Every hand-dyer is different, and each creates and curates colour in different ways. Today I am exploring the colours of The Uncommon Thread, an exciting hand-dyer working in Brighton, England.
Ce Persiano of The Uncommon Thread creates bold, punchy, and thoroughly modern colourways. Her rock candy brights and rich and deep neutrals inspire high-contrast colour combinations.
This feature is the third in a series of posts featuring the dyers and yarn companies who have contributed to Handmade in the UK. A full list of features can be found below.
THE UNCOMMON THREAD : bold, punchy, and strong
Ce Persiano, despite being born under the scorching heat of the Brazilian sun (not literally, thankfully!), took to knitting like a duck to water. After discovering Ravelry and hand dyed yarns, having a go at dyeing was the next natural step. She was soon producing more than she could knit and thought she would list a few skeins on Etsy. They soon sold and this encouraged her to keep experimenting and offering these experiments up for sale. Two and a half years on, The Uncommon Thread has a distinctive style and has grown into a well-recognised brand.
A passion for colour and texture is what keeps Ce going: she is always in search of just the right shade. Sometimes days are spent at the studio, just in search of the precise blend of pigments in order to achieve the desired effect. Most of The Uncommon Thread colourways are repeatable and are precision measured so the batches, although small, are quite consistent.
Colours are created with the knitter in mind, in order to bring pleasure with every stitch and a treasured finished object. Ce’s strength lies in her subtle semi-solids and complex over-dyes.
The Uncommon Thread colours typically go one of two ways. First there are the dramatic, vivid and saturated brights. In my opinion these colours are more beautiful more than they are pretty; they emanate strength rather than being soft and delicate.
While Ce loves to dye brights, she also creates an exquisitely wide range of neutrals, a rainbow of greys and browns and taupes which vary from pale and quiet to intensely dark and saturated.
The Uncommon Thread offers many yarn bases, ranging from cobweb to bulky weight. The fibres go from from indulgent cashmere to soft merino, not forgetting the best of British: BFL and Shetland. The range is always expanding and has recently welcomed the arrival of the first custom yarn: Merino Fingering, a super soft loosely spun singles yarn that has incredible drape and a subtle shine. Despite its softness, it is also quite hardwearing.
Sumptuous DK in ‘breath’
While I ADORE The Uncommon Thread’s stronger colours, to fit with the more delicate colour palette featured in Handmade in the UK, I restrained myself and decided to work in a colourway called ‘breath’, a graceful and subtle silver.
Sumptuous DK is single ply; 40% Merino wool, 40% Superfine Alpaca, 20% Silk, with 230m (250yds) per 100g skein. It gives amazing stitch definition, while at the same time having a wonderful softness and halo. The yarn and colour were a great match for the Rosebud Beret – a slouchy beret-style hat. This design (and the rest of the knits in Handmade in the UK) will be available mid April – get our email updates and we will let you know when it is available!
The lace pattern used for this hat is one that I initially designed for the Rosebud Shawl, a design from our Fall 2012 book Pacific Knits. The Rosebud shawl would look great in a bold red or hot pink!
get your Uncommon Thread yarn ASAP!
The next Uncommon Thread shop update will be on Friday 15 March at 4pm GMT – for your local time, click here. Yarns can disappear from the shop pretty quickly, but they are also available on pre-order: choose from the available colours and they will be dyed specially for you and posted in approximately 4-6 weeks of ordering.
What other yarns were used in Handmade in the UK?
I was very fortunate to have the support of several UK dyers and yarn producers on this project. In the process of writing the book, I am speaking with and blogging about each of these great businesses – click the links to learn more!
Would you like to be notified when Handmade in the UK is available for purchase? Get our email updates to hear about our patterns and tutorials as they are launched.
Great designs for bold colours: