Wednesday 6 August 2014

Rowan's Big Wool Colour Collection

When I first got back into knitting, about a decade ago, some of my first projects were with Rowan Big Wool. As it's so chunky it knits up quickly and it's possible to knit up a bag or hat in a night - perfect for the born-again beginner who wants to see quick results.

Big Wool Colour - Carnival
I've used Big Wool sporadically ever since, most notably to make a heart jumper, which some of my friends liked so much they asked me to knit one for then. Now there's a new Big Wool variation in town: Big Wool Colour.

Rowan kindly sent me a ball of Big Wool Colour and the supporting pattern book, Big Wool Colour Collection, to review. My opinions are my own. Big Wool Colour is the same weight as Big Wool but is twisted with lots of different shades. There are six colourways: Fete, Fairground, Carnival, Jamboree, Waltzer and Carousel. I received Carnival. It's fun and bright, with the same knitting qualities I'm used to with Big Wool.

Me modelling Rumba
The supporting patterns in Big Wool Colour Collection use both Big Wool and Big Wool Colour. To try out the yarn I tried out the looped scarf pattern Rumba. The pattern uses two balls but as I only had one I made a shorter version. After casting on, Rumba only has one row of instructions which is continually repeated. The looped scarf knitted up like a dream and looks great. Big Wool does have a tendency to split, being so thick, but using size ten (UK) needles it's easy to avoid.

Big Wool Colour Collection gets the thumbs up from me too. Published for the Autumn/Winter 2014 season, it includes 13 patterns with both quick and easy knits (like Rumba) and slightly less quick knits including a jumper or cardigan. Big Wool Colour doesn't come cheap, retailing at around £10.50 per ball, so beginners may want to start with a two ball hat or scarf project. The medium size of the wonderful sloppy joe jumper Cancan, which I have my eye on to knit, uses nine balls.

All in all Big Wool Colour and the Big Wool Colour Collection are a great addition to Rowan's yarn and pattern range. My guess is that they will be particularly beloved by beginner and younger knitters who will be charmed by the yarns' bright colours, the patterns' funky designs, and the short amount of time they take to knit up.

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