FAQ, frequently asked questions

There are about 5 FAQ that customers at shows ask me. I thought it might be useful to answer them here as it’s unlikely there will be any “real” shows this year for you to be able to ask in person.

Is this colour fast, will it fade?

The honest answer to this FAQ is yes. Anything made of natural fibre will fade eventually. Whether it is dyed with synthetic dyes or our lovely natural dyes, it will fade in UV light and with washing. Your favourite blue jeans will fade over time, as will furnishings, your wool coat and even leathers. Yarn dyed with natural dyes will fade faster, but I carefully swatch test each colour to assess whether it fades too quickly to be good enough for you. The swatch testing also checks for colour fastness, ie will it run in the wash. During the process of natural dyeing I rinse the yarns very thoroughly until the rinsing water runs clear, but some dye may still remain and be released by your washing detergent.

Chamomile Dye and yarn

How do I wash it?

If you wash your yarn projects by hand you will protect the stitches of the garment/project and prevent stretching it out of shape, or worse, felting it. Personally I prefer not to use superwash yarns because they are treated with environmentally unfriendly chemicals, but I understand they are ideal for children’s wool garments for ease of washing. Even so, I would only put them on a wool wash in the machine…..

What Size Needles do I need?

All our yarn is carefully labelled with a description of the fibre type, its weight and thickness, its average tension and the average needles to use to knit with it. Some patterns call for a larger or smaller needle, depending on the texture of the stitch, the details on the label are an average over stocking stitch. Some people knit tighter or looser than average, so you will need to adjust your needle size up or down accordingly.

Is this British Wool?

Where possible, we source our yarn from UK spinners and producers who use British fleeces. Some fibres like silk and cotton, cannot be produced in the UK, but in general all our wool fibres and Alpaca are British. The Merino comes from the Falklands, stretching a point I suppose, but still British. We are also very careful to ensure that our yarns are ethically and sustainably produced. Quality is not compromised for cost.

How Do I do That?

Did you know we have a You Tube Channel? I post lots of video clips on techniques, information and fun things for you. If you aren’t sure, for example, how to set up your solar dye pot, (a FAQ) check out our videos to see how. Not sure what kind of pot to use for your DIY Daylight Dye kit of the month? Have a look on You Tube Gorgeous Yarns. I also post any unusual stitch technique videos too which go with our patterns, the latest one is the Star Stitch which goes with the July free pattern in the kit.

Of course, if I haven’t answered your FAQ here, please contact me at gorgeousyarns@gmail.com and I’ll be happy to help. I will miss meeting you at the autumn shows, so it will be nice to “chat”, albeit by email.

Bye for now,

Caroline

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