I received the first skeins of travel yarn in 2016 from a friend who attended a destination wedding in Iceland. She gifted three skeins of Léttlopi in a deep dark blue that, in turn, became a travel gift for a Swiss cousin. But, even though I had been knitting for years, I did not purchase any yarn on our 2017 retirement road trip – Minnesota to Spokane to Seattle to Vancouver and home again via the trans-Canadian highway. I am sure there must have been yarn stores along the way but none made our travel itinerary.
I corrected this omission during our 2018 European adventure – Amsterdam to Spa-Francorpschamps in Stavelot, Belgium to Ingolstadt, Germany to Switzerland and Italy – with purchases our first day in Amsterdam and on our last day in Zurich. Now I make a stop at a local yarn store as a planned part of our travels, whether I am in Arizona for Cubs spring training (2019) or just two weeks ago while in Tennessee for a mountain top wedding.
These most recent acquisitions to my stash were handdyed exclusively for Smoky Mountain Spinnery in Gatlinburg and represent the four seasons in their Smoky Mountain Collection. Each colorway is based on a photograph that captures the location’s natural beauty: delicate spring flora, the vibrant colors of summer twilight, cascading water amidst fall’s changing leaves, or the bright blue winter canopy over frosty hillsides. With two skeins of each, the possibilities for future knitting projects are endless.
Since my knitted contributions to this year’s church auction (the Mallory Shawl and the French Oak Scarf) were successful in raising funds and as Brezel, Marie Greene’s new design for her 2023 January Sweater Workshop, is waiting in the wings, I just completed several smaller projects. Using worsted weight tweed yarn in vibrant magenta, the matching beanie and scarf combo with reversible cables was a quick project. Plus, this set gives me a head start on next year’s auction donations.
And for a sneak peak at Brezel details — With a release date of December 30 for Knit Campers like me, Bretzel incorporates Bavarian twisted stitches and German short rows to create an overall design resembling a platter of carefully crafted pretzels. And, yes, the name of the sweater is the German translation of this symmetrically twisted, salty snack. In the weeks ahead, in addition to the knitting lessons shared during this sweater workshop, there is a promise of pretzel baking lessons. Yumm!
Vintage travel posters inspire a new exclusive fiber series from frabjous fibers & Wonderland Yarns. Amsterdam was the June limited edition colorway and, while this vibrant multi-colored skein was definitely outside my normal color spectrum, Richard and I so loved our time in Amsterdam and the colors are so reminiscent of the city-scape that it became a must have. The Windmill Shawl features a simple lace design reminiscent of the country’s many windmills to which I added a picot edging.
My Egypt travel kit is already on order from Northfield Yarn. I have wonderful memories from my trip to exotic Cairo with time in Giza and a picnic along the Suez Canal. Although the lush green tones of that skein are not the colors of my memories, then again, I did visit in June.
PS – And just because I’ve always wondered (and you might too), here is the etymology of frabjous: An adjective coined by Lewis Carroll in Through the Looking-Glass meaning splendid or magnificent.