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Blend no.1 — an Ysolda yarn!

March 02, 2016

“Soft enough to wear around your neck, and can you think of any way to get a cool undyed grey?”

In response to those questions John Arbon sent me an envelope of carded fibre. I twisted it between my fingers, grabbed a drop spindle and fell in love. Yes! Go ahead.

The result was the lace weight yarn I used in the Crockern Tor shawl from last year’s shawl club, yarns I’d promised would be exclusive to club members. But as I knit, and then wore, the shawl I started daydreaming. I wanted texture, cables, sweaters, hats…. more.

And here it is. That same luscious blend of fibre in a 3-ply, worsted spun sport weight. Not exclusive to anything, but spun in small batches. I’ve been working on some designs with the first batch for a while, and tripping over bags of it in the studio. We just got confirmation that we’ll have some of batch 2 available for Edinburgh Yarn Festival which means that I can stop hoarding this!

Worsted spun with 3 plies, Blend no.1 has a smooth, rounded structure that creates squishy, 3-dimensional cables and textured stitches. The subtle tonal variation and halo make minimalist garments equally beautiful.  

White Merino and Polwarth are organically farmed in the Falkland Islands where mulesing is not an issue. Zwartbles is a Dutch breed with unusually dark fibre, long legs and a distinctive white blaze, ours is grown close to the John Arbon mill in Exmoor. 

Blend no.1 blooms when wet into a cohesive fabric with a slight halo. The white and dark fibres blend into a subtly uneven grey with an appearance that’s closer to a marled sweatshirt fabric than a traditional heathered yarn. 

Rebecca recently got a chance to visit the John Arbon mill while they were working on the second batch of Blend no.1 and came back with these behind the scenes photos. 

Singles waiting to be twisted. 

Singles waiting to be twisted. 

Daisy uses a magical yarn joining device that helps them to avoid knots (I want one of those!)Daisy uses a magical yarn joining device that helps them to avoid knots (I want one of those!)

I’ve been working on a few designs using the yarn which will be released very soon including these mitts which are available in the Edinburgh Yarn Festival magazine. You can now also find the Inglis Mitts pattern on the website.


If you follow me on instagram you might have seen my rather slow progress on this sweater (I re-knit parts of the yoke 8 times!). Now it’s done I want to live in it! Now available as a digital pattern, and you can find the Polwarth sweater here.

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