A few weeks ago, Eleanor of Solstice Yarns very kindly sent me a skein of her gorgeous hand dyed yarn as a giveaway for the podcast. What with Woolfest and other things, there has been a lot going on and I wanted to wait until I had time to properly talk about Solstice Yarns and let you see this skein of yarny pleasure. Its been waiting patiently in my podcasting corner but now its ready for the spotlight to shine…
And here it is in all its glory – the Dreams can come true colourway on Eleanor’s Sea spiral sock base (BFL and nylon).
I have to admit that I don’t know very much about Solstice Yarns, other than its been established for several years and Eleanor, the independent dyer responsible is truly independent. She works from her home near Bradford in West Yorkshire and dyes up small batches of the most exquisite yarns and colourways.
She is inspired by natural colours and the magic of the seasons, particularly as see on the west Cumbrian coast where she grew up. I read on her blog that she manages to get back there every year for a couple of weeks and visits Cockermouth around the time of Woolfest. I didn’t see a Solstice Yarns stand there this year but I understand from looking at her blog that often she goes Woolfesting as a spectactor, not as a stall holder. I am sure that I’ve seen her stand at Yarndale though, so I hope that she will be there this year so that we can meet up and say hello in person.
I can understand why a small-scale dyer would find it hard to do many of these shows in any year. The first morning at both shows is incredibly busy and although Woolfest wasn’t as busy as I expected in the afternoon, there were still plenty of people around hungry for yarn. Actually dyeing enough to meet the demand over 2 full days would be quite a feat and the cost of attending, including travelling and staying over means that there is no point going unless you have enough yarns to sell over the entire event. That would be a huge number of skeins…
Solstice Yarns on Etsy
Eleanor uses her blog to preview and post pictures of her latest yarns and these are available for sale in her Etsy shop. I think her updates tend to be on Wednesdays, but maybe not every week. I really love the way that she explains what inspired her for individual colourways and the names that she gives the yarns make them even more yummy and desirable.
She also uses quite a range of fibres and weights of yarns, mainly the finer weights. Here are just a few of the yarns she currently has in the shop to drool over…
This one is Sailboat in the moonlight – that’s the colourway name – and its on a base of blue faced Leicester and nylon which Eleanor calls her Sea Spiral sock yarn. You can see what I mean about the names! I like the way that she shows the yarn skeined up and also laid out so that you can get a much better idea of how the yarn will work up whether you decide to knit with it or crochet.
This colourway is Foxglove and it captures a bright pink foxglove flower perfectly. This is on Eleanor’s Changeling base, which is 67% silk, 23% kid mohair and 10% nylon.
And this beauty is Cosmic clouds and its on the Isadora base, which is 100% ultrafine, laceweight alpaca.
To enter the Solstice Yarns giveaway, all you need to do is to be a subscriber to my YouTube Channel Crafternoon Treats. I’ll be picking the winner and announcing it in Episode 13, which will be published at the end of this week.