorway for every lady of the knitting group accordingly.

Click on the image to watch the video blog.

The Cruise Shawl is available as a knitting kit on the SKEINO website so you can have a look at each of the colorways.

I had such a wonderful time (not only when knitting) and I can’t wait to go on another cruise, especially when it’s so inspiring to come up with new designs!

What do you think about the Cruise Shawl? Please let me know in the comments section or directly on Youtube.

…And as always: #happyknitting

 

Love,

Bjorn