Friday, January 3, 2014

Yarn review: Deborah Norville Collection's Serenity Sock Weight

While I'm sticking to my "Create something new every day" (or, at least, work on something every day) resolution, I decided that blog posts on Tuesdays and Fridays are going to stay what they've been - discussions of techniques and such on Tuesdays and reviews on Fridays.  Never fear; I will continue to create things behind the scenes!

A few months ago I posted a yarn PREview of Premier Yarns Serenity Sock Weight and Cuddle Fleece from the Deborah Norville Collection.  If you missed that, you might want to click that link to get caught up.

Today I'll be reviewing the Serenity Sock Weight yarn.  I really was intrigued by the Cuddle Fleece yarn, but I recently bought a very grown-up looking wool coat, and I decided I needed a grown-up looking hat and a grown-up looking scarf to go with it.  I usually don't like hats and scarves, but it's been extremely cold here in Wisconsin, and the coat is a bit itchy around the neck.  I found a nice, non-purple variegated Vanna's Choice yarn I'm going to use.  Perhaps I can get my friend to write up a review of the Cuddle Fleece for you.  If you'd like that, please take my survey and let me know.

Speaking of my survey... I still only have one response.  It sure would be nice if more of you would let me know what kinds of things you'd like to read about here.  I'd like to know if my blog is beneficial to you as you go through your crafting days.  Does it inspire you?  Does it help you as you're choosing yarn, tools, books, or Japanese restaurants?  Is it interesting?  Boring?  Are you reading it just because you're my friend/mother/non-mother relative?  I really do want to know.  Here's an upside to more survey responses:  I'll stop begging.  :)  It's a win-win situation!  It's honestly really quick (only four questions), and I'll be forever grateful to know what you like and don't like.  Forever grateful.  The day after my 100th birthday, when my Purple Mist discount code on Etsy has finally expired, I'll sit back in my rocking chair and think, "I sure am grateful those people responded to my survey.  I really wanted to provide quality, relevant information in my blog, and those folks helped me to achieve that."  What's that survey link, you ask?  Here, dear reader.  Click here.

Whew!  Now that the business has been concluded, let's get down to business.  We're here for the Deborah Norville Collection's Serenity Sock Weight yarn.

Here's a picture of the yarn:


You can just see the bottom of Deborah Norville's picture.  Like on the Vanna's Choice yarn, Deborah Norville has very white teeth:

 Such a pretty smile she has.

Here's the informational section of the wrapper that tells you everything you need to know in 3 languages:


It's not as compact as on the Vanna's Choice label, but everything is there.  I don't know what the triangle with the X through it is or the box with the line in the middle.  I'm assuming either or both mean "dry flat".

You might notice it says, "Free pattern included inside the label."  It doesn't say or show anywhere on the label what that pattern might be.  I like when yarns have the picture of the free pattern on the outside of the label.  I think that can get people thinking about what they can use the yarn for when they're just idly browsing the yarn aisle (as we often do), and they will buy yarn.  It's even better when the label tells you how many skeins you need for the project.  That moves yarn, I tell ya.

But on the Serenity Sock Weight, pretty Deborah doesn't tell you what the pattern is.  Traci will tell you.  It's a...  Um... "Intermediate skill level..."  "Finished measurements..."  Oh, it mentions a cuff and a foot length.  Must be a sock!  Skip to the instructions: "Cuff: Beg at top of sock..."  Yes!  It's a sock!  I guess that makes sense since it's sock weight yarn, but it sure would have been nice for it to say up front it was a sock.

On the inside of the label there's also a ruler that goes just over 8".  I never noticed labels having rulers before the Vanna's Choice yarn I bought for the Colorfully Modern Cardigan.  Now I'm going to look for them on every yarn I buy.  I have a plethora of rulers and tape measures here, so I don't know why that's suddenly so important to me.  I guess I just think it's a nice feature.

On to the yarn itself.  It's very soft, not just to the touch but also the look of it.  When it's knitted there are little fibers that stick up a teensy bit to give the piece a softer look.  I used this yarn to make a baby hat (which I will show you tomorrow), and I liked how it looked and felt.  There also seems to be a bit of a stretch to it (a little more than the Knit Picks Comfy Fingering yarn), which is good for hats and socks.

While I didn't use enough of the yarn to know if there are any knots in it, I did find one odd fuzzy area:


A better knitter than I am would have cut the offending bit out, but I'm not fond of weaving in ends, and it didn't look as if it would break.  It was just a little bit fuzzy.  I knit on, and you can barely see any fuzzy bits in the finished product:


In this picture you can also see those little fibers I talked about and how soft the piece looks.

I didn't have any problems with the yarn splitting (unless, of course, I did something stupid), and the only twisting problems I had was when I was undergoing Chinese water torture doing duplicate stitch for accents on the hat.  You'll see those accents tomorrow.  I think it was the yarn being pulled through so many stitches that made it twist.  Here's a helpful tip for you: don't dangle the yarn to untwist it when there's a kitten in the room.  Frisco is very sharp and quick.

So far I'm very fond of this yarn, and I believe my mother gave me enough of it that I can make the mysterious socks on the back of the label.

Now I finally get to start my grown-up looking hat.  I'm going to curl up on the couch (buried in a warm blanket because it's well below freezing outside and pretty chilly in here) and knit while watching Joss Whedon's Much Ado About Nothing!

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