One of our last updates featured a highly variegated new colorway, Another Dye in the Pot, one which is likely to pool a bit. While we have a deep love for the subtle shifts of semi-solid colors, we can also get on board with the crazy, kaleidoscopic colors. Pairing these together creates an exciting palette and mix of shades you might not imagine combining. They're super fun to dye and are amazingly beautiful. You can expect to see an offering of rainbow madness in surprising color tones over the course of the summer.
But, you may be asking yourself, what the bleep am I going to knit with that? And how can I tell what it's going to look like knit up? These are common questions asked when knitters are exploring unique and dynamic colors, so we want to talk a bit about the practical aspects of variegated yarns.
Part 1: How can I predict what the skein will look like when knitted?
There are many types of color variegation. Each skein is dyed with specific techniques that produce distinct effects. Colorways are created with a particular vision of how they will look as a garment, and the particulars of how we apply dye are the determining factor. That's one of the reasons we do not reskein our yarn before sale. If the yarn has been reskeined you can't tell anything about possible color repeats or what it will look like knitted.
Here's an example of three Verdant Gryphon colorways, which exhibit different kinds of variegation:
The top one is Gopher Tuna. If you look along the skein you can see how all the shades gently speckle against each other, and no single color is concentrated or stripes across the skein.
Here's an example of it knit by Raveler Zed. There are no apparent color repeats; instead the colors are evenly dispersed and you see subtle speckles of each randomly in the knitting.
The middle skein is Another Dye in the Pot. See how there are obvious, stripes of color all the way across the skein? A peach streak, an aqua streak, a greyish streak, back and forth. However the concentrated sections of color are all different sizes and shapes. They don't always cover every strand in that section. This tells you that you might get flash pooling or very obvious color flecking, but are not likely to get the traditional kind of clear-cut pooling. When we write in our listing notes that a colorway 'may exhibit flash pooling,' this is what we mean.
Here's a knit-up sample by Raveller Gardenmama:
The bottom example skein is Cucumbers in Their Season. On this one there's a really obvious sectioning of the skein into separate, bands of colors (or shades of the same color, in this case). Half is light green, the other half darker, with some middle ground between. A yarn like this will pool or stripe (depending on the size of the piece you're making) in a clear way. The shades separate in a clear-cut way which is consistent throughout the work.
Here's a perfect example by Raveller LynnieBug:
So, now you know how to tell what you've got! Stay tuned for "Part 2: What the Bleep do I Knit With it?" coming soon on the VG Blog.
meandering stripes and leaping polka dots,
The Verdant Gryphon