• What's so special about possum yarns?

January 08, 2022

Our first Shop Update for 2022 sees the return of our Merino Possum Fingering yarn, a very special yarn base produced by Wild Earth Yarns in the South island of New Zealand.

It's been a long wait for this yarn base, as it is not spun all that frequently, but that's another reason that makes this base very special.

Since discovering possum yarns when visiting New Zealand in 2016, I've since knit numerous projects including socks, wraps and mitts in possum yarn blends.  

Possum fur has a very short staple length and hence can only be included in a small percentage in yarn blends, but even the inclusion of that small amount of possum fibre brings about some very special benefits. 

It's unique hollow structure, means it is water-resistant, light, airy and warm.

In fact, is is known to be the third warmest fibre in the world, after polar bear and arctic fox fur.

These include luxurious warmth, light-as-a-feather airiness, a gentle drape and a gorgeous halo effect (similar to what is achieved when holding a mohair or suri alpaca yarn double with other yarns), as well as a beautiful heathered brown colouring to the undyed yarn.

Whilst possums are a protected species in Australia, as an introduced species to New Zealand, they have wrecked havoc on the native flora and fauna. 

With over 70 million possums needing to be controlled in NZ, possum hunters have been give special access to areas of land controlled by the Department of Conservation to hunt and trap wild possums.  They must adhere to the Animal Welfare Act 1999 and treat any animals captured in an ethical and humane way.  The possum fur used in yarns and fabrics produced in New Zealand is now seen as a ethnical by-product and much sought-after product around the world.

Louie & Lola Merino Possum Fingering is a non-superwash woollen spun yarn comprised of 80% Merino / 20% Possum Fur.  This new batch has a meterage of 425m/100gm and has been spun a little more finely than previous batches which yielded 390m/100gm.

It works up more like a sport weight or light DK weight yarn, at a gauge of 22-27sts/10cm using 3-4.5mm needles.

We hope you will enjoy our new Merino Possum Fingering colourways. 

We have dyed up 15 coordinating semi-solid colourways on the base, all available in sweater quantities in our Shop Update at 12noon AEST today.

Below: Natural, Salmon Run, Bridestowe and Cypress.

Below: Natural, Salmon Run, Mint and Blue Sky.

Below: Natural, Blue Sky, Mint and Darker Dasher.

Below: Natural, Mint, Sage and Salmon Run.

Below: Bridestowe, Salmon Run, Tangerine and Sage.

Below: Natural, Ginger, Tangerine, Sage and Darker Dasher.

Below: Natural, Dusty Rose, Rhubarb and Tassie Pinot.

Below: Natural, Blue Sky, Bridestowe, Salmon Run and Charcoal.

Last year we knit the Fale Cowl by Gretha Mensen in Merino Possum Fingering in the Ruby Bare colourway - perfect for cold Tassie winters.

In November 2021 Catherine Rein of The Cable Lace Design Co. released the beautiful Saligna sweater designed in our Merino Possum Fingering Yarn.  Catherine used our Hellebore colourway as the Main Colour, together with five gorgeous contrast colourways for the colourway yoke section:

Some other pattern ideas for Merino Possum Fingering:

Fale Cowl by Gretha Mensen:

Like a Cloud by Joji Locatelli

Pink Fizz by Andrea Mowry:

Barley Light by Tin Can Knits:

Bubbly Sweater by Isabell Kraemer:

STRIPES! by Andrea Mowry:

Possum Pullover by Meg Roke:

Cloudburst Mitts by Arienne Grey:


Missoni Accomplished by Espace Tricot:

Nalu Mitts by Leila Raven:

Kobuk by Caitlin Hunter:

 We hope you will enjoy this special shop update.