Dabbling in Dapple
It's been a summer of shawls for me. Weeks of fingering and lace weight yarns, lovely and nice as the warm weather moved in. It's been great. But it's also been a lot of working with very fine wool. So, after a few months, I was craving the weight of something heftier on my needles. Maybe a cardi, or even dip into my sweater stash.
But the thought of putting something like a Lopi on my needles, and by extension, my lap, in 30C + heat was about as alluring as an invitation to nap on an airport runway at noon under the full sun. I just couldn't do it. And then came a chance to dabble in Dapple before it was released.
A bit of background - Dapple is a new yarn from Brooklyn Tweed. It's a blend of Colorado Merino (60%) and Texas organic cotton (40%), woolen spun in a DK weight.
I've only knit one thing in cotton, and while I liked it, it was a cowl and not a full garment. I've just never really been a cotton person. But I'm a huge fan of Brooklyn Tweed, and in particular their woolen spuns. My curiosity surged and a few weeks ago I went to the store to choose my colour.
It's the colour palette that really makes Dapple special. Because of the blend, every single skein is different-even if it's in the same dye lot. The merino wool absorbs more dye than the cotton, creating a tweedy look that varies from skein to skein. I settled on Cosmos, a blue that at its lightest looks like light denim jeans, and at its darkest looks like a deep indigo. Again, all these shades exist within one dye lot.
My project - Santa Fe by Isabelle Kramer - required seven skeins. That meant taking a good look at each hank, to gauge if it was suitable for the project.
It was an interesting process, and one that I'm not used to doing. Normally, you grab your skeins, check that it's all the same dye lot and voila! You're ready to go. Dapple asks for a little more work. You really have to think about how you want to use your wool and how each ball is going to work together.
The yarn feels a lot like other woolen spuns by BT- Loft, Shelter and Quarry. It's a little sturdier and doesn't break easily, though it still requires a gentler hand.
It sits nicely on the needles, and the stitch definition is off the hook, thanks to the cotton.
More than anything, what I like about Dapple is that it's an alternative to straight cotton, which I've always found a little stiff, and not very soft. Dapple bridges the gap between soft wools and stitch-defining cotton.
It's a great summer yarn for wool fans, and I think at a DK weight it's got almost unlimited potential for anything from hats to sweaters and cardis that can be worn year-round. I also think it's going to be pretty popular, so I recommend adding it to your stash soon!