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Published on May 14th, 2012 | by Rita

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Stitch in Style with Lantern Moon

It is my great plea­sure to talk to you to­day about some amaz­ing items, and the amaz­ing com­pa­ny be­hind those items. It’s no se­cret that I love to knit. I’m al­ways on the look­out for great knit­ting bags, nee­dles, pat­terns and yarn to use. (Es­pe­cial­ly the yarn.) While many peo­ple in the knit­ting com­mu­ni­ty may con­sid­er Lantern Moon a house­hold name, there is ab­so­lute­ly good rea­son for non-knit­ters to be aware of them as well, and I will be hap­py to share ex­act­ly why. First though, the nee­dles! The yarn!

Lantern Moon is a com­pa­ny that makes some of the most beau­ti­ful knit­ting nee­dles I’ve ev­er seen, out of woods like rose­wood and ebony. I had the priv­i­lege of try­ing out the stun­ning ebony in­ter­change­able nee­dle set, along with some love­ly silk/meri­no wool by Fy­berspates, with col­ors by the il­lus­tri­ous Ysol­da Teague.

For those un­fa­mil­iar with ebony, oth­er places you’re like­ly to en­counter the wood is on the fin­ger­board of clas­si­cal stringed in­stru­ments, and on pi­ano key­boards. It’s that beau­ti­ful black wood, that is un­like any oth­er wood. His­tor­i­cal­ly, ebony was har­vest­ed in un­sus­tain­able ways, leav­ing it now a dif­fi­cult wood to come by. Lantern Moon goes above and be­yond to en­sure that they are us­ing wood that is grown and har­vest­ed in sus­tain­able ways, in keep­ing with the rec­om­men­da­tions of the For­est Stew­ard­ship Coun­cil.

The nee­dles them­selves are noth­ing short of a work of art. The set is com­plete with ten sizes be­tween 3.5mm/US 4 up to 9.0mm/US 13, and has four cords, 17″, 24″, 32″ and 40″. The con­nec­tions be­tween the nee­dle and the cord are gold-plat­ed, and have a smooth, ta­pered, thread­ed junc­tion. Oc­ca­sion­al­ly the nee­dle wants to try and un­screw it­self, and for that Lantern Moon has in­clud­ed a small tool that slips in­to give you a bit of torque and trac­tion when tight­en­ing the cord to the nee­dle. It works like a charm!

Un­til knit­ting with these nee­dles, I was a staunch met­al nee­dle us­er. I’d lit­tle use for wood nee­dles at all, in fact. These nee­dles have opened a whole new world to me. The ebony is near­ly as hard as met­al, and has a lit­tle more grip. It’s not as sticky as bam­boo, and the nee­dles have a much more sub­stan­tial feel to them than your av­er­age wood nee­dle. It’s hon­est­ly the best of both worlds, and I’m de­light­ed to use them. This nee­dle set is a once in a life­time pur­chase, and while $350 for knit­ting nee­dles seems spendy, re­mem­ber that you will on­ly need to do it once. The true beau­ty of in­ter­change­able nee­dles is re­al­ly ap­par­ent once you’ve got them at your dis­pos­al.

The name of the yarn is Scrump­tious, and it’s noth­ing short of that. 55% meri­no wool and 45% silk gives this yarn the mem­o­ry and tex­ture and ev­ery­thing love­ly about wool, but with the beau­ty of silk. It doesn’t grow as much as silk alone does, and it’s not quite as springy as plain wool, but close. If you ev­er need­ed a “dressy” wool, this would be your yarn, right here. It’s a de­light to knit with, soft on the hands, and re­sults in a gor­geous, shim­mery fab­ric. I tried out both the DK, which is ac­tu­al­ly a worsted weight, and the laceweight. The lace is plied, and the DK is a sin­gle ply, so the stitch­es have very dif­fer­ent looks to them, as you might imag­ine.

I promised that there is a good rea­son for non-knit­ters to know about Lantern Moon as well. This com­pa­ny has ahigh re­gard for her­itage tex­tiles, and the an­cient prac­tices to pro­duce those tex­tiles. They ac­tive­ly sup­port the artists who pass the knowl­edge of this tex­tile pro­duc­tion from one gen­er­a­tion to the next. These fab­rics are of­ten stun­ning pieces, whether bags, shawls or bracelets. Per­fect gifts for those who don’t know the first thing about knit­ting, as well as pur­chas­es that any­one can feel good about.

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About the Author

Professionally in healthcare, and semi-professionally a photographer, former student at the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, and full-time student of human nature, Rita has been writing for Truly Net for many years. Born and raised in the Midwest, she spent years on Oahu, and has formed some very strong opinions about all things knitting, pie, and the best places to climb. She really enjoys good food, music and friends, and is perfectly willing to write about, and photograph any or all of those things.



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