No, this is not a post about those (I imagine) beautiful islands. While ago, I bought some Shetland wool on cone and I’ve been eager to play with it since. Finally, my vintage ball winder arrived, so I set out this weekend to make some yarn cakes… yummy.

Shetland yarn cakes and cones, close up

Shetland yarn cakes and cones A small part of the cakes produced so far… 

I made a very little swatch with double strands, just for the washing test. It had to be small: using 2mm needles, work progresses very slowly (and I’m already no fast knitter!).

In the beginning I was a bit worried because this wool is a rather fine 2ply and also had a fairly rough feel. I heard from other people that wool on cones is oiled and usually blooms once washed, so I was hopeful that this would have been the case. Indeed, it was so, to my joy. After gently washing it with washing up detergent, it turned into a fluffy, soft wool. Absolutely beau-ti-ful.

Swatch before washing The swatch before washing

Swatch after washing …and after washing

Yarn comparison: before (top) vs. after (bottom) Yarn comparison: before (top) vs. after (bottom)

I had in mind to use my Shetland wool for swatching patterns I created inspired by some Donegal fabrics seen not long ago – just wasn’t sure it would turn out fine. Now I’m relieved to see such a beautiful swatch.

I love my old Toyota ball winder (made in Japan) and the Shetland wool in all those shades… I can’t wait to find some time to play with it. In fact, right now, I wish I had nothing else to attend to. Do you also get such a feeling?

Vintage Toyota ball winder in action

22 thoughts on “Shetland

  1. ScrapAndSalvage says:

    wow. that wool IS beautiful!! and it looks so soft! that purple is incredible. and congrats on getting your vintage ball winder. sounds like that makes you LEGIT!!! i can see you sitting at home winding all day long now. ha. 😀

    • itwasjudith says:

      the problem is, i can see myself doing that too… but that’d be no good, as i should really study for my exams, at least during the week! thanks for the support 🙂
      i keep thinking of all those (many more) beautiful shades of wool sitting in the living room and waiting to play with someone….

  2. maureen15 says:

    What an awesome collection of colors! That yarn will make some incredibly beautiful things.

    • itwasjudith says:

      Thanks! I hope it will… at least I won’t be able to put the blame on the yarn 😉 I got many more shades, as I thought to try a few different colour schemes

  3. ro848 says:

    What beautiful colors! I bought 3 lbs of Shetland top for spinning awhile back. I am perfecting my spinning skills on a smaller lot of less loved fiber right now. But I have visions of spinning up my shetland some day and dyeing it with some natural dyes and making a yummy sweater coat. Thank you for the inspiration!

    • itwasjudith says:

      Thank you! I look forward to seeing the wool once you get to spin it… what shades are the tops? I’ve not yet tried spinning but it does sound to be a fascinating activity 🙂

  4. HKnits says:

    omgosh, that wool looks so cozy. I like the before and after pics. 🙂 _heather

  5. anelim says:

    beautiful colour palette (I happen to be right just now in a talk about young women and weaving in Europe and China in 17-19 Century!)

    • itwasjudith says:

      weaving sounds fascinating! i love fabrics and their textures, in fact i drawn some colourwork patterns (that’s were colours are alternated in knitting, so it creates a pattern) inspired by woven fabrics… was the talk to do with your work research?

  6. […] contained some Jamieson and Smith Shetland yarn, some Shetland wool on cone that I mentioned in another post, and some circular 2mm needles in 20, 30 and 40 cm. Now I’d only need an app to keep track of […]

  7. Curls & Q says:

    Q – Great colors! Super buy.

  8. […] Shetland 2-ply 100% wool in shades purple, grey, midnight or flintstone blue, a fine 1/9nm yarn that gives ca. 900 metres per 100 grams. You can choose all in one colour or some of each shade. The yarn comes from cone and is oiled but blooms once hand-washed. The total weight will be circa 300 grams (approx. 6 yarn cakes) and will be winded up in yarn cakes, either single or multi-stranded (that is, simply winded up, no plying) to your choice. You can read more about this yarn in my previous post Shetland […]

  9. Pia says:

    Shetland fiber is really nice to spin too.

  10. itwasjudith says:

    just waiting for an opportunity, i.e. to meet someone who spins already 🙂 i know there are plenty of videos about it online but it feels that seeing it in person would be even better!
    have a lovely weekend 🙂

  11. […] also changed to a shade that I prefer – a fairly vibrant purple, which you may remember from my previous post on Shetland yarns. Changing the weight of the yarn and the size of the needles, I slightly modified the pattern by […]

  12. […] Shetland yarn I’m using is 100% Shetland 2-ply wool, used double stranded, and seems to have a different look from that […]

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