Knitting with Wollmeise

One of my 2011 Resolutions was to knit something with Wollmeise. I wanted to see if the yarn is worth the hype. I have 5 skeins, two of the same colour, collected over 2 years and never touched. I picked a skein of Wollmeise 100% merino superwash in Spina di Pesce, which is a blue turquoise colour with hints of purple.

My Wollmeise skein was very tightly twisted, and one end looked to be tangled. I started winding from the other end and had no problems. Did a stretchy crochet cast-on and the yarn split several times, which I really don’t like. It has a lot of very small plies and not much give to it, it does not feel like wool. The pattern I chose was Susan Pandorf’s Blue Gentian (Ravelry link). The scarf didn’t last past the second repeat because the cables looked oddly unbalanced, but it was enough to get a feel for the yarn.

Knitting with Wollmeise is not what I expected. The last fingering weight yarn I used was Sanguine Gryphon’s Skinny Bugga, which is a squishy cashmere blend that felt very soft to work with. By comparison, Wollmeise feels hard and unyielding, with no "give" in the yarn. The colours are fantastic, deep and vivid, but the yarn itself is, to me, not great. It feels over-plied and overly twisty, and it splits very easily. I’m having a lot of trouble keeping all the plies together as I work. I wound it into a centre-pull ball, and whether I went from the inside or the outside, the twist was still excessive. I have to keep stopping, holding the work suspended from the ball and letting it untwist.

I’m keeping the Wollmeise I have in my stash, and I will use it because of the colours, but I won’t be hunting for more. The yarn is on time out until I figure out what to do with it. It didn’t look good as the Aria Delicato lace scarf (Ravelry link) either.

3 thoughts on “Knitting with Wollmeise”

  1. I’ve been an Anne Hanson fan for a long time, but Susan Pandorf is new to me – thanks for the link!
    Does the Wollmeise soften up when washed? Or maybe it’s only meant for socks…

  2. I’m knitting with wollmeise for the first time right now as well (the 100% superwash fingering merino, not the 80/20) and while it does not have much give (more like a cotton than a wool), the resulting fabric is amazingly soft. I’m not having any major issues with splitting or twist, though. Sorry it’s not working out for you!

  3. Although I haven’t knit up my skein yet, my initial observations completely agree with yours. It does seem like a really ‘hard’ yarn. It’ll be intersting to see what it does when washed and blocked. The color, though, is absolutely perfect!

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