The Shawl of the Wild: Zoology and Yarn

Do you hear that? A faint whispering, coming from might be singing? Oh, boy, it's definitely singing. 

It's singing that dang baby shark song.

This can only mean one thing. Shark Week is upon us!! Buckle up, JBWU students, it is time for a zoology lesson.

In the last few weeks, we've gone over a little bit about the animals that we get various yarn fibers from, including alpacas, sheep, and goats. A little mohair, anyone? We've learned about how different countries and cultures around the world use animals to create fibers and textiles in many different ways. But how else do we incorporate the animal kingdom into our creations?

Every year, we celebrate Shark Week on the anniversary of the Discovery Channel's first ever TV Shark Week, with a fishy and delightful shark-themed pattern. This year, Knitting Nuances' designer Laura Cunitz designed these absolutely fantastic socks:

The colorways are by Valkyrie Fibers, who are based really near to us in Tahoe! Thankfully, we don't have any sharks in Lake Tahoe, or in the Truckee River...just lots of friendly swimmers! But, you might still want to keep your shark socks out of the water.

Actually, as recently as the 1930's, swimsuits (previously called "swimming costumes") were often made from wool! Could you imagine going to the beach in a 100% wool swimsuit? In the article linked above, the BBC says that this may have been a way of discouraging women from swimming in public, which at the time was an issue of public modesty. 

Men's wool 'speed suit'
Photo courtesy of the Leicestershire County Council Museum Service
So, we have animal fibers in our yarn, and animal-themed patterns, but what else is there? Stuffed animals, and projects for our pets, of course! Recently, our Bean Ailene made a couple of extremely cute stuffed elephants for a certain birthday girl. We also have a new crop of our Toft Amigurumi Kits for you to check out. Do you know someone who would absolutely love a magical unicorn or a majestic moose? You're in luck!

Chablis the Unicorn and Logan the Moose

We've also got patterns for anything your pets could ever need. Doggie sweater? Got ya covered.  Cat bed? Yes indeed, coming right up. I promise, your pets are always knit-worthy!


Have you made anything for your animals lately? How about any fun plushies? We'd love to hear what you're working on - leave us a comment and let us know!

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