De Rerum Natura’s new Albertine

Hi everyone! Long time no post, but I have a great pleasure to share with you a new local yarn, Albertine by De Rerum Natura.

Many of you may know, if you are an European knitter in particular, that De Rerum Natura is a very French yarn brand. They sell French merino yarns produced in France, and it’s worth to note that they source their wool locally, from French farmers in Provence, and the breed they rear is a French merino breed “Mérinos d’Arles” (for heathered colorways, Portuguese black Petra Merino wool is blended).
Their major yarns Gilliatt (worsted weight) and Ulysse (sport weight) are both very light because of their woolen spun, and have generous yardage (they are also known for their value for money). If you are an European knitter looking for a substitute for Brooklyn tweed’s Shelter, I recommend Gilliatt! (Take a look at my Bedford pullover made with this yarn 🙂 ).

Albertine (pronounce “aLbeRteen” s’il vous plaît) is not as famous as Gilliat or Ulysse, but deserves our attention! This fingering weight yarn and her big DK weight sister Pénélope are more sophisticated, spun in “worsted” style from a combed wool (and just a little bit more expensive).
They were originally made from 100% merino wool, but from April 2018, 10% of silk is blended to organic French merino wool, to our graeat pleasure! And this is the version I purchased, in two shades.

I first bought Brume.

Despite the color name (brume means mist) and contrary to my expectations (I thought and hoped it would be blue grey because of the name), it’s blue!
I bought this yarn because I thought I could get the gauge needed for a project (and I did!), but Brume looked too blue to me for the project.

So I also bought Sauge (sage) and am happy with it 🙂 The color is difficult to define, but I’d say subtly greyish mint green!

As you can see with the swatch, worsted spun gives an excellent stitch definition. I thinks this yarn is definitely perfect for textured stitch patterns.
The brand site says a ball has 200 meters (219 yards) and the standard gauge is 28 sts and 40 rows with 2.5 mm (US 1 1/2) needle. The swatch above is knit with 3.5 mm (US 4) needle and the gauge is 24 sts and 40 rows (I’ve got 32 rows in Stockinette stitch), but it doesn’t feel too loose.

I have never used the “old” Albertine so I can’t compare two versions, but the most important and intriguing change in the new one is the addition of silk, right?
From my experience with similar yarns, this 10% of silk is not so “visible”: the sheen silk could add is very discreet on this yarn. But I have to add that Albertine is a non superwash yarn and merino is normally very mat wool as you can see with Gilliatt or Ulysse! If the merino yarns you have worked with so far were sheeny, they must have been treated superwash, meaning coated with resin or silicone (yes, plastic!).
It seems silk also adds silkiness (ha ha) to the yarn, because the handle is soft for a non-treated merino wool.

I’m knitting a set-in sleeve Grown-up Starry with it and doing some experiments 🙂 I hope I can call for testknitters shortly!

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