The more I knit, the more I realize how much I have to learn. Many years ago I started knitting simple patterns with cheap yarn I found in my local shop. Years later, I now find myself shopping around for new designs and colors using hand-dyed yarns from all over the world. My latest discovery is Rio De La Plata Yarn.
I first heard about Rio De La Plata yarn from a fellow knitter – her name’s Anne and she’s also my best friend. At the time, she was experimenting with hand-dyed yarns from South America, predominantly using brands like Malabrigo and Manos. It was her who first introduced me to Rio De La Plata Yarn, although, strangely, she hadn’t tried their yarns herself.
I soon fell in love with this yarn from Uruguay. What wasn’t there to love? It was 100% wool – was one of the softest yarns I’ve ever come across – is hand-spun and hand-dyed by women who’ve been spinning and dyeing wool the traditional way for generations. Rio De La Plata yarn is produced by women who husbands were and still are gauchos – South American cowboys. Being a woman who cares about the traditional preparation of yarn I really like the idea of supporting women who also care about hand-spinning and hand-dying yarns just like their mothers did.
I read about Gladys, whose family has been spinning wool in Uruguay for three generations, and about Berta Gomez, who was a student of Gladys’s for 14 years and is now an instructor and supervisor ensuring quality control of Rio De La Plata yarn. I love knowing there are women like these.
Anyhow, about Rio De La Plata yarn. As said, the yarn from Rio De La Plata is hand-spun then hand-dyed in kettles before being allowed to dry in the sun. Rio De La Plata yarn is available is solid and variegated colorways. A word of warning: if you’re new to knitting with hand-spun yarn you should be aware that because it is hand-spun, there can be pretty big thick and thin variations in places.
Rio De La Plata yarn comes in some beautiful colorways. The Rio De La Plata Solid is made from Corriedale wool, felts easily and comes in three variations: Solids, Faded and Multicolor.
The Rio De La Plata Twist is first hand-dyed before being hand-spun. What you get are some lovely variegated colors.
Following on from this there is the Rio De La Plata Artista collection of yarns. The variegated colors of these are more pronounced and, in my opinion, simply stunning; the best yarn on offer from Rio De La Plata Yarn. It is one of their most popular collections.
The Rio De La Plata Melange collection is ideal if you don’t want a solid color but would prefer something with a hint of another complementary color.
The above are just some of the colorways from Rio De La Plata Yarn I’ve used myself. There are more like the Grueso, Rasta, Boucle and Merino Pampa. I can’t wait to use these.
Rio De La Plata yarn is quite exquisite and can be a very rewarding yarn to work with. When I work with this yarn, I feel that I ‘m just the end of a long line of craft-women who have put experience, dedication and love into making something beautiful.