Category Archives: Rowan Denim

CLEARANCE Rowan Original Denim

We’re clearing out some summer yarns that we aren’t bringing back, so grab it on sale before it’s gone!

Rowan Denim Sale Display.png

 

CLEARANCE 20% OFF Rowan Original Denim

Rowan Original Denim is a 100% cotton yarn, which behaves like denim fabric.  It shrinks slightly on its first wash and the colour continues to fade gradually over time, creating a unique look. It’s great for people of all ages, and all kinds of projects, including sweaters, tanks, blankets, bags, facecloths and tea-towels, etc.

Rowan Original Denim is suitable for all-year-round knits and showcases textured stitches and cabling brilliantly To keep your Rowan Original Denim garments looking sharp, try hand washing in a delicate wash and add a cup of white vinegar to the water before adding the garments.

  • 100% Cotton
  • Double Knitting Weight
  • 50g/90m (98.5yds)
  • Gauge: 20 sts & 32 rows = 4″/10cm
  • 4mm/US6 needles
  • Machine wash cool, lay flat to dry
  • Read all our Denim Blogs and Hacks

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French Market Bag

Here’s a great one for the people who aren’t afraid of the hook – a gorgeous french market bag made with DENIM! I love Rowan denim, and I love small summer projects that are high on satisfaction and low on commitment. Plus, the yarn is on SALE all month – how can you go wrong?

Materials

 

Boneyard Shawl

GALLERY Denim Noir

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Black Denim

As I’ve been writing about Rowan Original Denim yarn (ON SALE NOW) a question has come up a few times – what is the black denim like? And what they are really thinking is “will it end up looking like the sexy black jeans that ended up a sad dingy grey?”. The answer is it could if you’re really mean to your denim sweater, but if you take proper care of it you’ll have a “happily ever after”.

I think most people think of denim yarn as a knitterly sibling of denim jeans, but it’s really more of a cousin, so it doesn’t wear the same way, especially since we (hopefully) don’t wear or care for our sweaters in the same way we do our jeans. In high school, I worked in retail selling Levis jeans and became extremely well acquainted with the garment: they’re worn constantly, washed frequently, and cared for poorly. An average pair of jeans is dealt A LOT of abuse. Not so our sweaters: we don’t wear them as much, they aren’t washed as much, and when we do wash them it’s either by hand with a delicate wash like Eucalan or Soak, or in a delicates bag on the delicate cycle (cold) in the machine. Add a cup of white vinegar to the wash to stabilize the dye and you have some very good looking denim knitwear (the vinegar trick works with your jeans too, it’s especially helpful with dark washes).

So let’s take a look at some black Rowan Original Denim inspiration …


black denim 1Photos: TheLovelyFox

The Lovely Fox’s Deschain

This is the project that helped open up my perspective on black denim yarn. The pattern, Deschain, was designed with a substantially thicker and heavier yarn, but the garment design is so oversized that it easily scales down to a thinner yarn. The texture looks amazing with lace and works really well with the drape of the oversized aesthetic.

black denim 3

Vale by Kim Hargreaves

In my mind, if super designer Kim Hargreaves is down with it, it might as well as have received royal assent (that’s Canadian parliamentary humour for “it’s legit” … I’m also really pleased that Kim thinks it’s ok to wear a tiara out-and-about, I could use a little more bling in my coif). Like the denim Deschain above, Hargreaves exploits the denim to create a tension between the delicacy of lace patterning and the texture of the yarn. It’s a balancing act that works beautifully and makes for a really interesting garment – definitely one you’ll never find in any store.

20150516_153505_medium2Photo: Pascoe

Pascoe’s Seahorse

This guy obviously either lives in a beautifully curated home or a Pottery Barn … either way, it’s a nice backdrop for a beautiful sweater, Seahorse. One of the big problems with black yarn is that it is very hard to photograph the colour properly, and it often looks like a washed out dark grey. The yarn itself is a very deep, dense black, so add white vinegar when you wash it to stabilize the colour.

black denim 2

Photos: robbyraccoon

RobbyRaccoon’s Ridge

I don’t know which pattern was used for RobbyRaccon’s Ridge top (I think it might be a variation of Rosamund by Tonia Barry, but it’s a different type of sleeve construction … if you know please tell me, it’s driving me up the wall), but it made excellent use of black denim yarn, every time I look at it I experience sweater envy.

Notes

  • Find our Denim Hacks & reference links (basically, wash it in vinegar to stabilize the colour and knit it a smidge longer).
  • To keep your denim looking crisp and pretty, hand wash in cool water with white vinegar (I prefer the Allen’s Cleaning Vinegar, it’s double strength).

PROJECT Ondawa (in denim)

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Ondawa (in denim)

My friend Reney is into Rowan Original Denim yarn (ON SALE NOW), and the other day she asked me a common question; What would look good in it? This is a question I both dread and adore. The dread comes on first because I usually need time to think about things and give a thoughtful answer. Then, once I’ve had some time to process, comes the love; I get to trot out all the different ideas and examples, it’s a big creative game of research and “compare and contrast”.

One thing that’s at the top of my mind for Rowan Original Denim is Guernsey or Gansey (a style of fisherman’s sweater) – the denim yarn looks STUNNING knit up in a guernsey. The picture above is a project I found on Ravelry of Michelle Wang’s Ondawa made with Rowan Original Denim – I think it’s a thing of beauty!

Notes

Find our Denim Hacks & reference links (basically, wash it in vinegar to stabilize the colour and knit it a smidge longer).

Size

  • finished bust: 43¼ (47½, 51¾, 56¼, 60½, 65)”
  • Sized to fit approximately 30-32 (34-36, 38-40, 42-44, 46-48, 50-52)” bust

Materials

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guernsey.jpg

Photos: janetwynne, Brooklyn Tweed, Amirisu.

Other patterns that I think would look amazing made with denim are Guernsey Wrap by Jared Flood and Void by Melanie Berg (the denim Guernsey Wrap on the left is made by janetwynne).

guernsey 3 copy.jpg

Guernesy looks especially good on men (maybe because they were created for them): above are Bowline by Tin Can Knits (you should knit with 4mm/US6 needles and make one size larger) and Beagle by Norah Gaughan.

Flax combo.jpg

Photos: Tin Can Knits, jennyinmaine.

Flax is a simple top-down, seam-free FREEBIE from Tin Can Knits that would look awesome made with Rowan Original Denim for anybody at any age to be worn in any season!

 

 

 

 

HACK & PROJECT Simple Skirt

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KNIT HACK: Project Searches

Sometimes a great way to browse for potential projects on Ravelry is to do it through actual projects. The main advanced pattern search on Ravelry is great, but it normally shows patterns based on their popularity, and because of that it often feels very redundant, and I don’t get to see project ideas that are not the most popular. One alternative way to browse for inspiration is to search PROJECTS, rather than patterns.

  1. I go to the ADVANCED PATTERN SEARCH
  2. Then I click on the PROJECTS tab in the top left. This will show all the projects people have added to Ravelry.
  3. You can change the order they are displayed based on various factors by clicking on the drop-down menu that is just to the right of the “search” box.
  4. So far, you still have a lot of stuff to look at. The big column of menu items on the left side of the screen will let you limit the search parameters. For example, you might want only crochet projects, or a certain weight or yarn, or a specific type of project (like a shawl, or a sweater). Today, I am searching for a specific yarn, so I went to the bottom and chose YARN NAME and put in “Rowan Denim”.
  5. I found a skirt that looked really interesting. To see more skirts made with this yarn, I put “skirt” into the search box and it pulled up all kinds of skirt projects made with Rowan Denim.

 

 

 

Simple Straight Skirt

In my search today, I found something really cool, a simple straight skirt made with Rowan Original Denim – a great little summer knit that you can wear all year. Plus, the denim yarn is pretty sturdy so it will stand up much better than a regular cotton or a wool. Plus, Rowan Denim is ON SALE NOW!

Materials (for a 19″ skirt)

  • Rowan Original Denim: 6(7, 7, 7, 8, 8, 8, 9, 9, 9, 10, 10)
  • 4mm/US6 needles (straight or circular)
  • TWO 3.5mm-24″ circular needles
  • Size I (5.5mm) crochet hook, for provisional cast-on.
  • ¾”/2cm non-roll elastic (waist measurement plus 2″/5cm).
  • Needle and thread (for the elastic)
  • Optional: Blocking materials.
  • Pattern Download

Size

Finished hip sizes (actual skirt hip measurement after seaming):  32 (34, 36, 38, 40, 42, 44, 46, 48, 50, 52)inches or 81 (86, 91, 97, 102, 107, 112, 117, 122, 127, 132)cm.

DENIM HACKS

Denim yarn is a lot like the denim your jeans are made of, and it is dyed with the same type of dye, indigo. All the things that happen with your jeans also affect denim yarn. You should definitely not avoid using denim, and knowing a few hacks in advance will make the experience fun.

1. Shrinkage

Denim shrinks in length (like jeans), so I suggest you make your project a little longer than you normally would, maybe buy an extra ball. If you are using a pattern written by Rowan for their denim yarn, all of this will already have been taken into account, so you don’t have to worry about this.

2. Dye

Due to the nature of the indigo dye, it bleeds. The two darker colours come off on your hands quite a bit, and I’ll admit that that is a constraint unless you live in a world where everything you own is a dark colour. The lightest colour isn’t as bad, the colour transfers a little bit but not a ton.

  1. I skein up the yarn and secure it in at least 4 points. If you’re making something big you can join the skeins and made a super-skein to save time down the road.
  2. I fill a basin with cold water and white vinegar (maybe a cup? I just splash a bunch in). I use the Allen’s Cleaning Vinegar, it is double strength and seems to stabilize dye better than regular white vinegar.
  3. I leave the yarn in the solution for at least 15 minutes – I like to give it a good soak for good measure.
  4. I hang the yarn to dry.
  5. With the two darker colours I will wash the yarn a second time in a fresh vinegar bath, to set any residual dye.

It’s a little bit of work, but in the summer it’s fun to do some experimentation and light chemistry experimentation.  I do it in my bathroom and the indigo has never stained my white ceramic. It’s also a fun thing to do on the deck or balcony.

Other Denim Hacks & Lore

 

 

FREEBIE French Market Bag

 

 

French Market Bag

Here’s a great one for the people who aren’t afraid of the hook – a gorgeous french market bag made with DENIM! I love Rowan denim, and I love small summer projects that are high on satisfaction and low on commitment. Plus, the yarn is on SALE all month – how can you go wrong?

Materials

Notes

If you want to read more about knitting with denim yarn see the recent post by Mason Dixon Knitting, they’re denim fanatics and know all the ins & outs. Personally, my only advice (when making a market bag) is that the indigo dye comes off (it’s supposed it, that’s what good indigo does), so use metal needles, wear dark colours, and don’t sit on light coloured furniture when you work with it – its a nice throwback to when I was a kid and my mom dressed me up in dark clothes when I chose to play in the mud.

FINISHED OBJECTS

Weather is a strange thing, our environment has such a strong influence on us, but we rarely feel our relationship with it (spoiler, this might end up being a slightly philosophical update). Spring brings a lot of change and does strange, unpredictable things to my mood. My fibre arts compass goes haywire, I lose my direction and end up working on a bunch of random little projects that don’t really have much to do with selling you stuff. That’s ok, we can both use a break once in a while to charge our creative juices.

The following is a parade of the random projects I’ve accomplished this spring …

handmaiden mohoair tissue box cover

Mohair Tissue Box Cover

A pink, mohair tissue box cover. It isn’t my first tissue box cover, but so part it is my favourite. I made it for my house, but it landed at my parent’s house (cause you know, every mom should receive a pink mohair tissue box cover for mother’s day). I’ll make a second for myself. Why pink mohair? I wanted it to hearken back to an old 1960’s mohair sweater, the colour was perfect – Thank You Fleece Artist-Handmaiden! Why a tissue box cover? They’re ugly, I can’t think of a better object to ear a sweater.

Materials

 

Rowan Denim Tunisian Hand Towel

Tunisian Hand Towel

I sometimes in the warm weather I like to mess around with Tunisian Crochet, and flat, rectangular things are great for that. I took the Rowan Original Denim for a ride, and it was win-win all around! We now have a pretty new table thingy in the store, and I got to rev my spring crochet engine. The denim was lovely and the crochet was fun! If you want to learn how to do Tunisian Crochet (it is very easy) we have an upcoming class on May 28th. If you can’t make that, you can also learn the way I did – on Craftsy! Jennifer Hansen’s Tunisian Crochet class on Craftsy is EXCELLENT, I highly recommend it.

Materials

 

DMC natura XL bowl cozy.jpg

Bowl Cozy

This bowl cozy is another test-drive, playing around with yarn, covering up something unsightly project. Plus, you can never have enough knitted & crochet objects in a yarn store, right? Anyway, I chose the yellow because it matched the other stuff already on the table. The DMC Natura XL crocheted really well, I’m very pleased with it. Just a side note, crocheted bowl don’t seem to stand up all by themselves, unless you make them twice as tall and fold the edge over on the inside of itself, to make a double wall. I opted to stick a regular bowl inside my crocheted bowl to maintain it’s structure. It’s all display, but hey, what isn’t these days?

Materials

 

dmc natura xl lace swatch

Swatch for Dawning

This one is in-progress, but what the hell … I’ve completed swatching for DAWNING, a bulky-weight lace pullover from a back-issue Creative Knitting (I tracked a digital version down through the interweb). I wanted to take the DMC Natura XL out for a real drive, and I always need things to wear around the store. The uninspiring colour matches my summer wardrobe, which is usually a safari-esque palette.

So far, I’ve made 4 swatches, and one arm (presently blocking). I usually try to start a sweater with the arm – if things start going sideways with the tension I can find out much faster than if I’d started with the back. Cotton has a tendency to stretch, as does lace, so thorough swatching was important to make sure I won’t end up with a sweater-a-saurus. I was also curious to see how the yarn worked-up on different size needles; it seems to be fairly flexible and does well on a 7mm/US10.75 to 9mm/US13 needles, but if you use the larger sizes expect your garment to stretch in the wash.

Materials

 

Noro Silk Garden Wood Fungus Tea Cozy.jpeg

Quirky Tea Cozy

Yes, I made a tea cozy that looks like it crawled off the page of a Dr Seuss book. And I LOVE it! It was a birthday gift for my mother, who can’t stand receiving gifts unless they are something she has been coveting or are hand knit. And yes, I went out and bought a teapot to go with it – it was necessary to try on the cozy as I worked. And let’s face it, this one is ALL display. It is currently hanging out with the Mohair Tissue Box Cover (above). The pattern is by Loani Prior, Tea Cozy GENIUS. The yarn is Noro Silk Garden, and full disclosure, I used an extra skein and played around with the colour distribution A LOT. What you see in the finished product is extensive editing.

Materials


 

Well, there you have it, a bunch of weird stuff. If there is a theme, I guess it would be “don’t be afraid to try new things”. You never know what you’ll like, or even fall in love with. Spring & Summer are great low-pressure seasons when you can play around and try new things, and I am all for taking advantage if that.

On my to-do list is a larger project using Rowan Original Denim – I’m thinking a knit wrap of some kind? Something that really exploits the denim texture and indigo colour.

 

NEW & FREEBIE Rowan Denim

Rowan Original Denim DISPLAY

Rowan Original Denim

Rowan Original Denim is a 100% cotton yarn, which behaves like denim fabric.  It shrinks slightly on its first wash and the colour continues to fade gradually over time, creating a unique look. It’s great for people of all ages, and all kinds of projects, including sweaters, tanks, blankets, bags, facecloths and tea-towels, etc.

Rowan Original Denim is suitable for all-year-round knits and showcases textured stitches and cabling brilliantly. If you want to keep your Rowan Original Denim garments looking sharp, try hand washing in a delicate wash and add a cup of white vinegar to the water before adding the garments.

DENIM HACKS

  • Rowan Original Denim is dyed with indigo, and while using this yarn you can expect dye to rub off on your hands and needles, especially the darker shades.
  • Consider using metal needles and wearing dark colours while you work with it, (and definitely stay away from white furniture).
  • To stabilize the dye, block your knits in cold water with a cup of white vinegar.
  • Read more about using denim yarns and knitting denim squares.

Shop Online Button Turquoise 250w

rowan denim combo

Photos: Rowan. Patterns: Creeper, Paris, Raspy

Creeper

Paris

  • Pattern
  • Rowan Original Denim: 11(12, 12, 13, 14) skeins  [finished width: 17(18.5, 19, 20.5, 21″)]
  • 3.75mm/US5 needles
  • 4mm/US6 needles

Raspy

  • Pattern
  • Rowan Original Denim: 11(12, 12, 13, 14) skeins  [finished width: 17.5 (19, 19.5, 21, 21.5″)]
  • 3.75mm/US5 needles
  • 4mm/US6 needles

 

 

 

Boneyard Shawl