I purchased this booklet because I've been on a cabling binge, and Norah's designs have always been stellar.
She never rambles, just gives clear and accurate instruction. Also, her designs are compartmentalized, by which I mean one design element doesn't HAVE to match, or line up perfectly with, another. The shaping is minimal and really lets the textures take center stage.
I've started with Gullveig, which I've lengthened to dress length. Although the cabling is intricate, a rhythm is quickly established and it's a true joy to work.
I'm a seasoned knitter but wouldn't dissuade someone newer to the craft, or newer to cables, from attempting these projects. Norah is such a beloved designer that there is a plethora of forums for advice and clarification.
Although I've never availed myself of this service, I think it's lovely that JBW offers it. And, if their record of exemplary customer service is any indication, I'm sure each hank is better wound than any other hank has ever been wound in the history of hank-winding.
Thank you to all who've knit this up and taken the time to give us your impressions.
I've given this yarn three stars just because stars are required, although I've never used it. The three stars are for the colors, which are wonderful and cannot be dismissed.
I was hesitant when I saw the roving-like quality of this yarn, and further put off by the reviews that consistently listed pilling, fuzzing and too much inconsistency (thick/thin) as attributes. I don't think it will work well for socks.
I also like my "superwashes" to feel and behave like true "superwashes" - I don't think the Mini Mocha will. I'm not sufficiently well-versed in the process of making a "superwash" a "superwash"', but something was definitely lost in the translation with this particular yarn. It looks as though it would felt, and quite well.
Having said all this, I do think it has potential for other projects which don't require as much durability as socks. Something that immediately comes to mind is something using Elise Duvekot's "Knit One Below" (see in Jimmy Bean 'books' - I can't link in this format) in the Column Pattern, and combining the Mini Mocha with a better-plied superwash, or possibly a cotton or silk, also in a fingering weight. This would use the colors to good advantage, and the resulting fabric would be that of a DK or light worsted.
As to price, as long as one dismisses the "superwash" aspect, I think it is very reasonable for colorways this well conceived and executed.
...and a fair value for money when one considers the yardage. I stumbled across this at my LYS, and my mother fell in love with the deep teal color. I made her a tunic, with very narrow ribbing (two rows of 1X1) and vented sides, the rest in stst with a 1X1 cowl neck. It blocked beautifully and the drape is lovely. I will definitely indulge in the again. It was a joy to work with and the colors are incredibly rich.
I have been knitting with Cashcotton 4Ply for ages, and am disappointed to read it to be discontinued. Hopefully RYC will introduce a comparable alternative. This yarn works up and wears beautifully. It is visually 'primitive' and the colourways reflect this - which only adds to its charm. I've used it for everything from socks to sweaters - it drapes wonderfully - and although it's a fingering-weight it still creates an excellent fabric with outstanding stitch definition on needles up to 4.00mm. It launders very well, and I've even tumble-dried a pair of socks - the socks were 'hidden' in a sweatshirt and went in a load my college-aged son was doing - with no ill effects; no distortion, no shrinkage. However, I don't think I'd make a practice of it, and suggest using a lingerie bag for the garment to avoid any unnecessary friction. Then again, I usually do that with all my handknits.
....I wear the socks I knit, and I need them to wear well. This wool doesn't.
After the first wearing, I noticed an excessive amount of pilling on the soles. This is possibly due to the somewhat “abrasive” nature of the suede lining in my clogs, but I still found it unacceptable; I don't like feeling that I have to “baby” socks.
The colors are fabulous and long-lasting, and I really like the “feel” of this wool, but I won't use it again for an article that is required to “work” for a living. Maybe a beanie or lacy scarf, but this "sock" yarn is not one I'll use again for socks.