Figuring Out My Place in the Knitting World

When my son was a year old, I finally stopped working my Job. I worked from home, and with a medical resident for a husband, nursing, unsteady and pricey childcare (which sometimes did not stop virtual meeting attendees from hearing baby screams) and just general burn-burn-burnout, I decided enough was enough. After I stopped working my capital J Job to stay home full time with my son, it became pretty clear that I wasn’t planning on looking for a Real Job again. But now that he’s 2, I’m not so up to my eyeballs in life. I’m actually considering doing something MORE with my time and it’s really exciting to feel that way again – because let me tell you, I thought the feeling of barely treading water successfully wasn’t going to end.

I’ve said before that the knitting and fiber community is one of the most inclusive and encouraging that I know of. In it, I’ve found something that is entirely my own. It wasn’t thrust upon me and I’m not doing it for anyone but myself. At this point in my knitting journey, I’m considering where to go from here. I’d like to take this passionate hobby of mine and go more in a more career-oriented direction. I have more aspirations and ideas than fingers and toes, so it’s proving difficult to focus on one thing or even decide what I could focus on.

Pattern Designing – I’ve already dipped my toe into the pattern designing waters with a free little baby hat pattern that details how to achieve jogless stripes and a Game of Thrones-inspired shawl pattern. Patterns are really time-consuming to write (for me), but they are a really great way to express an idea that I need to get out of my head. And it’s nice passive income, should I be lucky enough to sell some copies! Designing is one thing I can do right now that doesn’t really cost me money. The cost of yarn to knit a sample is minimal (plus I either keep it or gift it), the time it takes to write and perfect a pattern doesn’t actively cost money, and it’s done during times when I couldn’t really be doing anything productive anyway. Waiting for inspiration to strike and getting in a fist-fight with impostor syndrome make it a bit of a slow process, but it at least feels like I’m doing something and contributing (since my kiddo is currently playing with buttons and in no way wants my interference).

Photography – There are definitely some skills I need to learn to up my game. I do like to do things properly and to seem professional. A lot of people in the knitting community communicate their ideas and designs through photography on Instagram. It’s a bit disheartening to lose followers because you’re pretty sure your pictures aren’t fancy enough. So I probably need to learn about photography, especially as I design more patterns.

Natural Dyeing – My ultimate goal is to have sheep raised by myself & my bff Renee whose wool we’ll have milled into yarn which we will then dye with plants we grew ourselves… but holy guacamole are there a lot of steps and dollars between here and there, so I’m not thinking about that just yet. What I am going to work on in the meantime is growing some dye plants in my yard to experiment with colors and techniques. Just for funsies.

Retailing Yarn – My big endeavor, possibly in a year or so, will be to start an online yarn retail shop. I know there are a lot of them, but I’m hoping mine will be unique in an inclusive way. There are a lot of people out there who, like me, are environmentally-conscious. Therefore, I’d like to carry many different types and brands of yarn all in one place that has an environmental advantage. Whether a patron is looking for non-superwash, local/domestic, plant-dyed, breed-specific yarn or wool from holistically managed sheep, I hope they’ll find what they want with me. This won’t be able to get off the ground for a while since I’ll need a significant amount of capital to get started, but I’m very much looking forward to this. I’m collecting a long list of brands to reach out to in the future, and I hope I get moral support from the fiber community :).

I have a lot on my mind about how I can make my hobby into a business, as you can see. For now, I’ll be working a little bit every day – selfish-knitting, writing patterns, playing with dye, figuring out What Is A Photography. And living. I’ll be doing that too.

New-to-Me Yarn Wish List for 2018

Using yarns that have been processed from sheep to skein in an environmentally-responsible way is becoming more and more important to me. I have gotten a good start on finding brands that exhibit this practice and that I like, but I know I need to branch out! I’ve used a lot of Quince & Co. as I’ve mentioned in a previous post. I love their yarn, and I’m looking for more yarn to love just as much!

Here is my list of brands I’d like to try this year. It’s helpful for me to see it laid out in list form, and maybe you can get some ideas too!

  • Blacker yarns – I really want to make socks with the mohair blends! Maybe Okanogan, a matching pair for husband and I? I just need to find a US supplier who isn’t out of stock!
  • Brooklyn Tweed – I can’t believe I haven’t used any yarns by Brooklyn Tweed yet. I do have a project in mind for their Shelter line, though – the R & R Hoodie by Tanis Lavallee. I already bought this pattern, actually, and I think this will get a whole lot of use :).
  • Blue Moon Fiber Arts – Seriously, I can come up with 4895 projects I could make with the plethora of colorways BMFA has. They have a lot of non-superwash yarn bases. I’ve got plans to make another (actually wearable this time) Crochet Pullover with the Cake DK base in Delirium.
  • Mountain Meadow Wool – I keep coming back to the website of this yarn company. And I get SO OVERWHELMED by the amount of yarn bases they have. I want to try all of them, but I don’t have a project in mind for any specific weight/drape/fiber of yarn. I’m going to make an effort to make something from one of their yarns this year. I had the opportunity last year to buy a sweater’s quantity at a seriously discounted price, but I passed it up because ugghhhhh so much regret.
  • O-Wool – I so so so need to try the environmentally-responsible washable wool from O-Wool. I’ve heard nothing but good things about how incredibly soft it is, and I can’t wait to come up with something to knit with it.
  • Pichinku – I already have a skein of Pichinku in my stash from when I supported Dana’s Kickstarter. I’m so impressed that the Peruvian women she works with are able to achieve such vibrant saturated colors only with plants native to the region. I need an extra-special project for this, but something small so that the garment’s weight doesn’t distort the baby alpaca. I’m hoping to have a reason to make something with this soon!
  • Sustainable Stitches – This yarn came as a surprise on my doorstep. Turns out, my wonderful cousin sent it to me as a thank-you for knitting her baby a wee bonnet with a puff on top. I’m so happy to have it. I think this and other DK-weight yarns from my stash are going to be included in a Camaro by Tanis Lavallee.
  • Swan’s Island – So, I’ll admit, I’ve used Swan’s Island’s yarn already before as I’ve outlined in my post about yarns I’ve used. I love it so much, I need to try every last base they sell. I also really want to visit them in Maine, but that’s another post. I already have a Zweig planned out in their Natural Colors Merino Fingering in Teal and Oyster. They also carry “EcoWash” yarns that have had an environmentally-responsible treatment to make them machine-washable that I’m very excited to try.
  • Tanis Fiber Arts – I sure do love to browse Tanis’s website at look at her yarns. She too has an environmentally-responsible washable wool called “Pure Wash”. The combination of this and her omgineedit colorways has put this on my list for a while. Although, up until now I’ve always balked at pressing the purchase button. I think I need to find something really perfect to deserve her yarn.

[PATTERN] Three-Eyed Raven

Winter is coming.

Well, winter came. Winter is here.

I am so excited to share this pattern with you all! This pattern ended up being the perfect homage to a very captivating character from Game of Thrones. For those of you who are Game of Thrones fans, I think you’ll love this as much as I do. I also sincerely hope this isn’t a spoiler to anyone, but Bran Stark becomes the next Three-Eyed Raven. He seems like he’s shaping up to be the character that the future of Westeros hinges upon in the rest of the series.

This beautiful pattern is a shawl that encapsulates three foundational aspects of what it means to be Bran Stark.

  1. Since he is from the North, being a Stark of Winterfell, he and his fellow Northerners wear fur cloaks. The warm natural tones and addition of a mohair blend suggest the furry warmth of the necessary skins he must wear to be the most senior male Stark in Winterfell.
  2. As the Three-Eyed Raven, he is connected to and channels his power through the Weirwood trees of the North and beyond The Wall. Throughout the shawl, branches of the Weirwood spread to connect the wolf-like Stark aspects and the etherial Three-Eyed Raven.
  3. Bran becomes the Raven itself. The lace in this shawl is called “Raven” which symbolizes the duties that Bran must take on. The lace pattern even looks like a raven’s skull.



Protect yourself from the frigid Northern cold and connect through the Weirwoods as the Three-Eyed Raven!

Buy the pattern from Ravelry here!

Enjoy! ❤ Larissa

Projects on My Needles – Dec 31, 2017

Happy New Year’s Eve! This will be my last post of 2017. I’ve done a lot of knitting this year, which is my favorite. I’m really lucky I had the opportunity to stop working and stay home full time with le kiddo. I’m working on four things at the moment, two of which are not new. Silly December has of course been busy and plenty of things have taken precedence over knitting projects. I was able to start two new things. The first of which was while I was waiting on the yarn to start the second! And truthfully, I can’t wait to work on it again, even if it’s low on my order of priorities.

As I mentioned in my previous WIP update, I’m still working on the Cloud Cover cardigan. This is one of the two non-new projects still chilling on my needles. I really can’t wait to finish it, but it’s taking a back seat at the moment. But ohhh it’s going to be so fuzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzyyyyyyyyy ❤ ❤ <3.

Pattern: Cloud Cover by Heidi Kirrmaier
Yarn: Quince & Co. Sparrow in Birch held together with Plymouth Yarn Kid Gloss Hand Dyed in Ivory
Ravelry Project Page: Icy Blue Fuzz

The second non-new project is my Burberry Socks. I’m nearly done, I just have to actually put in the rows. These were something that I started when I was awaiting yarn for another project, and I really only work on them when I need to do something with my hands but don’t want a project that I need to count or keep track of anything. I was going to knit these until the yarn ran out, but I think if I do that at this point, they’ll come up to my knees. I’m already 4+ inches above the heel and I have a ton of yarn left. So I’ll just knit to a nice happy height and use the rest maybe in a scrappy sock, or socks for Scottie, or somethin? else? I do really want to wear these, but I keep forcing deadlines upon myself! Soon, my pretties.

Pattern: Smooth Operator Sock by Susan B. Anderson
Judy’s Magic Cast On
Yarn: Turtlepurl Yarns in Burberry
Ravelry Project Page: Burberry Socks

Ohhhh how I love this third project. I started it while I was waiting for the yarn for my fourth project below because I’ve had this yarn since September and it’s been burning a hole through my yarn shelf. I’m so glad I started it, it’s so damn gorgeous. The yarn is a single ply 70% Merino, 30% Silk fingering weight. Although it made me insane to wind it for some reason, I will never get sick of knitting with it. The colors are bonkers gorgeous and it’s so smooth and luscious to knit with. This pattern is amazing too. For such a simple pattern and omg it’s FREE you guys, the results are pretty unparalleled. I can’t wait until there’s nothing urgent for me to work on so I can pick this back up. If I knew how to insert cartoon heart bubbles here, I would.

Pattern: Stormy Sky Shawl by Life Is Cozy
Yarn: Manos del Uruguay Fino in Birdcage
Ravelry Project Page: Birdcage Shawl

And lastly, my 4th project in progress. Oh this project is taking a lot out of me. I’m nearly done with the knitting, as is determined by my yarn left. I sure hope this doesn’t turn into a game of yarn chicken, because I’ll have to amend the yardage needed and I’ve already had to edit how I wanted it to turn out due to the yarn gobbling that occurs on the later rows of knitting a shawl. I’m a total n00b to pattern writing, so I’m trying to make this as intuitive and easy-to-follow as I can, but with all new things, there is a learning curve. As I mentioned in my last project update, this is a pattern I’m self-drafting, and I hope to release it before the end of January 2018. It’s an homage, a love story, and a poem to a character in a well-known book/TV series and I sincerely hope fans will be as inspired as I was to make this.

Pattern: To be announced by me!
Yarn: KnitPicks Gloss in Timber held together with Plymouth Yarns Kid Gloss in Brown
Ravelry Project Page: Still Not Telling the Name!

That’s what’s going on with me! I, of course, have a queue the length of the Nile that is now including sewing projects and a mix of things to knit from patterns and patterns to write myself. I’ve got big hopes for a bountiful 2018. Have a neat New Year’s Eve, get an Uber, kick the shit out of 2018. Love you bye.

Knit Gift Giving

Gift giving around the holidays can be kind of a sticky wicket for someone who knits. Some may expect you to knit a sweater for everyone you know every year, and others literally dread if you’re going to burden them with some handknit nonsense they’ll never wear. I did crochet practically everyone a hat or ear warmer one year, and I’m pretty sure I’m the only one using mine. Having knit-worthy recipients is quite a special treat.

In the last year I’ve implemented, when I can, gifting the intention of a handknit item. For three recipients so far, I’ve told them I’d like to knit them a pair of socks and that they could choose the pattern and yarn so that they will have totally personalized one-of-a-kind socks.

Alda Road Socks for Denise
Ribbed Socks for Brian
Samwise Socks for Eileen

This was a lot of fun to bombard the recipient with choices (sorry guys) and see where their own creativity takes them. I’ll definitely continue to do this method of gift-giving in the future if I’m feeling up to it. If you’re panicking over not having time to knit an item for someone who you know would appreciate it, I highly recommend gifting the intention of a knitted item!

Another avenue I’m exploring for gift-giving now is pattern design. I’ve finally gifted the shawl below to its recipient (hi Denise!), so I can talk about it now :). I’ve got a shawl design in the works, but before it was completely solidified, I had a lot of ideas to work out. I was using several shades of purple-ish leftover yarn to try my shawl ideas out, but I knew I didn’t want this lavender yarn to be the color of my official pattern sample, so I just kept going when I came across an idea that I liked better than what I had already knit. In general I’m a “keep knitting, it’s fine” rather than a “frog it and fix it” kinda lass.

That’s me ^. I’m in my reindeer sweater official December uniform.
What up lumberjack Santa?
Aww, all ready to be gifted <3.

The official design for this shawl is well underway, and I can’t wait to show it to you all. Let’s just say, Game of Thrones fans are going to love it super hard.

I have several other ideas to work out in pattern writing. Whether it takes 1 iteration or several, I think instead of struggling to find the perfect pattern to make for a recipient, I’ll knit my pattern samples with my friendsies in mind. I will say, though, if I knock it out of the park on the first try, and it’s perfect for me, I’m keeping it. No shame in my game.

Hippy Nonsense

I’m going to reveal to you a totally-secret secret. Are you ready? It’s going to be a shocker. I’m a bit of a hippy. I’ll wait until you collect yourself. Good? Good.

The hippy nonsense runs deep in my blood, even if on the surface I look like a total normie. I don’t work on a farm like my BFF (hi Nae!), nor do I smell completely of patchouli (only a little, it’s in my soap, what do you want from me). However, there are a lot of aspects of my life that I’ve brought back to basics, removed technology from, or have a heightened sense of connection to. I live in the modern world, and I quite like living in a house and driving a car and using a smart phone, so I’m not trying to walk into the treeline and never look back. But for a while I haven’t been able to shake the sense that in some ways, technology has gone a wee bit too far and done us a disservice. In small ways through living my life I hope to make informed choices that don’t make the world worse, or maybe even make it better in the long run.

  1. I met all my meat – I started trying to eat in a more ancestral manner years ago, and it’s taken a while to get into a groove with it. One of the aspects I’m most proud of is our meat sourcing. The meat that our family eats has all come from within an hour’s drive, I’ve met most of the animals and can vouch for the environment in which they were raised (grass-fed beef and pastured pork & chicken), and I know the people in the process of it all. Like many, I’m appalled by the factory farms in our country. But I can’t in good conscience eliminate meat from our diet for a few reasons. Meat is nutrient dense and healthy (read about the science & such here), and it’s not something that can be easily substituted. And possibly more importantly, opting out of the system IN NO WAY helps to fix it. For everything we buy, we are voting with our money. I choose to vote for local, ethically & sustainably raised meat by people I trust. And I only drove one county over to pick it up.
  2. I make my cats’ food – Before I even adopted our first cat Kelly, I was elbow deep in research about the proper diet for cats. Probably embarrassingly, I got the idea from hearing Rachel Ray talk about how she would cook her dog a side of food when she prepared dinner. Before then, I never gave a second thought to Dog Food or Cat Food. I learned a lot of information about the nature and diet of cats from and So, when Kelly came home with us in 2011, we slowly introduced the food I had cooked for her using the recipe I found. These days, she and the two other cats we’ve subsequently adopted Minka (whom we call Weena, don’t worry about it) and George are healthy, shiny, non-stinky, well-hydrated, great at calculus, do our taxes… jk. Anywho, I love them, they say hi.
  3. Skincare – Not long after I started removing trash from my food supply, I started examining my skincare product choices. I’ve had dry and crappy skin my entire life, and I definitely used to believe that I needed the power of chemists to cure my skin of its hydrocortisone or benzoyl peroxide deficiency. It’s become clear since then that my lifestyle was largely the culprit – I have an autoimmune skin condition called herpetiformis dertmatitis. Basically, I get rashy skin from gluten, so TAKE THAT FARTWADS, IT’S NOT A FAD. For a while, I largely used apple cider vinegar, baking soda and coconut oil for practically everything. While mostly effective for things like washing your hair, I’ve since upgraded to using more ingredients. I make my own face & body lotion, lotion for my son, and remineralizing tooth powder. I use shampoo and makeup from a company called 100% Pure. There are other great companies for non-straight-up-trash skincare like Beauty Counter, Primally Pure and Primal Life Organics (to name a few – there are many more!). Anyway, what I’m trying to say is that I haven’t been to a dermatologist since high school, and I don’t feel like I need to wear makeup to go to the grocery store. And put fat on your face. 🙂
  4. Cleaning products – While most people don’t generally worry about the ingredients in their cleaning products because it’s neither ingested nor applied topically to anyone, there are still a lot of concerns I have with common household cleaners. I don’t super duper want to poison my cats or kid, so I’ve been transitioning all of our products to things that would be non-lethal if any of the above licked them. This used to be another place where I used vinegar and baking soda for practically everything, but nature and technology working together have come a long way in the last 5 years. I use things for laundry ranging from natural to better-than-most. For a while I used Branch Basics until I ran out 😦 , then used BioKleen for a while. I needed something with a stronger detergent power for cloth diaper cleaning, so I opted to use Kirkland’s Environmentally Responsible detergent for those. And, yes, I do still use white vinegar as a fabric softener rinse thing. I don’t use dryer sheets, but rather opt for putting essential oils on wool balls. Smells nice, man. For general cleaning, I use a diluted liquid Dr. Bronner’s solution along with vinegar to clean glass – it works wonders with a squeegee, Windex is gross. I also have an enzyme cleaner called BacOut also by BioKleen which I add to laundry, especially cloth diapers. I have it in a spray bottle, too, for messes like food/drink spills in the carpet or stinky peepee from the aforementioned spoiled cats. I also buy nontoxic dish soap, dishwasher detergent and ant spray. It all counts.
  5. Cloth diapering – Since a few days after my kiddo was born, he’s been mostly in cloth diapers. I wasn’t keen to throw 10 stinky plastic and whatever else sacks into a landfill every day. I used to work from home and now I stay at home with him (he’s 2 now), so it’s not a big deal for me to do a load of diaper laundry every other day and to dispose of doodoos down the toilet. I use the laundry solutions mentioned above and it’s just part of our daily life. However, if I had to do it all over again, I’m not sure if I’d choose cloth diapers. There are a lot of brands that are better for the environment, like Seventh Generation. Cloth diapers may be a little too bulky and stiff for babies to get the best range of motion when they’re learning to move, and I honestly can’t say whether the manufacturing of and the daily maintenance of cloth diapers is more or less costly, both in money and to the environment – especially when compared to environmentally-friendly brands of disposables. That said, my 2 year old is in cloth diapers approximately 75% of the time and disposables the other 25%. He wears disposables when we’re on an outing, to his daycare 1 day a week, to his gym class once a week, and overnight. Whether this will prove to be the best choice in the long run remains to be seen, but I do still feel like it’s a bit of a hippy thing to do!
  6. Clothing – Buying clothing is a challenge for me. I never gave the clothing industry a second thought until being exposed to Katy Bowman’s work. There is a lot of unseen labor going into our clothes, and most of it is not something I would have endorsed had I known about it. Katy has written a wonderful post about eco-friendly clothes, and I promise it’s a great read dense with things that will enlighten you. So far what I’ve taken from this is to shop for clothes at thrift stores, online consignment websites, swap things with people in your community, source companies who have some set of morals and ethics that you agree with, and to make your own clothes. I’ve done some of these things, but I find it immeasurably difficult. For example, I just bought my 2 year old a winter coat from the store because I couldn’t find anything adequate in thrift stores. I’m happy with the coat, but I have no idea under what conditions it was made. Obviously, I’m knitting sweaters and socks and such, which I’ll talk about below. But I’d REALLY like to get into sewing clothes. And not just silly dresses that look like they’re from the 50s. I want to sew underpants and leggings and a zip up hoodie. But ohhhhh the fabric. This goes right back to the sourcing issue. Socially and environmentally friendly fabric is available, though scarce and HOLY EXPENSIVE. The clothing category is somewhere that I anticipate the most growth in my hippy nonsense success, but for now, it’s basically a list of things I need to figure out how to do.
  7. Knitting – I don’t think my purpose when I learned how to knit was to save the world, but my relaxing hobby and creative conquest is morphing into fixing global warming single-handedly. Well, probably more hands than mine will be needed, just let me be hyperbolic. I’ve outlined in two other posts how I choose yarn to work with and the concessions I’m currently making to make sure I don’t go bonkers restricting myself. Knitting is so damn fun with the colors and patterns and the kindest and most supportive community of any out there. I’m beyond thrilled to find a purpose tangential to the fun. Through knitting, and many of my other quests to bring things back to the Earth, I discovered that what I want to do is to support and add to the fiber animals being raised in a way that will regenerate the fertility of the soil, sequestering carbon. This plan will take a while to come to fruition (again hi Nae!!), but I don’t think I’ll be frustrated in the meantime in this knitting community <3.

This list may not be all-encompassing for the ways I’m trying to live the modern hippy lifestyle, but I for sure hope to extend the list as time goes on. Okay, that was a lot of typing, I’ve got a cardigan to knit! Ttyl.

My Current Concessions

As I’ve noted in a previous post, I try to make informed decisions when choosing yarn to buy. The broad categories are fiber type, treatment of the fibers (and everything surrounding their production), country of origin, and how it was dyed. In an ideal world, every strand of yarn would be made from the best quality natural materials, under the best circumstances by somebody I personally know, and dyed with plants/natural materials (and maybe some fairy dust).

Where I concede for whether the materials are natural plant or animal usually falls under the category of performance. At the moment, I’m letting myself buy whatever sock yarn I want, which is a good example of where a synthetic fiber (Nylon) is used to increase the strength and durability of the sock. Nobody wants to spend weeks (or days, idk how fast you knit, ya speed demon) knitting socks only to have holes in them after only a few hours of wear. If you want a certain property in your yarn, but don’t want to fork over a mortgage payment, synthetic fibers are going to make it less expensive and be a lot easier to find.

If you know anything about me, you know that I don’t like to buy superwash wool yarn. The fact that the process makes the wool less woolly bothers me a lot less than the means in which it gets to that state. Yes, the ability to throw your knits in the laundry with the rest of your clothes without the risk of ruining a hard-earned garment is very convenient. However, I’d much rather spend a few minutes a week handwashing my knits for the peace of mind that I didn’t contribute to the descaling and polymer coating process of superwash yarns that is not exactly environmentally friendly. The concession here is, again, the sock yarn. It is very hard to find non-superwash sock yarn, folks. And harder still to find non-superwash sock yarn that is dyed omg-so-cute-and-pretty-I-need-it. While I really like neutrals for my wardrobe garments, socks can be SO FUN. Also, when I’m knitting a garment for somebody who does not live in my house and over whose laundry I have no control (a sweater for my cousin’s 4 year old daughter for example!), I always use superwash yarn. There are yarn companies who have managed to find a means of procuring washable yarn that is processed in an environmentally friendly way (which is another post altogether) and this is always my choice if I can afford it.

The fact that I can drive 3 minutes to my local Target and buy literally anything I could need and a whole ton of crap I didn’t know I wanted is pretty awesome on the surface. But when you think all the way upstream of where the raw materials came from and whose hands made it, it can be a less romantic story and a lot less local. It’s a monumentally baby-step process, but I’m trying more and more to know who – the actual person – the items in my life came from. Not only has this ideal stocked my meat freezer with animals I’ve met, this has also led me to seek out yarn companies based in the USA and whose yarn materials originate domestically as well. For me, this is the easiest way to know whether the sheep have been raised and handled humanely, that the people who work for that company are compensated fairly, and that all of the business standards are at least up to whichever governing body controls them in the United States. It’s also important to mention that the more local you buy an item – and the more local its components – the less fuel is used to ship it to you, the presumed end user. But this is not to say that every US yarn company is infallible, so this is where my concession comes in. Maybe I’ll support a local indie dyer, my local yarn shop, or a US-based retailer, as well as international yarn suppliers who I know to be doing right by the process. I waver about whether it’s more important to support American people or good practices anywhere. I don’t know the answer to that question, which is why the baby steps may walk in circles sometimes.

The way yarn is dyed is kind of an anomaly to me. I tried to dye yarn once with things I found in my backyard. I kind of followed instructions, but my yarn just came out looking dirty. I have almost no constrictions on buying yarn based on the way it’s dyed. However, if a yarn is promoted to be dyed with plants or using non-toxic dye, I may see what I can do to prioritize it, but that’s almost a novelty reason at this point. From what measly research I’ve done, I know there are heavy metal-free versions of wool dye, which must mean that all of the other ones contain at least some amount of these compounds. I have no idea if huge companies dye their yarn with different materials than indie dyers. And I know that for most plant dyes to actually stick to the yarn, a mordant must be used, and I’m 100% unsure whether the mordant is environmentally friendly. It’s possible that there’s a dose-response curve leaning to safety or otherwise for all dyes. I don’t really know whether the manufacturing process of any kind of dyeing materials is toxic, and to what portion of the environment. What I do know is that I like undyed fibers, and the rest are a big hunko chunko research away from being understood by me.

All of that being said, I’m looking forward to each new-to-me brand of yarn I try out in the future. It will be a learning experience as well as funsies knitting times.