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March 2023



They Followed Me Home

One thing that’s very dangerous about going to Germany is the yarn.  Germany is where the sock yarn comes from (Regia, Stoller & Schall, Trekking…), and as far as I can tell the German culture still embraces the idea of handicrafts like knitting.  You can be strolling around a department store (which might span several city blocks), minding your own business, when – suddenly – you find yourself in The Yarn Section.

That’s right, it’s completely normal for a department store to have a selection of yarns on par with a modest local yarn shop.  Just, you know, because while you’re out shopping you might end up needing a few balls of yarn, right?

Why can’t we figure that one out in America, huh?

I actually didn’t break my yarn diet too badly while I was there, though – I had very limited bag space, and somehow I managed to remember that fact whenever I was fondling a particular skein.  In the end, I returned to the US with this:

My favorite is the blue and white striped yarn.  Not because I like stripes (I’m finding I actually dislike them immensely except in rare circumstances), but because the dye pattern is based on the Swiss flag.

Yarn based on flags!  Why don’t we have that here?

Unfortunately, they only had Switzerland.  This will join the Danish, Portuguese, and Brazilian flag yarn in my stash that I found last time I went to Germany, all of them to eventually join the pair of German flag socks I made.

The other two yarns are both Woole Roedel, which is apparently a chain of stores in Germany.  If you speak German it seems that you can order online, but I can’t actually tell for sure.

I did also pick up a bit of yarn for my favorite knitting friends.  Erica (of the Wedding Blanket II) asked for “strange colors, and lots of stripes”.

Wish granted.

Shruti, on the other hand, was much harder to shop for.  She’s allergic to wool, which is bad enough in a muggle but just tragic in a knitter.  Also, the German sock yarn industry is pretty dominated by wool – they don’t really go in for cottons or synthetics (except insomuch as they can be paired with wool).

However, perseverance and a careful lookout for hot pink eventually yielded success in some synthetic-but-still-unbelievably-soft yarn:

It’s a little on the thick side for socks, but it might be great for gloves or a cute little hat or something.

And…that’s it for yarn from Europe.  Feels a little light now that I’m back at home – maybe I need to go back to get some more?