Thursday, September 25, 2014

Road Maps - A Review of Zealana AIR Marle

I often talk about trying new things, stepping outside my comfort zone, going outside the box.  When presented with the opportunity to try Zealana's AIR Marle for review, I could not resist.  (Disclaimer - I received the ball of yarn for free for review. As always, opinions are my own.)

Zealana AIR Marle

This yarn, part of Zealana's Luxuria series, consists of (are you ready for it?) 40% cashmere (yum!), 20% silk (also yum!), and 40% brushtail possum down (yu… what!?).  My thoughts exactly when I first heard about this yarn awhile back.  However, after learning a bit more about this invasive species and its impact on the environment in New Zealand, I was intrigued.

Zealana AIR Marle

AIR Marle is a double knit weight yarn, made up of three strands of the lace-weight AIR, which according to the label is pill-resistant, durable, and lighter & warmer than 100% cashmere.  As for the specifications, the yarn comes in 50 gram balls at 116 meters or 127 yards that knits up at 21-24 stitches over 10 cm/4 inches on a 3.5 mm / US 4 needle.  Care instructions are to hand wash and dry flat.  Here in the US, the yarn retails for around $46 a skein, making it a truly luxury yarn for that special splurge.

Zealana AIR Marle

After feeling the ball quite a bit, and holding it to my face and neck, I had to come up with the *perfect* project to knit up every yard of this soft, fuzzy, scrumptious yarn.  With the upcoming ND-Syracuse night game this weekend, fingerless mitts were the perfect choice!  Off to Ravelry I went to search for a simple mitt pattern and settled on Basic Fingerless Mitts by Sue Brady.  It is a plain 4x2 rib that really allows the yarn to shine.  Plus I knew with the limited yardage I would be playing yarn chicken should I add cables or other heavy patterning to the mix.

Knitting with this yarn is a dream.  I've mentioned before that I often have to stop and admire the knitting when working with a particularly beautiful yarn, and this was no exception.  Especially after splitting for the thumb gusset, I kept trying it on every couple rounds to feel how soft the yarn was knitting.  The possum and cashmere content give the yarn a fuzzy halo that add to the softness.  As far as the warmth and pilling factor, stay tuned and I will report back to you after wearing the mitts this weekend at the game.  Assuming of course that I finish them in time :-)

Zealana

Visit the Yarn Sisters website to find a shop near you where you can check out this unique yarn for yourself.

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