Just as March is the month of Irish Soda Bread, to me, the holidays are all about gingerbread. None of this namby-pamby desultory seasoning ~ really spicy gingerbread.
So it is appropos that my fiber purchase to myself this month included four skeins of Quince & Co. Chickadee in ~ wait for it ~ Gingerbread. Rarely does a colorway name so perfectly describe what it looks like. Yes, it’s a perfect Nutmeg Owl colorway.
But Quince & Co. yarn is about far more than colorways. It is American wool, spun in America and masterminded by the always-ahead-of-the-curve Pam Allen of the knitterati. By way of example, at a Knitter’s Review Retreat a few years back, she started a discussion with us about our interest in organic yarns, what would make a yarn “organic,” and even the price point we, as yarn consumers, would be willing to meet. In hindsight, it was a fact-finding mission for what she has now brought to the market.
Back to Chickadee. Have you ever dug your fingers into a sheep’s fleece and felt all the springiness there? That is what knitting with Chickadee feels like. Inspired by Luann, my test-drive is the Kilkenny Cowl, a Quince pattern which is really a sampler of stitch patterns to show off what this hardy little birdie can do. Some cables, some lace ~ it’s all here. And Chickadee does it all.
Simply put: Chickadee feels like nothing else I’ve ever knitted with. Though it’s a three-ply, it feels close to the sheep. Not from lanolin, or even fragrance, just touch. If I had a quibble with it, it might be that Chickadee knits more like a heavy fingering than a sport-weight. But that would be my only quibble.
Unless you are traveling through Portland, Maine, Quince & Co.
yarns are only available online. If you’re interested in them, I highly recommend investing in a color card. Computer monitors are not to be trusted when it comes to color selection, and if color matters to you, it’s worth it. There’s a new separate color card for Tern, the wool and tussah silk fingering-weight blend, as the silk takes color differently from straight wool. I’ll likely have more to say about Tern in the months ahead.
In the meantime, winter is for chickadees ~ the always cheerful friends darting and swooping to my backyard feeder.