Thursday, February 11, 2010

What Is It About Sheep in Uruguay?

Maybe a year or so ago, the word Malabrigo popped up on my radar. I used my context clues to ascertain that this referred to a brand of yarn, though I'd never used it. Then I started hearing Malabrigo more and more. Had I tried it? Did I know the wonders of it? Could I believe how fabulous it was?

Well, no, no, and no. My lack of Malabrigo knowledge had nothing to do with purposeful avoidance. I'm just usually up to my ears in Noro or Manos del Uruguay, my personal choice for comfort yarns. But the whole Malagbrio thing crescendoed at Market, where now I heard the word constantly. Then, last week, I was taking a class and someone suggested I try Malabrigo for the glove project but, alas, there were only a few skeins in the whole store, and none in a color I wanted. I was assured more would be coming in soon, and just a couple of days Suzanne told me the shipment is on its way. So all you already-in-the-know Malabrigo fanatics can get ready to exhale.

Meanwhile, here's some sort-of-related news. We did just get in the Punta yarn. Like Manos and Malabrigo, Punta hails from Uruguay, leading me to wonder what is it about the sheep from this country? They must be super happy or something because for such a small place on the map, Uruguay seems to crank out an awful lot of much-loved yarn. So let's talk about the Punta, shall we? I spent quite a bit of time at the Punta booth at Market learning about the product. The yarn has been used by designers for decades. In 2006, the company started selling to shops so that you and I could have the pleasure of using the same stuff the big dogs use.

The new collection features a range of fiber content, from the 100% cotton African Summer line to the 100% merino Merisoft line. Along this spectrum, there are different blends, like the Merisock (95% superwash merino, 5% nylon), and the Mericash Thousand Colors (80% merino, 20% cashmere). But the best part? Colors. Tons and tons of colors, often many colors in each skein. Something I really dug about the booth was how they displayed this love of color-- think of that feeling you get when you visit the paint supply store and look at all those color cards in the rack-- pretty exciting, right?

So wait for the Malabrigo if you insist. But I double dare you to try the Punta. And if you need anymore inspiration than that, check out their website where you'll find a ton of free patterns. Here are some pictures of what just came in:

[African Summer above]

[Merikash above]

[Merisoft below]

[Thousand Colors below]

[Merisock below]

1 comment:

brenda said...

If you go to Uruguay to investigate, I'll go with you!