Unplanned Peacock is proud to have many excellent crocheters using our yarn! In this blog post, a picture is worth a thousand words, so I'm going to share with you some of the skilled projects our customers have shared with us over the years. People have crocheted with Unplanned Peacock yarn in all weights from lace to super bulky.
Rohn Strong is a well known crochet designer who has designed several patterns with our yarn. Here are two of my favorites:
Rohn's Wynonna Mitts are an updated classic, using a soft color scheme, again in our Superwash Merino DK.
An amazing crafter who specializes in jewelry and fiber arts design, Michelle Stead is designing crochet patterns with her own unique style. Her latest is Dappled Sea Hooked. This delicate and airy piece only takes one skein of our decadent alpaca, silk, and cashmere Whisper Lite.
As a treat for my knitters, I'm giving away mini-skeins of Whisper Lite. Here's a small pattern that works well with these little skeins:
120 yards of Whisper Lite
I have made the decision to retire a vast majority of UPP's traditional colors. Never fear, BRAND NEW colorways are around the corner. Starting in January 2014, I will be dyeing limited edition colorways which will be available for six months. I am hoping this will keep things fresh and exciting for my customers!
So, without further ado, let me introduce the 2014 Spring Colors in their sketch form! I'll be dyeing samples all month, and putting the new colors up here and on Facebook, but here is a preview. These colors are inspired by plants and animals of the seashore.
I hope you enjoy them! The nice thing about this grouping is that all the all yarns should look good together, which will help in colorwork. All of the colors can be dyed on all of our yarns.
For those of you who haven't visited in person, I thought it would be nice to have a virtual sheep introduction - right before fall shearing, when the sheep are looking their best, except for being a little wet with morning dew! I have Icelandic sheep, which are a rare breed in the US and the only breed in Iceland. They come in a bunch of colors, and have a dual coat, with a long staple outer coat and a shorter staple inner coat. We sell our fleeces and fiber to spinners and felters here.
Icelandic fleece is especially suited to felting. This means if you are a spinner, and you are washing an Icelandic fleece, you need to be EXTRA careful to NEVER hit warm wet fleece with cold water or agitation. You will instantly felt it. This is a benefit if you are a felter, obviously. The wool will literally felt on the sheep, as often happens in the spring, after they are rained and snowed on all winter. Then, we shear off an Icelandic "Phelt" - big beautiful long wooled hunks of fake pelt. When these are washed, you can either use them in felting projects or as fake fur. If you are interested in these, contact me. They are a neat product from the sheep for the creative crafter.
But, I'll leave spinning and felting tips for later. If you have specific questions, leave them in the comments.
If you are interested in a particular fleece from the fall shearing, contact me.
Daisy and Dharma
Two of our Black and White girls
Black and white ewe
Bright and Alpha
Moorit grey horned ewe
Moorit Ewe (our oldest sheep!)
Firaga and surprise Guinea
Dusk and Aurora
White and Black Mouflon ewes
These aren't all of our sheep, just the ones who weren't feeling shy this morning. Hope you enjoyed their pretty faces!
First off, welcome, Holla Knitters, thanks so much for taking the trouble to visit my blog! Subscribers will all be getitng a copy of the wonderful pattern "The Crash" by Sarah Hurwitz.
The Crash out of Onyx Superwash Merino Worsted
If you aren't familiar with Unplanned Peacock Yarns, take a moment to learn about us. Today, I'd like to showcase some of my favorite projects I have seen that have been made with UPP. They will give you an idea about how the yarn knits up. Our colorways are dyed in such a way that pooling should be very minimal, and you should get an even distribution of color.
Fern Superwash Merino Worsted - notice the great color distribution!
On to the projects!
First off is Christy Straight's soft and elegant Haapsalu Shawl - named "The Elliott Shawl" in honor of her cat. I dyed this yarn to match her kitty's fur coat. I love doing custom work, especially when it is used in such a special project.
Haapsalu Shawl out of Slate Whisper Lace
Next is this crocheted afghan by Fran Stafford. She made it out of many different green tones of UPP Superwash Worsted. It's so pretty! The benefit of using hand dyed yarn that has as much color complexity as some of our colors is that you can do a relatively simple piece and it will turn out effortlessly gorgeous.
Afghan out of Superwash Merino Worsted
Jennifer Crow had some random skeins of UPP lying around, so she made this epically huge shawl - it is such an interesting shape and the color choices are wonderful!
designed by Karen Strauss, Forest Superwash Fingering Merino and Whippoorwill Peacock Sock
Next on the list of UPP awesomeness is Frosti Goodeman's shawl made out of Lagoon Peacock Sock. She thinks this shawl is too busy, but I love it.
Shawl in Lagoon Peacock Sock
One of the most accomplished knitters I know is Catherine Long. She knit this enormous Shetland shawl out of Whisper Lace. If you've done battle with even one skein of Whisper, you know it's a true marathon - and she used TWO! I love the way she did the colorwork in the border, it adds so much to an already heirloom project.
Shetland Shawl out of Blossom and Cream Whisper Lace
These are only a select few of the many amazing projects people have made. If you want to see more project pics of UPP yarn, check out our gallery or browse the back pages of our blog! If you make something, whether a basic garter stitch scarf or a tablecloth sized shawl, please send me pictures! Not only do I love seeing your work, but you might win Knitter of the Month and get a free skein of yarn!
Free Pattern Giveaway
Wait, there's more! As a thank you to the Holla Knitters, here's a free scarf pattern, done with any skein of Unplanned Peacock Fingering Weight Yarn. This will ONLY be available through the 20th. This pattern was originally done for our Yarn Club.
Basil Scarf Pattern
Jackie Murton has been a huge supporter of Unplanned Peacock over the last year, and it's past time she gets honored as Knitter of the Month!
She talks about her knitterly life: "Let's see... I started knitting in 1997 while I was pregnant with my first child. At that time I could only knit scarves. After my daughter came along, I put knitting aside for a while. Then in 2001 while I was carrying my twins, I was put on bed rest and picked up my kitting again to beat the boredom. That is when I learned to read a pattern and I knit their christening outfits. A dress for my daughter and a sweater and shorts/knickers for my son.
I began writing my own patterns last year when I realized I was constantly tweaking the patterns I saw in magazines. Especially changing pieced sweaters into seamless. That is when CRCjaxknits was born. My first published pattern (and my favorite) was my "Sunburst" hat, knit using UPP Diva Sock in Pumpkin.
UPP is still my favorite yarn to design with. It's beautiful colors and soft hand make it a joy to work with. Plus, it's durability helps it stand up to constant "frogging" that comes with the designing process."
Here are some of her designs, all of them are available here.
A Hat for All Seasons out of Botanical Twisty Aran (discontinued)
Bring Home Baby out of Waterlily Superwash Fingering Merino (discontinued)
Thanks so much to Jackie for her awesome support, designing with our yarns, providing FREE patterns, and writing patterns for our Fairy Tales Yarn Club! UPP couldn't do it without you!
If you are interested in becoming Knitter (Spinner, Crocheter, Weaver, Felter) of the month, send your finished UPP project pics to firstname.lastname@example.org. You may win a free skein of yarn!!
Jennifer is a very prolific knitter who has been a friend of UPP for years and years. She's helped in our booth, and you may have met her in Greensboro or Maryland. She's also spent time skeining yarn, and being a UPP cheerleader. She knits like the wind! She has been a past employee at yarn shops, and does test knitting for pattern designers.
Travelling Companion Shawl, designed by Karen Strauss, Forest Superwash Fingering Merino and Whippoorwill Peacock Sock
Baby Socks out of Quaker and Kiskadee Superwash Merino Fingering
Baby Socks out of Ultramarine and Poppy Peacock Sock
Socks out of Primrose Superwash Merino Fingering
Baby Hat out of Quaker Superwash DK
I've been remiss about running Knitter of the Month during spring festival season. I hope you all will forgive me! Without further ado, here we go for June! You can vote from now until Friday, midnight.
Sunburst Hat (designed by Jackie Murton) in Rose Diva Sock
Renee runs a darling little yarn shop in her parent's old farm house in Lewisburg, WV. Taking a trip to the Country Road Yarn House will reward the fiberista with gorgeous views and a nice selection of yarn (including Unplanned Peacock).
Lazy Katy (designed by Birgit Freyer) out of Maypole Superwash Fingering Merino
Barbara is an avid lace knitter, and she has made a lot of shawls out of Unplanned Peacock.
Travelling Companion Shawl, designed by Karen Strauss, Forest Superwash Fingering Merino and Whippoorwill Peacock Sock
Jennifer is an accomplished knitter who has helped Unplanned Peacock at shows. She's been a friend and supporter for years!
Time to Vote!
Interested in becoming Knitter or Crocheter or Spinner of the month? Upload your pictures onto our website, or email me photos! It's easy to do - just find the color of your yarn and upload it onto that page. You may win a prize!
I'm thrilled to death to be a part of the wonder that is the Holla Knits pattern club. Katie Canavan has written a pattern that is just perfect for hand dyed yarn. The beauty of this pattern is that while it looks stunning in tonal yarns, the more variegated yarns would be highlighted by the interesting stitch pattern.
Isn't it just perfect? Introducing the Julep Jacket.
For those of you who are new to our Unplanned Peacock Yarns, let me introduce myself - my name is Natasha, and I've been dyeing yarn for about 5 years now, and previous to that, I was a theater costumer. While I was working in the theater, I did a lot of costume crafts, which included a lot of dyeing and painting of fabric. When I learned to knit and spin, and became TOTALLY OBSESSED with fiber arts, I decided that dyeing yarn was a natural progression of my career. It allows me to be creative, messy, and best of all - people can make stuff with my stuff! It's a collaborative art form when the dyer meets the knitter (spinner/weaver/crocheter!) This partnership is made even better when patterns are designed especially for the yarn that's been dyed. It's an amazing feeling knowing that my work is being used to make heirloom and well-loved crafts.
Shawl knit by Jean Hogle out of UPP Chives Diva Sock
The number one question I am asked is "what's the deal with your name?"
When we first moved to our farm in Ferrum, VA, we had sheep that were happily eating the weeds in our yard. One day, I went out to tend to them, and a big elegant blue head poked up out of the weeds. We had been hearing this mournful cry every night, and even though I was an avid bird watcher, I had never heard one quite like it. Now the mystery was solved. The peacock was a male with a glorious tail. We named him Picasso, and he's stayed on the farm ever since. UPP was just a glimmer in my mind at that time, but when this peacock appeared, I thought the name "Unplanned Peacock Studio" was just the perfect mix of metaphor and fun.
My dyeing is a bit out of control. I can never quite tell what color I'll get, even through the best efforts of making it reproducible. It's a bit unplanned, which to me makes it more enjoyable. That element of beautiful chaos makes it interesting and challenging all at the same time.
Picasso, our mascot. He will be getting a girlfriend this year.
If you haven't knit with our yarns yet, be assured you will be getting the very highest quality wool yarns and fiber. The colorways are complex and typically non-pooling, because of my dyeing process. I dye with acid dyes, and the yarn is very colorfast. People have knit socks and sweaters that they have worn for years without durability issues. Because my colorways are very complex, it is very important that people buy the correct amount for a project at one time, as it is very difficult to exactly reproduce dyelots. When you have up to 5 colors flowing and mixing together on a skein of yarn, you get a stunning result, but if you try to get the identical result again, it's incredibly difficult. If you have any questions about the quality of our yarns, you can order a mini-skein to test out.
A bunch of our Silk Merino Laceweight
In fact, throughout the month of May, as a gift to our customers, we'll send you a free mini-skein with any order from our website!
Random sheep picture
Aries our Icelandic ram modeling a Honey Cowl out of Superwash Merino Worsted in Fuchsia
Tonya in her Forever Scarf out of UPP fingering in a one of a kind color way
Tonya is an amazing knitter. I've met her numerous times at fiber festivals and yarn shops in NC and she always shows me her amazing new projects! Tonya has been kind enough to contribute pictures to our site. Here's what she says about her knitting and crocheting life:
"My name is Tonya, I've been crocheting for about 20 years and knitting for about 10. I taught myself to crochet from a book when I was pregnant with my oldest son, who is now almost 20, a baby blanket that I still have. I always wanted to knit but ended up being a single mother of two boys with a full time job and not much time but I really loved the look of knitting, especially socks. In 2003 I came down with 'Cogan's Syndrome' leaving me completely deaf and bedridden for months. I got myself a book, a ball of sock yarn and some dpn's (this was before the day and age of 'magic loop') and swore at everything for about 2 days and finally produced a sock. (who starts knitting by learning socks from a book? I had no idea what I was doing!) I knitted socks like crazy, drawers full. For me, for the kids, for the neighbors, friends, socks, socks, socks. Then someone said to me 'why don't you knit other things?'. I didn't really have a good answer and that kind of prompted me to broaden my horizons and start knitting everything, also expanding my obsession. Now I knit everything, all the time. I'm only slightly deaf now (I have a cochlear implant), and not bedridden anymore. I just went back to school in January along with having another son, making for a total of 3, ranging in ages from 4 to almost 20. To say I'm busy would be an understatement but I always make sure I find a little time at least to knit every day and try to get in at least one good knitting day a week to keep my sanity. It is a dream to eventually play around with dying as well but where I live right now doesn't provide me with the area I need to explore that so I will settle for expanding my stash and knitting as fast as I possibly can. Feel free to add me or check out my projects on Ravelry: Tmarie2009. =)"
Here are some of Tonya's projects:
Socks out of Sun Conure
Socks out of Bluegrass
Midsummer Night's Socks out of Lime
Quincy Q Monster by Rebecca Danger out of Winter Peacock Sock