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Friday, August 24, 2007

kitty: what's on the needles

White Item #: A-20 1/20 silk stainless steel
Green Item #: A-60 "shosenshi" paper

It is hard to believe this yarn started it all and has been setting in my stash box since March 17, 2005. This yarn marked the first step of my Habu Obsession. I even set up a water strength test back then because I couldn't believe how easy this yarn tore that it would hold up as a garment. I remember just holding the yarn and looking at wonder at the folds in the hanks.

I knew back then exactly what I wanted to make with it, but I guess I was too chicken to start until now. So after talking to Olga & MG a couple of weeks ago, I got the nerve to just do it. So we will see how the cover sweater of the "Knit" book turns out.

The other day I was in my LYS and some one asked me why I loved Habu yarns so much. The answer came so easy; it is the unusual texture, the natural colours, the lack of the feel of commercial yarns, and most of all it is the feeling that you are buying one of the last remainders of textile history. Cottage industries that are still hand making yarns that they have made for hundreds or years. These are yarns and fibers where the sheer skill set need to create them are slipping away from us due to steps that began with the Industrial Revolution and the desire for cheaper faster products.

A Habu though you can still find rare treasures you might have only read about. Hand tied twisted ramie made from the stalks of a ramie plant and hand tied together. A yarn made from fishnets sourced out of Indonesia that has been cut apart and hand tied back together. A traditional northern Japanese yarn from Nigata, Japan made of Fiddlehead fern cotton and silk. Or a handspun yarn from Indonesia made from a rare silk cocoon and it the colour of gold naturally. And if you are feeling like you would rather spin your own fibers there is the under hair of Guanaco that is the colour of nutmeg.

There is an element where history and tradition lives on, and Habu is bringing it to our doorsteps.

4 small balls of Army Surplus Yarn

The other thing on the needles right now is a pair of fingerless gloves.

This year at MS&W one of the vendors from an Ohio mill had these little tiny balls of Olive Green yarn. It had been the left over from a run that they had done for the US Army. Instantly I wanted to make a pair of fingerless gloves. Guess I have something for army green fingerless gloves.



  1. I guess most of Habu's yarns leave me cold because they feel nasty. I shop with my fingertips--if it isn't soft enough for my face, it goes back on the shelf. Granted, they are interesting, but I would rather read about them in your blog than purchase them myself.

    I did buy some silk mohair and cashmere at Avril in Japan, but they passed the face test. Lovely stuff!

  2. Habu obsession. Try addiction. I have never tried it.

  3. thank you for leaving a comment about the Kushu jacket.

    i look forward to seeing your habu project come along. the green is so pretty.