A 2015 – 2017 Top 100 Knitting Blog!
Who remembers novelty yarn? Not all that long ago, eyelash yarn may have single handedly rejuvenated the knitting industry. Why was that?
Knitting is centuries old, but for the vast majority of that time it was a necessity. Women knit tens of thousands of socks for troops in WWII and were eager to drop it as soon as possible. Many of us learned from our grandmothers because our moms didn’t knit. Only the truly intrepid crafter knit through the 60’s and 70’s.
When you think about new technology you may not think knitting but that’s exactly what happened. Yarn was suddenly colorful and fun, it wasn’t scratchy and knitting was easy. Circular needles with smooth flexible cords became the norm and interchangeable tips were born. Knitting became a way to express creativity without a hint of drudgery remaining and everyone wanted to learn.
Novelty yarn was all the crazy in the mid-2000’s. Knitters bought scores of Trendsetter Eyelash yarn in a rainbow of bright colors and knit endless scarves that required only garter stitch. My LYS at that time was owned by a visionary designer with patterns published in Vogue Knitting. At the height of novelty yarn’s popularity, she stopped buying eyelash yarn, declaring it was just a phase and predicted knitters would soon turn to natural fibers like merino. To be honest, we all thought she was nuts. Turns out, she was right.
The yarns of the past several years are equally amazing, but their fiber content, softness and stitch definition is what has kept us enthralled and required that we up our game when it comes to our skills. As someone who focuses on techniques and their nuances it is certainly my mainstay. It’s hard to see the difference between k2tog and ssk in eyelash, let alone the matching benefits of the Showy Decrease.
Yarn Goes Big and Bold – Again
However, the pendulum is swinging again, as it inevitably does. I’ve started to see a new wave of yarn hit the store shelves with a touch of something extra. Thick and thin yarns with astounding color palettes benefiting from advances in dyeing technology.
It seems I am not immune to the lure of these vibrant yarns. I quickly knit up this loopy scarf made with Universal Yarns Bamboo Bloom Handpaints alternating with Berroco Folio. It’s a quick holiday gift knit and pure fun. I picked this color for its photographic punch, but there is a tonal white on gray skein I am itching to play with as well.
It will be interesting to see just how far that pesky pendulum keeps swinging.
In the meantime, I’ll still be plugging away at new techniques to share with you and enjoying a quick change of pace now and again knowing in either case, this is not my grandmother’s knitting.
If you’d like to add this project to your holiday attire or quick gift list you can download the pattern here.
The scarf uses one skein of the colorful bulky Bamboo Bloom and one ball of Berroco Folio. Links to these yarns are below. I used a neutral gray to help the Bloom blossom (sorry), but bright color Folio would be fun and the sparkle perfect for the holidays.
How about you? Did all your loved ones receive eyelash scarves as their 2006 holiday gift?