viernes, 30 de julio de 2010

Sheep Week - Giveaway Winner!

Goodbye, Los Manantiales -- it was good to explore your grassy pastures, stone steps and walkways, and fruit trees! We had a wonderful time!

[caption id="attachment_533" align="aligncenter" width="456" caption="photo by Ignacio Abella"]photo by Ignacio Abella[/caption]

And now, the two great rams will choose the giveaway winner! The winner will receive, by mail:

1 skein of Silky Merino in Celeste

1 skein of Silky Merino in Helechos

2 skeins of Silky Merino in Tatami

1 skein of Worsted Merino in Natural

2 skeins of Rios in Coco

1 skein of Gruesa in Natural (Gruesa is Corriedale! We felt we needed to represent the other sheep here in Uruguay a little, too!)

Congratulations to Glockeroo for winning this great prize! Thank you for your sweet comments, everyone -- it has been a great Sheep Week! Glockeroo, we'll contact you for your mailing address.

Chau, Hannah

jueves, 29 de julio de 2010

Sheep Week - The Rumble of Hooves

This herd is the largest breeding herd of ewes (3,200) in all of Uruguay. Many farms may have a few more ewes, but these ewes are all breeding stock. A few of them even have lambs, and it was a real treat to see the gauchos round them up so we could see them in a group.

[caption id="attachment_526" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_527" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_530" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

[caption id="attachment_529" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

Stay tuned. Tomorrow is the last day of Sheep Week and the winner (and prize) of the Sheep Week giveaway will be announced!

Chau, Hannah

miércoles, 28 de julio de 2010

Sheep Week Color Feature - Paysandu

photo by Hannah Thiessen
photo by Hannah Thiessen

Feeling inspired? Try Malabrigo in these colorways!

Sock in Natural, Chunky in Pearl, Silky in Tatami, Rasta in Natural, Silky in Helechos, Rios in Coco, Twist in Zinc, Worsted in Jewel Blue
Sock in Natural, Chunky in Pearl, Silky in Tatami, Rasta in Natural, Silky in Helechos, Rios in Coco, Twist in Zinc, Worsted in Jewel Blue

Chau, Hannah

martes, 27 de julio de 2010

Sheep Week - Fun Factoids

[caption id="attachment_511" align="alignleft" width="225" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

They tell you not to look a gift horse in the mouth, but does the same go for a Malabrigo sheep? No way! You can tell how old a sheep is by looking at how many teeth have grown in on the front of the bottom jaw. The sheep to the left is a very young sheep - only one year old. When lambs are born, they have a small set of milk teeth and an upper dental pad.

Sheep are marked with a plastic earring that is put in very carefully - the sheep's ears are extremely delicate and the farmers are very concerned about risking pain or infection. Every sheep is pierced with great care. Some farmers even make sure that their sheep can be identified if their tag comes off by tattooing the inside of the ear with the same number.  All the numbers are often entered into a computerized data system with information on the micron count, age, and health of each sheep.

[caption id="attachment_512" align="aligncenter" width="262" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

Contrary to what you may think, sheep aren't only judged on micron or luminosity (the whiteness of the fleece), but also their general health and structure. If a sheep has a lopsided gait or his legs are too short, even with a perfect fleece, he will score lower in competitions than a sheep that has a good build.

Chau, Hannah

lunes, 26 de julio de 2010

Sheep Week - Wool Marking

[caption id="attachment_505" align="aligncenter" width="332" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

The sheep we use for Malabrigo are only the finest merino sheep in Uruguay. This means that the farms have to meet our high standards too, especially in areas like animal treatment, cleanliness, and herd management. SUL, which monitors regulations of wool breeding and herd management, keeps very high quality standards as well. For instance, the Uruguayan wool farmers are not allowed to use mulesing methods to deal with flystrike -- instead, they are trying to breed out the excess folds, and keep their herds small enough to deal with infection and disease.

The herd I visited is located in Paysandu, which is one of the Uruguyan states that contains the most wool farming. The ground there is rocky, which makes it perfect for sheep, who are best left to nibble at what grows up through the rocky ground. If they have too much food, the micron and fineness of the wool is compromised -- too little, and the sheep are unhealthy and produce brittle fleeces and fibers. The balance between the two is crucial, and herders pay attention.

[caption id="attachment_506" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

When shearing season comes around, the herds are marked for quality. Sheep marked with one blue dot (the paint is a chalky substance which washes out when the fleece is cleaned) are fine -- those marked with two blue dots are the superfine sheep that win competitions. The finest wool at this farm is some of the finest in all of Uruguay. Malabrigo purchases  the wool that this farm produces, so you are, for sure, going to be knitting with wool from these sheep!

Chau, Hannah

domingo, 25 de julio de 2010

Sheep Week Kickoff!

[caption id="attachment_500" align="aligncenter" width="452" caption="photo by Hannah Thiessen"]photo by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

What are these sheep doing? Oh! They're competing to be on SHEEP WEEK!

After going on a really enlightening trip to one of our biggest suppliers of merino in Paysandu, we thought it would be really fun to give you guys a knitter's version of 'Shark Week'! This week will be Sheep Week on the blog, culminating in a giveaway at the end! Updates every day -- stay tuned to learn everything you can about the Malabrigo Sheep and the process of selection for your favorite wool!

Chau, Hannah

viernes, 23 de julio de 2010

Howling Winds Cowl - New Pattern!

[caption id="attachment_497" align="aligncenter" width="289" caption="Howling Winds Cowl, by Hannah Thiessen"]Howling Winds Cowl, by Hannah Thiessen[/caption]

The Howling Winds Cowl has finally been released! Start looking for it at your local yarn stores next month, as copies can be obtained through their rep and are free with a purchase of a skein of Rasta. The pattern is made in exactly one skein of Rasta in Solis, but would look good in any of Rasta's colorways. It knits up quickly and is a great gift for yourself, or anyone who lives in colder climates!

If you have already purchased a skein of Rasta, but still want to knit the cowl, the pattern is available!

Weekly Color Feature - Deepest Blues

blue mosaic

1. Hopping Fish, 2. The Clouds and Parliament, 3. UK - Oxford - Port Meadow floods - blue v2, 4. Blacklight Jellies, 5. Untitled, 6. SourCherries SW Merino Glade, 7. Blue ice cave at the Jostedalsbreen glacier, 8. Blue glass

Feeling inspired? Check out these great Malabrigo colorways:

[caption id="attachment_493" align="aligncenter" width="418" caption="Worsted in Marine, Azul Bolita; Sock in Azules, Cote d'Azure; Organic Cotton in Indigo; Twist in Green-Gray, Azul Profundo; Lace in Stone Blue"]Worsted in Marine, Azul Bolita; Sock in Azules, Cote d'Azure; Organic Cotton in Indigo; Twist in Green-Gray, Azul Profundo; Lace in Stone Blue[/caption]

Chau, Hannah

lunes, 19 de julio de 2010

Patterns for Aquarella!

[caption id="attachment_483" align="aligncenter" width="335" caption="Capillata by Myhrria Resneck"]Capillata by Myhrria Resneck[/caption]

We don't get to see too many patterns specifically designed for our watercolored yarn, Aquarella. It's super bulky, very textured, and fun to knit with -- most people buy it for scarves. But it is so fun to see it knit up in a pattern specifically designed for it! Click the picture to go to the Ravelry link for this Capilatta wrap! It requires roughly 6 skeins of Aquarella for most sizes - a few more and a few less for the smallest and largest. I love the sideways construction!

Chau, Hannah

viernes, 16 de julio de 2010

Interweave Knits, Fall 2010

[caption id="attachment_423" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Battleboro Hat by Melissa LaBarre, Interweave Knits Fall 2010"]photographer, Kathryn Martin[/caption]

photo:  Kathryn Martin

We already featured this gorgeous hat in one of our project mosaics, but be sure to look for it in your latest issue of Interweave Knits, too!

Knitting with Heart - The Pink Lemonade Shawl

[caption id="attachment_474" align="aligncenter" width="402" caption="The Pink Lemonade Shawl, designed by Tricia Lewis"]The Pink Lemonade Shawl, designed by Tricia Lewis[/caption]

We wanted to highlight a pattern very close to our hearts, the Pink Lemonade Shawl recently released by designer Tricia Lewis. This shawl is not only lovely, but has a lovely message behind it -- Tricia designed the pattern to celebrate how many members of the Malabrigo Junkies have won personal battles with breast cancer in the last few years. In an effort to assist with cancer research and eradication, Tricia has announced that she'll be donating 100% of the profits from each shawl's purchase to Susan G. Komen for the cure. The shawl is knit in Malabrigo sock.

[caption id="attachment_476" align="aligncenter" width="333" caption="Pink Lemonade Shawl, by Tricia Lewis"]Pink Lemonade Shawl, by Tricia Lewis[/caption]

martes, 13 de julio de 2010

Weekly Color Feature -- Orange You Glad?

orange color feature

1. Phoebity scarf, 2. Pumpkins, 3. nothing is as it seams I, 4. Red Torii, 5. Potholders.. , 6. Peat, 7. Terracotta Dos, 8. Fat Cat Knits "Woodsman"

Feeling inspired? Try these Malabrigo Colorways:

[caption id="attachment_470" align="aligncenter" width="410" caption="Rios in Glazed Carrot, Worsted in Apricot, Cinnabar, Rhodesian, Gruesa in Ladrillo, Sock in Terracotta, Silky in Coral, Twist in Sunset"]Rios in Glazed Carrot, Worsted in Apricot, Cinnabar, Rhodesian, Gruesa in Ladrillo, Sock in Terracotta, Silky in Coral, Twist in Sunset[/caption]

Chau, Hannah

domingo, 11 de julio de 2010

Interview with Kathryn & Grace of KathrynIvy

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="373" caption="Yellow Harvest Mittens"]Yellow Harvest Mittens[/caption]

We really love to see our yarns knit up -- it is always amazing when someone chooses one of our colors or yarns for any project. After all, knitting isn't just about instant gratification. The garments that people knit, crochet, create, are heirloom pieces. They'll be used again and again, and seen by many people as an example of your hard work and craft.

Recently, we've decided to feature some of our favorite Malabrigo bloggers - folks who regularly make lovely projects out of our yarns and help introduce them in the most beautiful of ways to friends, family, and other crafters. One of our favorite blogs is written by the sister team Alice and Grace, of KathrynIvy. And they even agreed to let me interview them!

What was your first project using Malabrigo? What yarn did you use, and in what colorway? Do you remember what drew you to the skein?

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="166" caption="Tomten Jacket"]Tomten Jacket[/caption]

Alice: My first project with Malabrigo was a Tomten Jacket for my daughter using worsted in Purple Mystery and Orchid. The colors were perfect for a toddler!  Camdyn got so much use out of that jacket because it was so soft and cuddly. She wore it until it was way too small for her.
Grace: I didn't try working with Malabrigo until Alice had already used it for a few projects and she told me I absolutely had to give it a try. I broke down and got my first skein of Malabrigo when I saw a skein of Worsted Glazed Carrot being destashed on Ravelry. I used it to knit myself a Koolhaas cap and it is still one of the softest things I've ever knit.

Is there a color you like most?

Alice: I think my all time fave is Polar Morn, with Glazed Carrot and Natural close

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="172" caption="Revolution Baby Blanket"]Revolution Baby Blanket[/caption]


Grace: In my book nothing beats Frank Ochre!

What is your favorite Malabrigo Yarn line?

Alice: What a toughie!  I recently used Twist for the first time and it was even dreamier than I expected.  I don't know if anything can compete with my love for good ol' Worsted though.

Grace: I have to agree with Alice. Worsted is my go to yarn! It's so versatile, soft, and the color selection is just unbeatable. I think Silky Merino and Sock are very close runners up.

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="139" caption="Purple Pachyderm Vest"]Purple Pachyderm Vest[/caption]

Why do you use Malabrigo for so many projects?

Alice: There is a Malabrigo yarn that is perfect for every type of project.  The quality and beauty of the yarn really elevates my knitting as a whole.  Plus, the yardage and range of colors can't be beat!

Grace: Once I started using Malabrigo, most of the other yarns I had just seemed so rough! Each skein of Malabrigo, no matter the type, always feels so luxurious as you knit with it and I usually don't want to set my project down until I've finished.

What is your favorite project to date made out of our yarn?

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="136" caption="Yoked Cardigan"]Yoked Cardigan[/caption]

Alice: It seems like I love each thing I knit with Malabrigo more than the one before... though I do have a major affinity towards the sweaters I've knit my daughter. I especially love the Yoked Cardigan I knit her in Glazed Carrot during Malabrigo March earlier this year.

Grace: My favorite project would have to be the the Robot Mittens I designed in Worsted. Malabrigo yarns look amazing in colorwork and the fabric is soft and squishy.

What are your favorite sources of inspiration?

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="152" caption="Pile-Up Pups in Worsted"]Pile-Up Pups in Worsted[/caption]

Alice: I enjoy browsing around Ravelry, especially the FOs thread on the Mal Junkies board, which always has quality knitting to drool over.  I also enjoy the outdoors and gather a lot of inspiration from the colors and textures you can find in nature.

Grace: I love looking at antique textiles, samplers, needle points, and Native American weavings. A lot of the designs can be translated into modern knits. Ravelry is also a great resource of information and browsing all of the different projects can be overwhelmingly inspirational. However I probably get most of my inspiration from my sister, Alice. We have a great time bouncing ideas off each other!

Alice and Grace released a pattern this year in Malabrigo Worsted -- colorwork mittens with a robot love theme (click the picture below to go to the Ravelry pattern page). Their projects are always lovely examples of creativity and application - the right yarn and colors for ever knit! You can check out their blog at and read up on all their awesome work!

Chau, Hannah

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="312" caption="Love Bytes Mittens -- click to go to the pattern page on Ravelry!"]Love Bytes Mittens -- click to go to the pattern page on Ravelry![/caption]

viernes, 9 de julio de 2010

Entree to Entrelac



Entree to Entrelac: A Build-as-You-Go, Modular Approach for Knitters

jueves, 8 de julio de 2010

Smooth as Silk

[caption id="attachment_450" align="aligncenter" width="426" caption="The Stella McCartney pre-Fall 2010 collection"]The Stella McCartney pre-Fall 2010 collection[/caption]

For her pre-Fall 2010 show, Stella McCartney not only pulled out the standard -- camel-colored wool coats -- but paired them, surprisingly, with metallic dresses, leggings and tops. While most of us tend to restrict our use of shine to the cocktail hour, there are a daring few who may want to re-create this look in a more wearable, comfortable way, with a knitted garment. What better color and texture palette to use than Malabrigo Silky? With an incredible drape and shine, this dk-weight yarn can prove more inspiring and versatile than ever. Some patterns to try include Coral, from the Amimono Knit Collection, or Coffee Tunic by Mira Ranki.

If you're feeling inspired, check out this color palette in Silky Merino for solids. It might also give you an interesting 'metallic' effect to layer similar colors next to each other in a patterned or fair isle piece!

[caption id="attachment_451" align="aligncenter" width="351" caption="Silky Merino in Tatami, Teal Feather, and Smoke"]Silky Merino in Tatami, Teal Feather, and Smoke[/caption]

Chau, Hannah

miércoles, 7 de julio de 2010

Highlight -- Knitter's Review of Twist

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="264" caption="Photo Property of Knitter's"]Photo Property of Knitters[/caption]

If you're as avid a knitter as I am, you'll be well aware of Knitters Review, the website that reviews products, yarns, and lots of knitting notions to see how they fare in different situations so that you can always read before you buy. They have a lot of wonderful reviews for all brands of yarn -- including many for Malabrigo, but recently I checked to see that they've added a review for Malabrigo Twist!

It was wonderful to see that the review was so favorable, and it's a real honor for us to have a yarn so well-loved in any knitter's opinion. But no need for me to wax poetic here - read it yourself! Knitter's Review, Malabrigo Twist.

Chau, Hannah

lunes, 5 de julio de 2010

New Patterns for Malabrigo

It's amazing how many new patterns designed in Malabrigo can pop up in just a week or two -- I did a pattern search today and found lots of new lovelies for you to look at! Click on the links below to find the pattern on Ravelry.

[caption id="attachment_443" align="aligncenter" width="436" caption="Click the links below to see the pattern page on Ravelry!"]Click the links below to see the pattern page on Ravelry![/caption]

1.Brattleboro Hat, 2. Seasons Shawlette, 3. Sokkene Jernverk (Ironwork Socks), 4. Broken Rib Cowl, 5. Infinite Loop6. Wicker Park Shawl7. Windrose Hat 8. Grace Capelet

Chau, Hannah

viernes, 2 de julio de 2010

Weekly Color Feature - Golden Sun

yellow mosaic

1. Lemon Drops, 2. Preserved Ginger, 3. shaelyn, 4. how to make baby food textile pattern, 5. Yellow Rose (yellow flower) - رز زرد - yelrose, 6. Peterborough Pidgeons, 7. Lattice - YIP 23:365, 8. Shi Bui Sock II

Feeling inspired? Try these colorways:

[caption id="attachment_439" align="aligncenter" width="424" caption="Chunky in Pollen and Sunset, Silky in Sand, Sock in Ochre, Twist in Sunset, Worsted in Frank Ochre, Lace in Cadmium and Sauterne"]Chunky in Pollen and Sunset, Silky in Sand, Sock in Ochre, Twist in Sunset, Worsted in Frank Ochre, Lace in Cadmium and Sauterne[/caption]

Chau, Hannah

Proof That No Matter How Bad It Is, Knitting Makes It Better

[caption id="attachment_434" align="aligncenter" width="396" caption="Comic courtesy of The Panopticon -- follow the link for more!"]Comic courtesy of The Panopticon -- follow the link for more![/caption]

The Panopticon has recently released a really hilarious Malabrigo and Twilight themed mash up! If you feel like a laugh this afternoon (at the loving expense of Twilight fans everywhere), check it out here!