Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Yes, it does have cashmere in it.

Debbie Bliss. To me, she it the Martha Stewart of Knitting.
I was one lucky knitter to spend the afternoon with Debbie.

My knitting career began when I picked up a debbie bliss book. Those gorgeous baby knits...not the crazy primary coloured trucks and animal sweaters. These were tasteful, beautiful knits for babies.

My child will wear these knits

And away I went...knitting, learning, searching, discovering...all the while wanting to knit everything that debbie bliss designed.
Imagine how I felt the day that I discovered her yarn. I actually drove an hour to another town to find it...I had to have some.
Now, Debbie Bliss yarns are always found in my house. I love the cashmerino line, it is truely one of my favourites.

I was surprised to see the chatter on line recently about the cashmerino lines. Surprised, not disappointed...surprised. Could it be true? Does the label say cashmere content, but indeed it contains none? Do I care?

Well, let me just say it's not that I don't care. I would hate for something to be mislabeled, and the public mislead...but really, cashmere or not...this is fabulous yarn.
It is a joy to knit with and if it was made from dog hair (which it is not!) I would knit with it.

That brings me to yesterday.
Debbie was in town...at the LYS for her trunk show. I had to come to grips with the fact that I had no sitter, and was not going to meet her.
Well, my DH came home early! I had to go!

Firstly, she is a lovely, brilliant and down to earth woman. The knits...oh the knits she brought that we could try on! Do I have a new list of projects!
We ladies...the handful that were there, all chatted with Debbie, asking questions, admiring her designs and new yarns.
She spoke of the manufacturing end of her yarns and I had to pose the question. I hated to bring it up...but I am glad I did.

I've heard the rumors on line of the dispute in regards to the content of her yarn...
Do you want the whole story? she asks?
Yes, of course.

The rumors are just that. Rumors. There is no truth to them.
There seems to be some back stabbing going on in the yarn business...like most businesses.

A yarn Debbie Bliss has put her family name on is being slandered. This is unfair.
She has been to the manufacturer in Italy...she has had the yarn tested numerous times, and everytime the goat hair content is there.

The label is correct.

I have heard it from the woman's mouth and have seen the sincerity in her eyes. It is so unfortunate the turn this battle has taken. She is really troubled by this whole thing. Her company is a small company of eight people....who all work very hard to bring us these designs and yarns. This is not only hurting the integrity of her yarn, but it is damaging to her name and her person.

Debbie, stand behind your product. You have done nothing wrong and I for one stand behind you. There is no ground for any action on "their" part...but I must say that if someone was slandering my product and my name, I would certainly be taking legal action against THEM.

Here is Debbie's open letter:
"As you may know there has been some malicious rumours circulating in the USA suggesting that my cashmerino qualities contain no cashmere at all.On hearing about the rumours my distributors in the UK, Designer Yarns , who buy the yarn from a leading Italian manufacturer immediately started extensive retesting of all my cashmerino ranges in the UK and Italy,including DNA`tests. All conclusively confirmed the presence of cashmere in these yarns.
As you can imagine this has been an immensely stressful situation for me, not only does it bring into question my own integrity but also that my distributors, and the manufacturer, all who have had many years of experience in the business .I am a small outfit, not a impersonal, large corporation, and I rely on the loyalty and fantastic dedication of a small group of knitters and pattern checkers to make my projects happen.The potential damage that these attacks could have hurt us all.
I cannot emphasis enough that the rumours are untrue. Meanwhile I take great comfort in knowing that there are fantastically supportive knitters and retailers out there."

Debbie's test results can be found here.
Let's be done with it and just enjoy the knitting!


Anonymous said...

good on you for clearing this up! poor woman--why do we keep attacking women who are trying to make their way in the business world? what's up with that? I love her patterns, too. I was just checking out that sheep dress for an upcoming baby!

Courtney said...

Here Here! I love Debbie's yarns and patterns! I used the silk/alpaca blend for my pair of Fetching and for some legwarmers and everyone who touches them falls instantly in love.
I made one of her baby pattern for my little goddaughter and it turned out beautifully!
Thanks for clearly pointing to where the test results can be viewed and to her open letter. Now I can direct anyone with suspicions to your blog for clarification!
I haven't used the Baby Cashmere yet, but I plan to on something for me! :)

miss ewe said...

Thanks for that! I will pass this around.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for that! I have never had the occasion to use her yarns, as they're a bit pricey for me yet, but I am happy to know that she stands behind the quality of her product. If the opportunity presents itself, I won't hesitate to choose her yarns in the future.

Amy said...

First, that sweater looks great on you. I'm just a bit jealous that you were able to meet Debbie! Hers were some of the first patterns I knit when I resumed knitting as an adult. I agree with you on the funny directions and no diagrams, but the finished products are beautiful, and the yarns are fab.

Anonymous said...

YAY for Debbie! I've used her yarns in the past, and I really like them. In fact, the purple Cotton Cashmere sweater I knit for my niece from the Special Knits book is still going strong.
When the rumors started surfacing, I didn't know what I think. I knew the facts would eventually speak for themselves. Debbie's name is cleared! What a relief! I imagine we are not far from the beginning of legal action against those who slandered her. In my opinion, this would be appropriate, especially if the rumors harmed her financially.

PS. I did some digging around after reading your last post, and I found instructions on how to do a seamless, top-down, set-in sleeve in my copy of Barbara Walkers 'Knitting From The Top'. Thank you for mentioning that this method of sleeve knitting existed. It's going to save my current knitting project from becomong a UFO.

Anonymous said...

First, I just love your blog, second, I have some beautiful Debbie Bliss wool/cotton that I can not wait to knit with. Her yarns are just beautiful! It is a shame that such nasty rumors start and then the time and effort it takes for the person to gain back the trust of their clients. Debbie Bliss yarns and patterns are just beautiful and I will keep supporting her by purchasing them.

Peg-woolinmysoup said...

She certainly looks and sounds like a woman you could enjoy a cup of tea or a glass of wine with while knitting her patterns with her yarn. Thanks for telling us of her yarn, cause I think her Cashmerino is the best!

Rhonda said...

I too, have met Debbie twice now, and I didn't believe a word of the nonsense. She is too upstanding of a person to think otherwise. She's been one of my favorites for a long time.

Laura said...

Thanks for passing on the word from the horse's mouth, so to speak. I recently started a pair of socks in Cashmerino Aran, and I love this yarn! Like you, I don't even care what's in it. It just feels lovely to knit and looks equally wonderful. While I can't really afford to knit a whole sweater from it for myself (at least not if I'm paying full price), I still think that the DB Cashmerino yarns are a good deal for the quality that you are getting, especially when you compare it them to some similarly- or higher-priced yarns of lesser quality. For small items like socks, scarves, or the Fetching gloves, it makes a very affordable luxury.

Carol said...

I too love Debbie Bliss patterns and would love to be able to purchase her yarns not available in my province yet

Sue said...

Yes, I have heard the rumours and read her letters on a few blogs. I love her designs and yarn too. Did you decide on any new knits that she bought to show you that maybe we have not seen yet.

Acornbud said...

Thanks for the info. This was the topic of discussion last week at Aloha knitters but it sure is good to hear it from Debbie herself!

Elemmaciltur said...

Good on you!

I've never knitted with Debbie Bliss yarns...but I'm sure that they're great!

Leanne said...

I've actually never used any Debbie Bliss yarn, but I think I'm going to buy myself some, to show my support.

That sheep dress sure is adorable!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your thoughtful post. I've heard from many that Debbie Bliss is a wonderful person and I think we all can see it from her designs and yarns.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Debbie Bliss reporting. . how exciting to meet her, I too love the picture with the beautiful red sweater! Have you any idea which book/name of pattern it is?
Your blog is great! Thank you.

Anonymous said...

I have been a fan for years, but
after yesterday's revelations of
the real test results - the link
is at Knitty- I can no longer
support Debbie's argument. Hopefully, she is innocent and the
rich guys who did this terrible
thing will go to jail. I have
to think that there are a lot of
scared LYS and very angry consumers. I, for one, want my money back.


Annette said...

Thanks for the information. I love Debbie Bliss' designs and yarns. I will continue to be a devout fan and purchase her products. I'm joining your KAL!

Why is it that when people reach a certain level of success in any field, there are people who want to take them down? It's sad, but true.