What every crafter wants from a yarn is a great range of colours! I use the gauge of the rainbow… if I can make a rainbow I’m very impressed with the colour range.
But I also want it to be truly eco-friendly, delivering a positive service to world in it’s existence, so it needs to be recycled (or sustainable non-polluting plant based).
I once had a yarn that ticked the boxes, a wonderful recycled yarn that came in all the colours of the rainbow. It was King Cole Big Value Recycled Aran.
Alas, it is no more!
A couple of months ago I had great difficulty getting hold of this, my favourite, yarn. All the UK suppliers seemed to be running down stocks. So I wrote to King Cole to ask them, praying that they weren’t discontinuing this wonderful eco-friendly yarn. Sadly that’s exactly what they’ve done!
This is a massive blow to the Recycled Yarn sector. This was the ONLY yarn of this type in a full spectrum range of colours, that was widely available and highly affordable to boot! To the eco-crafter this is huge and I’ll be sad once I’ve used up my stash.
When I started writing this, I was pretty peeved at King Cole for depriving the world of this great ‘do-good’ yarn. But it pays to keep an eye on Eco Yarnland, which, of course, I do.
So I’m happy to tell you that yes, there are other options!
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In this practical Aran weight we have Lionbrand Re-Up and a brand new yarn from Paintbox.
Re-Up was released in 2019 but is still not widely available. It’s available directly from Lionbrand, but disappointingly isn’t in a big range of colours.
Paintbox to the rescue? Maybe …
They have just released (March 2020) their new worsted/aran weight Recycled Cotton, so yaaay, I was soooo happy to see this, really I was, it’s only a tiny bit more expensive than the King Cole, but then I saw the colours. They are lovely, but remember I’m thinking in rainbows here, so come on Paintbox you can do better, you’re almost there! Just bring out an orange, a true red and a proper purple please! The range is absolutely gorgeous though isn’t it? Check it out on LoveCrafts
Are there any others worth looking at?
Hoooked Eco Barbante Milano has been on the go for a few years now, only in a limited range of colours at LoveCrafts, but a much bigger range directly from Hoooked, although not all the colours of the rainbow, sadly.
But… drum roll please …
Hoooked, have just brought out a brand new yarn and it is very nearly perfect! They have just launched their recycled Soft Cotton and I just found it while writing this post!
It’s DK weight but looks a little thicker and recommends a 4mm hook so could well be more like an Aran weight. And here’s the best bit, it’s not expensive and comes in all the colours of the rainbow, well sort of! Ok, it’s not perfect, for a perfect colour spectrum I want a strong purple or at the very least an indigo, but a strong blue will have to do!
I can definitely work with this, my stash is about to grow.. again! These colours really are so gorgeous, how can I resist? Hopefully LoveCrafts will be stocking it soon, in the meantime you can get it directly from Hoooked with worldwide postage.
Ooh, I have an idea, if this lovely yarn from Hoooked is more like aran thickness I can mix n match with Paintbox to get my Rainbow, much happy dancing with clapping now! Keep everything crossed they’re compatible. I promise I’ll come back to tell you along with my free rainbow pattern too. **UPDATED: YES they are perfect together, they are very similar in thickness! The Rainbow pattern is here on the blog along with a Sun and Cloud, all free and using recycled yarns.
For other options and an ever-updating extensive list of Recycled Yarns of all thicknesses pop over to my post The Definitive (ish) List of Recycled Yarn.
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Good to see that manufacturers are getting their act together – it’s terribly disappointing when good, eco-friendly yarns are discontinued and I don’t really understand why. You’d think they would be more popular than ever.
I know, it’s very sad. I think it’s a case of big brands really aren’t embracing eco-friendly the way they should be. It’s most likely all about what sells. Crafters tend to buy what they know don’t they? So unless their fav yarn company promotes a greener alternative or they themselves have a sustainable life ethos, they won’t go looking for a greener option. They may not even realise that their yarn isn’t eco-friendly. I see many posts tagged ecofriendly because they’re made in cotton, yet cotton (non organic) is far from eco-friendly. People just don’t know.