Hello, Brooklyn Tweed Ranch 01.

We are delighted to announce that Brooklyn Tweed’s newest yarn has arrived!

Ranch 01 is a worsted weight, limited edition, ranch-specific Rambouillet yarn, which means every fiber in these skeins was sourced from a single flock of sheep living on Bare Ranch in Surprise Valley, CA.

Brooklyn Tweed has always sought to highlight single breed wools and support US ranchers with sustainable environmental practices. This project allows them to shine a spotlight on the people and practices behind their yarns, one ranch at a time. You can read more about Bare Ranch on the BT blog and get a good sense of the people who made this yarn possible.

After the wool was sourced at Bare Ranch, scoured in South Carolina, and spun in Maine, it traveled to Pennsylvania to be hand-dyed with natural pigments at Green Matters Natural Dye Company. Ranch 01 colors are created with plant-, mineral-, and insect-based natural dyes, pigments that need to be cared for differently than conventional dyes.

With this in mind, Brooklyn Tweed has created a tip sheet to go with Ranch 01, with information about naturally dyed yarn and how to care for it – we’ll include one with each purchase of Ranch 01 here at our shop.

What to knit with Ranch 01? At 220 yards per hank, you can get a hat or pair of mitts out of one skein, and a scarf or cowl out of two or three skeins. Look for a binder of Ranch 01 patterns here at the shop for ideas!

The yarn arrived today, but already it’s selling quickly – come by and see it while supplies last! The small-batch nature of this yarn means we can’t reorder it, and when it’s gone, it’s gone.

See you at the shop!

Pom Pom Quarterly: Fall 2016.

The Fall 2016 issue of Pom Pom Quarterly is here!


This issue is devoted to natural dyes, featuring garments knit in naturally dyed yarn along with articles and tutorials on natural dyeing.

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The knitting patterns in this issue are the tantalizing stuff of autumn: cozy sweaters, mittens, hats, shawls, and other cold-weather garments we can’t wait to wear again someday.


Those interested in learning to dye will find inspiration in an interview with Kristine Vejar, and instruction in a dip-dye tutorial.


You’ll find Pom Pom Quarterly on the teacart among the latest books and magazines here at the shop. See you there!

Mirasol Samp’a: now on sale!

Another discontinued yarn has moved to the Sale Trunk here at the shop: Mirasol Samp’a. It’s a lovely yarn, but since it’s no longer manufactured, we’re now offering it at a deep discount of over 25% off the original price!


Mirasol Samp’a is a DK weight 100% organic cotton, naturally dyed in a pleasing palette of pastels, punctuated by a few brights. Consider this yarn for baby sweaters and blankets, washcloths and market bags, summer shawls and tees. Look for more pattern ideas on our “DK weight” Pinterest board!


Though we’re sad to see good yarns go, we love sharing them with you at a discounted price. Come by to pick up some Samp’a at a great price before it disappears!


A reminder: all sales are final on discounted yarn. There can be no returns or exchanges, nor special orders–the discount applies only to what we currently have in stock. Thanks!

Hello, Sincere Sheep Cormo Fingering.

Another new yarn has made a home here at the Hillsborough Yarn Shop. Say hello to Sincere Sheep Cormo Fingering!


Based in Northern California, Sincere Sheep produces naturally dyed yarns from U.S. sourced fibers. Cormo Fingering is a 2-ply yarn made of 100% Cormo wool, a cross-breed of Corriedale and Merino sheep originating in Australia. The Cormo sheep whose fleece made this yarn live in Kaycee, WY.


Cormo is a finewool, much like its Merino ancestors, and makes a highly elastic yarn that’s velvety soft to the touch. The 2-ply structure of Cormo Fingering gives the yarn a pebbly texture, and gives the knitted fabric a lot of character.

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I’m using a skein of Cormo Fingering to knit “Starshower,” a shawl-cowl hybrid by Hilary Smith Callis. It starts off like a traditional top-down shawl, with a garter tab cast-on, grows for a bit with regular increases, then is joined to work in the round. The end result is a shaped cowl, like a shawl with no dangling ends to worry about.


Each 4 oz skein has 500 yards, plenty for a cowl, shawlette, scarf, or hat and mitt set. A versatile skein like this makes a great gift, too, so consider it if there’s a knitter on your holiday gift list this year. Look for pattern ideas on our “Fingering weight” Pinterest board, and look for this special yarn in the fingering weight section here at the shop. See you there!

Back in stock: Swans Island Natural Colors Merino Fingering.

Swans Island Natural Colors Merino Fingering has been a favorite yarn from the moment it first arrived at the shop, back in 2011. It’s been so well-loved, in fact, that our basket of the stuff began to empty once again last month, leaving us with a paltry palette of just eight-or-so colors. Our recent Swans Island shipment remedied that, and how.


We added eleven colors on this order, filling the basket quite nicely, indeed.


The Natural Colors collection is so-named because its yarns are hand-dyed with plant-, mineral-, and insect-based natural dyes. One of those is indigo, used to create vivid blues, purples, and grays.


Indigo has a tendency to rub off with the abrasion of knitting or crocheting, and will turn your fingers blue as you work with it. It washes off with soap and water, and shouldn’t continue to rub off once the finished piece is washed and rinsed til the water runs clear. I wrote a blog post awhile back about what to expect from indigo-dyed yarns, and Swans Island marks their indigo-based colors with a little tag, explaining the same.


Over the years, we’ve seen glorious shawls and stunning sweaters made from this special yarn. It’s happy in stitch patterns from simple garter stitch to elegant lace, and one 525 yard skein goes a long way. For pattern inspiration, check out our Pinterest page online, or come to the shop to flip through the Swans Island pattern binder.


Look for Swans Island Natural Colors Merino Fingering in the fingering weight section of the shop. See you there!