From time to time, a customer will ask me to name my favorite yarn in the store, and I have to admit, I have a tendency to be fickle. One day it’s Får, the next it’s Pebble, closely followed by Swans Island Bulky. With so many amazing yarns to choose from, it’s rare that a frontrunner emerges. For the past several weeks, however, I’ve been able to answer without hesitation, because I’ve been working with Sunday Knits Eden.
We had been searching for a good, basic sport-weight yarn, and I remembered what high praise Kate Davies had given Sunday Knits. We got a sample, and by the time I’d finished swatching, I was in love. Eden 3-ply is highly consistent in texture—perhaps not surprising when you consider the Italian mill that spins it has had nearly 400 years of practice. In addition, Carol Sunday, the woman behind the yarn, doesn’t believe in including knots in the skeins she sells. This is only one example of her high standards —she also ensures that her fiber is sourced from humanely treated animals.
In the skein, Eden appears fairly thin, and while generally classified as a sport-weight, it could certainly work as a fingering-weight. Once knit up on US 3, 4, or 5 needles and blocked, it blooms into a cohesive, exceptionally lightweight fabric with a velvety softness. The extra-fine merino has enough tooth to hold stitches in place, but I can’t detect a trace of prickle. These qualities make it an excellent candidate for colorwork, so it’s fortunate that Eden’s palette is gorgeous. From the perfectly pure Red to the softly heathered Twig, the colors have a rich, natural sophistication. I’ve already managed to collect about a third of them, and I’m not sure I could be more excited about my plans.
Carol creates not only yarns, but patterns as well, and I’ve had my eye on her fringed stoles for years. When Knit Purl became one of 15 shops in the world where you can get your hands on Sunday Knits yarn, we made sure to order plenty of Sonoma Stole patterns. This pattern appeals to me on so many levels: I love wearing lightweight, crescent-shaped shawls, I love a pattern with only 6 stitches to cast on and zero ends to weave in, and I love playing with color. While the pattern photography features a stole knit with 17 different colors (available as a kit by special order), Carol encourages Sonoma Stole knitters to develop their own sequence of colorful stripes. I find a project most satisfying when I make it my own, so I took on the challenge.
I created the Sunrise and Wildwood colorways featured in our kits by gathering every color of Eden on the table in front of me. I then picked a few favorite colors I knew I wanted to include and shuffled the yarn until I found pleasing combinations. The Sonoma Stole requires at least four skeins of Eden, but I’ve been working with eight colors for added depth. For my own stole, I was most drawn to colors in the blue-green range. I love the glowing gradient achieved by using neighbors on the color wheel, and I know I prefer to wear green rather than blue near my face. After mocking up possibilities in Adobe Illustrator, I arrived at my own custom stripe sequence, which I’m calling Aurora.
I’m very ready for a sizable, cozy, colorful project for myself, and I plan to cast on any minute now! Judging from the large swatches I’ve already created, I have no doubt this stole will be a joy to knit and to wear. I invite you to follow my progress on Ravelry. My hope is that you might be inspired to try my new favorite yarn yourself.