Pattern Roll Call: Perfect for Laceweight

Did you hear that almighty THUD the other week?  That was me, hitting the floor when I discovered that… wait for it…  the Yarn Harlot, Stephanie Pearl-McPhee,  was knitting with SpaceCadet laceweight yarn.  Not just knitting with it, she found herself actually being called by the colour, and I honestly don’t think a dyer could hope for any higher praise than that!

The second thud — you heard that one too, right?  That was me when all my laceweight sold out in what seemed like only minutes.  It was crazy to see the awesome power of the Yarn Harlot”s influence!  But also so cool because I love these laceweights and it was exciting to see them take center stage at last.

SpaceCadet Creations Laceweight yarn for knitting or crochet, in Honey (this is what the Yarn Harlot is knitting!)

Stephanie chose to knit Omelet, a beautiful and intricate lace shawl.  It was a great choice for the yarn — and it’s exactly what most people think of first when they pick up of skein of laceweight yarn.  But I also know that a lot of people end up putting that skein right back down again, because lace like that can be really intimidating.

So I wanted to show you a beautiful alternative: this is Mythos by Laura Nelkin and, knit in a laceweight yarn, it is the most perfect light summer cardigan to slip on whenever the evening brings the slightest chill. Laura Nelkin's Mythos cardigan

Mythos is one of the samples we take to our trunk shows and it’s amazing how almost everyone falls in love with it on the spot.  It can be knit in either a fingering yarn or, as shown here, a laceweight yarn held double.  And with simple stitchwork and straightforward shaping, it’s a really appealing way to use those gorgeous laceweights that sometimes seem so inaccessible.  What could be better for laid-back, lazy summer knitting?

Laura Nelkin's Mythos, knit with laceweight yarn

Shop Update!

I’ve been busy dyeing to get those laceweights back in the shop! So, here’s the first batch — some of the 100% Merino that the Yarn Harlot has been knitting, and some of the gorgeous Silk and Merino Luna Laceweight — all in those rich, gently undulating colourways that are perfect for these delicate yarns.  Click here to see them!

Shop Update! Click Here to see the Shop Update of new SpaceCadet Creations yarns for knitting and crochet

Softness Radiates from the Screen

New yarns in the shop are always exciting.  But not nearly as exciting as those yarns are in person — holding them in my hands, they are simply sooo much better than in the pictures.  How I wish you could just reach into this blog post and feel the softness, squeeze the smooshiness.  They are gorgeous!

But since you can’t, pictures will just have to do!  Have a look:

Clockwise from top left: Luna Laceweight in Calm Words, Stella Fingering Weight in City Park, Celeste Fingering Weight in Precise, Celeste Fingering Weight in Spluttermuck, Luna Laceweight in Old Money, Luna Laceweight in True Love’s Aura.

Now, I know it’s tempting but…  no, wait! No, don’t stroke the screen!  You’ll leave fingerprints!!!

Scenes from a Fiber Life: Laceweight NeverEnding

With great beauty comes… great danger? Great sacrifice?  We all know that laceweight yarns are beautiful — there’s something inherent in its delicacy, and the luxury of its fibers, and the way it soaks up colour.  Laceweight is beautiful.

And dangerous, as I recently found out.  But sacrifice?  The beauty of laceweight requires sacrifice?  Not for you, dear readers, but it does for me.  Let’s talk about my arms.

My arms are going to fall off.  They ache, they’re sore.  And as much as my eyes love laceweight, my arms hate it.  At 1300 wonderful, delicate, luxurious yards per 100g, it takes a loooooong time to reskein.  I have to sit and turn that skein winder round and round and round and round…

When the dyed skein goes on the swift, it really doesn’t look much different from any other skein.  My arms are blissfully ignorant of what’s about to happen.



But after a few minutes of winding, when my arm is expecting the job to be half done, I look and find there’s only wee bit of yarn on the skein winder…


And so I keep winding.  Round and round and round and round…


And after what seems like forever, I look up and…

.the swift looks as full as it ever was!  HOW can that be?!?

My arms are not happy with me.  My arms are burning and fed up and ready to quit.  It takes some convincing to get them to keep going.


But after a long, long time, the skein winder starts to look lovely and full like this…


And the swift finally starts to look a bit emptier…!


And then just as my arms get to the point where they are ready to fall right off, we reach the end.


And then it’s done.  And it’s gorgeous.  And I hold the finished skein in my hand and look at how all the colours blend together gently and I am in love!  Laceweight is worth it, I tell myself.


Until I lay that skein aside, and pick up the next one and start to arrange it on the swift and my arms realise what’s happening… and they don’t like it.  They don’t like it one bit.

The Dangers of Luna Laceweight

So, let’s say I was holding out a skein of yarn to you — beautiful, light, airy yarn, with a slight halo that made the softness just call out to you.   And let’s say that, as I held it out to you, I said, almost in a whisper, “It’s laceweight, a two-ply of silk and merino…”  As you reached out to touch it, what would be the first thoughts that came into your mind?  Would you be thinking strength?  Would you be thinking red-hot?  How about razor sharp?  No?  Those words wouldn’t be what popped into your mind?  Huh.  Me neither.

I’ve been dyeing the new laceweight yarn that will be going in the shop this week.  It’s called Luna and it’s everything that laceweight ought to be: delicate, soft, luxurious, stunningly beautiful.  With 20% silk blended into 80% superfine merino, it feels divine against the skin — the kind of yarn you just can’t stop touching.  Oh, and it takes colour like a dream.

So far, so good.

It was when I was reskeining the dyed yarn that everything changed.  I was turning the skein winder with my right hand and gently guiding the yarn with my left…  I had the skein winder going at a good clip because, at 1300 yards per skein, it makes for very tired arms if it goes too slowly.  So, we’re going along at a good pace, this yarn and me, when I realised my left hand is starting to hurt…  The space between my thumb and my index finger is really starting to burn.  So I moved my hand and rolled the yarn up my finger a bit and…  moments later, that spot is red-hot too.  This yarn is just so thin and going at such a pace that it was actually cutting into my skin!

So I looked about for something to hold it with — an oven glove would be ideal — and spotted a plastic coat hanger  which will do the trick nicely.  Arranging the yarn so it was running through the hook, I could guide it onto the skein winder by moving the coat hanger back and forth.  And it worked perfectly  …for a time.

After a little while, I realised that there wass a little ball of fluff forming on the hook of the coat hanger.  Thinking that there might be a rough spot taking some of the halo off the yarn, I stopped the skein winder and took a closer look.  And that’s when I discovered this…

That’s right.  You are seeing what you think you are seeing.  In a matter of minutes, my lovely, light, airy, and stunningly beautiful  laceweight yarn was actually slicing through a coat hanger.  You could have knocked me over with a feather!

And I’m so pleased I’d not carried on guiding it with my bare hand…

So, there you have it.  SpaceCadet Creations’s new Luna Laceweight yarn: delicate, soft, luxurious and saturated with colour.  Just as you’d expect.

…And also, apparently, red-hot and razor sharp.  Not as you’d expect at all.