NEW YARN: Chester Knits Yarn
There’s a new yarn line in town! And we’re in love. In fact, a number of our staff cast aside our WIPs to immediately cast on new sweaters with it (see below), and we are oh so happy that we did. If you missed your Fibres West browsing this year, you are not alone as the fibre art community was saddened at its postponement early in this isolation period, but every cloud has a silver lining… and ours is our new love affair with Chester Knits Yarn.
Dyed in Williams Lake, BC, using yarn from a Canadian mill, Chester Knits was founded by Jessica Kozuki in mid-2019. Although Jessica only recently launched Chester Knits, with her Lower Mainland debut originally scheduled for last month’s Fibres West show, she’s been dying yarn for five years and her fibre journey began long before that.
Meet Jessica Kozuki of Chester Knits. This is the Milu Shawl by Tamy Gore in her sport base.
A self-described farm girl of Norwegian descent from the Okanagan, Jessica comes from a family that enjoyed raising sheep and where everyone was a knitter, including her grandfather Chester (the Chester in Chester Knits!). As a child her family taught her about shearing sheep, carding wool, spinning and of course knitting, as well as instilling in her a deep love of nature and the outdoors. That deep love of nature is one that you’ll see reflected in the Chester Knits colour palette that is reminiscent of BC’s landscapes, wildflowers and semi-precious stones.
When Jessica had her first child her grandfather, Chester, gave her a beautiful layette that he knit for her new baby, which meant so much to her (check out Jessica’s Instagram post to see pictures of the layette, as well as her favourite picture of her grandfather). Continuing her family’s legacy around sheep, wool, knitting and nature is something Jessica is proud to be carrying on.
A Soldotna Crop WIP, knit in Chester Knits sport in colour ways Hematite, Pussywillow and Sundown.
Baaad Anna’s is currently the only store stocking Chester Knits yarn and we are lucky enough to be carrying both sport and worsted lines, with 48 colour ways in the sport and 29 colour ways in the worsted. Both yarns are dyed on superfine superwash merino bases and are tremendously soft and squishy. For those who enjoy tech specs, this yarn averages 17 microns and is that extra bit softer than most yarns intended for garments that are worn next to the skin which are 19-21 micron wool. You can learn more about yarn and microns in this interesting page from New Mexico State University.
It’s also worth noting that the yarn bases come from a Canadian mill and are Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) certified which means that the wool comes from a farm that respects the welfare of the sheep and the land that they graze on. This is wool to feel good about.
For inspiration on what to make with your Chester Knits yarn, here are some examples of what we have made with it, as well as a few of Jessica’s own projects. The yarn is perfect for colourwork projects, for shawls, and for any project where the yarn will be touching your skin (like Jessie Maed Designs Framework Bralette).
Jessica is wearing her Weekender Sweater knit in Chester Knits worsted.
Fibres: 100% Superfine Superwash Merino
Gauge: 24-26 sts = 4” (10 cm)
Needles: US 3-5 (3.25-3.75mm)
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Fibres: 100% Fine Superwash Merino
Gauge: 18–22 sts = 4” (10 cm)
Needles: US 6-8 (4-5mm)
Canadian milled and dyed.
The online store is stocked with Chester Knits yarn and while the store is still closed for browsing we are offering curbside pick-up and shipping options for customers. If you want any help selecting the right colours for your upcoming project, give us a call between 11am-2pm, when staff are in the store and available to help.
To follow along on with Chester Knits make sure to give Jessica a follow on Instagram @chesterknits.
We can’t wait to see what you knit with your Chester Knits yarn! We hope that you’ll find yourself as smitten with it as we are. This love is one that is here to stay.