I have been trying to find the right yarn for the Yuletime Gnome by Alan Dart. The pattern calls for Sirdar Country Style DK, which I am sure is easy enough to get in Great Britian, but not so easy to find here in the US. I searched through the projects on Ravelry to see what others had used. It looked like most people had chosen to use a sport weight yarn to substitute. I wasn’t real happy with that so I kept looking. I did a search on Google for DK weight yarn and came up with yarns that were easily available overseas, but had hefty shipping charges involved for US deliveries. So I went back to Ravelry and did a search in the yarns section for DK weight. That’s when I noticed Paton’s Astra. It is listed as sport, but will knit up to a DK gauge. Then I saw that the Harlot had used it to make mittens. That was a good sign. I went to the Paton website and read about the yarn. It is all acrylic, but that is ok when making toys and Amigurumi. It comes in a ton of colors… a dark, medium and light tan for all skin types! But where was it available? Click, click…. Herrschners, Jo-Anns and Mary Maxim, all online. I think I found my answer! I still needed to feel the yarn. I ran down to the local Jo-Ann’s to see if they had it in the store. They did, but only 4 or 5 colors. I snatched up a couple of skeins of the Electric Blues varigated color. I’ll knit up a little hat real quick and see how it does.
While I was at Jo-Ann’s I looked around for yarn to use for the gnome’s beard. I found this Jo-Ann exclusive “Expose” eyelash yarn in the sale bin. 2 for $3. I picked up a black and a purple… altho it looks more blue in the photo. And the plus is the yarn has little tiny beads throughout. Don’t gnomes have beads in their beards? Well mine will.