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I'm never bored. If I'm not knitting or spinning, I'm gardening or reading. Always up to something!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Kind Yarn for a Sweet Bundle of Joy

I'm so sad to say I couldn't get to my great nephew's baby shower today. I've been down with a virus since before Easter. I made it through Easter Sunday and fell apart the next day with another sore throat, swollen glands and stuffy head. I've rested and guzzled lots of tea and vitamin C but still felt runny and stuffy today. I couldn't expose the rest of the family (or tire myself out) so I stayed home. I'll pack up my gifts for the wee one and mail them to my niece and nephew next week. In the meantime, let me tell you about O-Wool "Balance" the yarn I used to make a little sweater and hat.


I used a free pattern from Ravelry called "Little Coffee Bean" for the sweater and Susan B. Anderson's basic baby hat from her Itty Bitty Hats book. I used almost 3 skeins of O-Wool "Balance" in the Jade colorway.
O-Wool "Balance" is 50% organic wool and 50% organic cotton put up in 130 yard, 50 gram worsted weight skeins. "Balance" is also available in a chunky weight. The information card that was included in my shipment states the following:  O-Wool is sourced from organic merino sheep farms in South America where they are freely ranged and non-mulesed.  The organic cotton in the blend is grown in Texas.  If you want to know what non-mulesed means, please Google it. Now that I know about this common practice for sheep farming in Australia (which is where most of our Merino wool comes from) I will carefully consider who I purchase my knitting yarn from in the future.
O-Wool yarn is spun either in Massachusetts, Wisconsin or Maine and skeined and dyed in Maine or Philadelphia. It's processed with biodegradable soaps and combed to remove veg matter, rather than carbonized with an acid bath. It's dyed using low-impact acid dyes recommended by the Organic Trade Association. These dyes contain no heavy metals and use a minimum amount of water to ensure minimal environmental impact.
If you'd like to know more about O-Wool, please listen to the "Woolful" podcast, episode #13. The more I've learned about ethical wool, the more careful I'll be in the future about my yarn purchases. If you'd like to learn more about ethical wool farming, here's a link with the names of some supplies and farmers that you  may find interesting. https://exchangingfire.wordpress.com/2011/01/30/what-about-the-sheep-a-guide-to-ethical-yarns/  I'll get off my soap box now and go lay down.