I was really excited when Laura said she was going to start carrying the Cascade Heritage sock yarns a while back. I mean, who doesn't love sock yarn? It sent my mind reeling with design ideas, although for me, nothing really firms up until I have the yarn on the needles. You can buy the yarn a la carte from Bella Knitting here; the color card is here.
I've been working on a sock pattern in the yarn using the "Forest" colorway (#5619) and I figured that since I now have some experience with the yarn, I should share some of my thoughts on working with it.
First off, the yarn has four plies, so it has a nice roundness to it, creating tidy, even stitches. I'm using a multicolor, and I was pleased with the way the colors stack up -- the colors don't pool in big blobs, but I've got a zippy little almost-stripe thing going on. Of course, these variegations are all pretty much in the same color family, so you'll get a different result with a shade like Londonberry, which combines green and purple hues for greater contrast. Overall, I think that the way the colors shift as you knit suggests that this yarn will work great in a pattern which makes the stitches move. That's what I'm doing, anyway, but the design isn't ready for the big reveal just yet. To give you an idea of what I mean, look at Cookie A's Monkey sock pattern -- the increases and decreases create a pleasing movement in the fabric which shows off yarns like these quite nicely.
I know that I haven't seen this yarn in any of my LYS yet, so you may not have had a chance to see it in person. If I were to compare it with other yarns in my stash which you may be familiar with, I'd say it is most like Lorna's Laces Shepherd Sock and the Regia Design Line Kaffe Fassett yarn by Schachenmayer Nomotta. Both of those are constructed of 4 plies as well. Based on what's in my stash, it looks like the Regia yarn may have the most loosely-spun plies and the Lorna's Laces the most tightly spun, but I think I'd need a microscope to be certain. The Heritage sock yarn certainly seems to be of comparable quality, will stand up to a machine wash and tumble dry, and is definitely a good deal at $16.50 for a 100 gram, 437 yard skein -- enough to make a pair.