Review: Brooklyn Tweed Vale

The lovely folks at Brooklyn Tweed very kindly sent me two skeins of their new yarn, Vale. Vale is the newest member of their permanent collection of yarns (you might remember they have a limited edition laceweight called Plains), and an excellent edition, considering how many wonderful lace patterns there are. Brooklyn Tweed even put together a mini pattern collection by Jared Flood, featuring some classic patterns re-imagined in this new yarn, as well as one new pattern, for a small cowl. To amp up the excitement, if you purchase one or more skeins of Vale directly from their site, the yarn will ship with a coupon code for a free digital copy of that very cowl, which you can see in more detail here.

I wish I had a swatch to show you, but as I mentioned in this post, I’ve been knitting-sidelined due to injury (side note- so many great ideas on the comments, Facebook, and Instagram about other crafts I can do while the fracture heals!), so we will just have to admire the skeins as they are. But I did put them up in an apple tree, and the apple blossoms smelled like heaven.

These two colourways are Cobbler and Barberry, and the yarn is spun 2-ply Rambouillet that has a real loft and airiness to it (lighter than merino), and the tight, worsted-spun ply means it could definitely pass for a light fingering. There is a bounce to this yarn, which is rare for a laceweight. The skeins are 450 yards in length, so keep that in mind if you are looking to cast on for a larger laceweight knit!

While many of you may already be familiar with some of these patterns, I thought it would be fun to look at the two most popular patterns from the collection (they have been around for a while, but look very fresh in the new Brooklyn Tweed Vale laceweight) and see if you are tempted to knit them again, or for the first time!

Rock Island, by Jared Flood

One of the most popular Brooklyn Tweed shawls, this  triangular shaped shawl is knit from the bottom up wit the lace edging first, then stitches picked up and increased to form to rest of the body. It’s a two-skein project, and the the design is fully charted, with 8-stitch edging repeats, and the body has 6-stitch repeats.

You Should Totally Knit This If: You love shawls (of course!), easy-to-memorize repeats, and garter stitch. Loving garter stitch is pretty crucial, as there is a lot of it at the widest part of the shawl.

You Should Definitely Not Knit This If:  Garter stitch bores you to tears, you were hoping for a bigger challenge when it comes to lace knitting.

Girasole, by Jared Flood

This is a circular shawl that is easier than it looks, as long as you like knitting lace and working with charts! You will need 3 skeins of Vale to knit this shawl.  It is knit from the center outwards, which means that at the beginning it is quite small and manageable, and you work each ring with its own chart. The charts are very straightforward and the stitches are surprisingly easy (mostly k2tog and ssk, with some yarn overs), with the most complex one being the edging. But at least it is a small chart and you are bound to get the hang of it quickly.

You Should Totally Knit This If: You adore wearing shawls, and the circular shape of this makes you even more excited. And if you love knitting in the round!

You Should Definitely Not Knit This If: You don’t wear shawls. If you don’t wear standard triangular or half-moon shawls, wearing a circular one will feel like wearing a tablecloth. Although I suppose if you decided you weren’t going to wear it, it would be the most beautiful table cloth ever.

What do you think of this new laceweight from Brooklyn Tweed, are you excited to try it? And would you knit one of the revamped patterns, or the new cowl? If you have questions about any of the other patterns in this mini collection, let me know!

7 comments

  1. Kendall   •  

    I don’t understand the recent thinking that a writer must be a part of a culture in order to write about it. People who create stories (and I am sadly not one of them, although I would love to be) must write from their own experience is a position that seems diametrically opposed to the purpose of storytelling by focusing on the writer instead of the story. Who really cares, in the years to come, whose idea the story was. It is the story itself that is important to readers (no disrespect to authors here – just sayin’.)

    So does this thinking mean that no one can write fiction because it isn’t true, or science fiction because none of us is from another planet? Please work on your book, staying true to what the characters are telling you to say, and ignore the PC-ness of those who are, when all is said and done, jealous of your talent.

  2. Stefanie   •  

    Trying Brooklyn Tweed is on my list. Those colors they sent you are so pretty. I hope you’re healing well.

  3. Tori Penrose Digges   •  

    I love the cobbler color! I am waiting on my order now. I got 1 skein of Vale in arabesque to make the new cowl that Brooklyn Tweed released. So sorry to hear about your recent setbacks. Hopefully you will heal quickly and come to a place of resolution with your book.

  4. Bronchitikat   •  

    Kept reading ‘Vale’ as ‘Vole’ and wondering why you’d be knitting with a very small rodent!

    Would knitting ‘English style’ help? Or are your other fingers just too sore? Hope they’ll heal quickly anyway.

  5. miss agnes   •  

    Beautiful yarn, I am sure you are eager to try it. I just bought the first Capsule collection from BT, I am so looking forward to trying their yarns in the next few months. Rock Island is beautiful. What do you plan to knit with your Vale samples?

  6. Tahnee   •  

    This yarn looks super yummy, I hope some shops in Europe will stock it so I can give it a try!

  7. Kessa   •  

    This yarn sounds and looks lovely… Can’t wait to see what you make out of it!

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