If life hands you lemons… buy yarn.

August 4, 2009 § 3 Comments

I went to the Atelier Zitron yesterday, and I had the greatest time. This correlates with the title how? Zitrone is the German word for lemon.

I made it a spontaneous trip, because the night before that, I was overcome with the desire to knit a wonderful, impractical Dr Who scarf, the one Tom Baker wore back in the 70s, in season 12. So I looked around on the internet a bit, and discovered that Zitron does have yarn in a huge range of solid colors, which I hadn’t been aware of before, and decided to take the adventurous trip. 25 minutes from door to door. What a road trip!

My plan was to buy the new pronatura sock yarn with bamboo, and knit it with strands held double, but then I discovered a ridiculously new sport weight merino yarn in even more colors. Lifestyle, it’s called. So new that there was only one dyelot. It was the perfect weight. It’s sqooshy and soft and awesome. It had the perfect colors. (Of course, when I got home I discovered that I had, with a sure hand, picked the wrong brown and grey. But, eh.) I had to pick up two 50g skeins of each, because I wasn’t sure which colors were the ones that only needed like 95 yards, which made the whole thing rather more expensive (even though at a price of €3.25 a ball, it isn’t a hardship. Still, 14 balls of yarn? For a scarf?) but I guess I’ll get some hats out of those as well. It’s a good weight for hats. There’s tons of potential. Red and purple hat, here I come! That’s gonna go especially well with my flame-red hair.

I picked up two or three skeins of Handart while I was there, and when I was just checking out and chatting with the women at the counter, an oldish gent appeared next to me, took a look at my cowl (of course, made with Handart), and, grinning, held two skeins of yarn out to me. ‘Look!’ he said, ‘These will come out next January!’

Meet Mr Zitron. And instead of a two-minute chat, we went back to his office, and for like half an hour, he showed me yarns due to come out over the next one and a half years, new colorways he’s been designing (one inspired by Spitzbergen. Oh, gorgeous, I say!), the raw extrafine merino that’s the base of their yarns, and, oh, unspun bamboo. I have never seen anything as beautiful as that band of fiber, coiled in a bowl with the merino, glowing in the lamplight like silk. Gorgeous.

And then we chatted on, about dyeing, Drachenwolle, Klemens from Leipzig, translating and interpretating (turns out that’s what he studied. how cool is that.), and different micron counts of different sheep breeds. It was hard to leave, really. He’s such a nice guy, and his yarn is, well, spectacular. Great quality, produced in Germany, great colors and dyes that don’t wash out, reasonable prices, and a really nice family behind all of that to boot.

So, yes. I don’t mind spending well over 50 bucks every time I’m there. Luckily, I don’t drive there too often, even though, you know, I could. It’s such a short way from my parents’. But I shouldn’t, and I’ll be back in Leipzig soonish or at least when the semester starts, and they’re only open for the general public on Mondays. Thank god. Or my stash would be growing even more uncontrollably than it is now.

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