All the kits within the DK range include the yarn, which is in balls of 112m per 50g and a tension over 10cm, using 4.5mm needles, of 21 stitches by 27 rows. The yarn is 75% alpaca, 25% sheep wool. All the fleece for the yarn is sourced from our own and other UK herds.
What's so unique about alpaca yarn
Firstly, it's about the alpacas
Although all the yarn we sell comes from alpacas living in the UK, alpacas were originally bred by Incas in the mountains of Peru, where the temperatures regularly swing from -18C at night to +20C during the day. So the alpacas developed to survive. The fibre has a unique hollow quality, and the trapped air expands and contracts with the temperature.
What that means for us
This means it keeps you warm when it's cold, but keeps you cool when it's hot.
It's also naturally water-repellent. As evidence, we wear our hats in the rain and come in with totally dry hair ... so finally, knitwear that you can wear in wind, rain and sunshine!
Alpaca yarn is popular because it’s so soft, durable, luxurious and silky. In fact, it's stronger than mohair, finer than cashmere, smoother than silk, softer than cotton, warmer than goosedown, and more breathable than thermal knits. While it's similar to sheep’s wool, it is warmer, not prickly, and has no lanolin, which makes it hypoallergenic.
Knitting for Mental Health
The power of crafts and creativity to improve our mental and physical well-being are well proven, and most knitters will, when asked, say they love it because it helps them relax or because they love what the make. Here's some of the research that supports them:
Harvard Medical School, Mind & Body Institute 2011
The Sustainable Story