Beautiful Noro

In the pre-Ravelry days, my friends Michelle and Betsy made it their mission to “document” as many colorways of Noro Kureyon and Silk Garden as possible. They bought skeins and knit swatches, they surfed the web for finished projects, they looked at skein after skein at yarn shops, all in the hopes of finding out, what are all the colors inside these Norotootsie Roll Pops?

Side note: check out Michelle’s profile on Ravelry: “If I could, I would use Noro yarns for everything, even cooking.” Case in point.

I could never really join them. I didn’t like the feel of Kureyon, and many of the other yarns had bits of mohair and angora in them, to which I’m allergic (Silk Garden, I’m looking at you). But, oh, the beauty! I was definitely smitten with the way Noro yarns knit up, and was hoping that one day I would get to use some Noro myself.

As time went on and Noro continued to expand, they started producing yarns which were more amendable to my knitting desires. Mind you, they still don’t make any color progression yarns which are entirely non-animal in composition. That would be the day! But still, I could finally start playing around…

And so I’ve been doing for the past few months. Stay tuned for the results! I may even have some Noro to share with my readers!


I think I might be a Noro lover. How about you?!?

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61 thoughts on “Beautiful Noro

  1. Bertha

    I love the colors of Noro but I seldom like the actual base yarns. Silk Garden is too mohair-y, Kureyon is too scratchy…I might like some of their non-mohair containing, less scratchy yarns (Like that cotton Taiyo or whatever it’s called?) but I haven’t been able to try them yet.

  2. Carolyn

    Ok, i love the colours of noro but hate…well, thats a pretty strong word…the yarn. Some complain of the barn in your lap while you knit (bits of hay and grass) but i can stand it when they knot two colours together randomly. Not adjacent colours in the colourway but just skip some colours and start another…nothing gradual just right in the middle of nowhere. Then if you have a little ocd like me you start pulling apart balls to match up the colourway…then those balls are destoyed. I have partials balls all over the place…not sure if i’ll be using too much noro in my future…not without a promise of no knots.

  3. Kim

    Have quite a bit in the stash for a couple of the infamous striped scarves, but have yet to cast on. Love the colors!

  4. Caitlin

    I love Noro for the colours but I dislike the slubbiness of it, especially the Kureyon, which is also too itchy for me. I do like Silk Garden Lite and Aya (which may be the same thing).

  5. donaji

    I’m a Noro lover, I don’t mind the bits of hay and grass in Kureyon and love the feel of silk garden, I’m knitting with Sekku (a lace weight) and it’s lovely!

  6. Andrea

    I’m currently working with some Noro Kureyon and it’s while it’s not as scratchy as I had anticipated, it could stand to be quite a bit softer. It’s so fun working with the Noro and being surprised by what colors come out next.

  7. Linda Cannon

    I didn’t think I would be aNoro lover until I made a hat for my daughter with silk garden. It ended up coming out gorgeous and she loved the colors in it. I actually started to like knitting with it after a while.

  8. michele

    Noro is only one of two sock yarns I will never knit with again. Too rough and slubby. Nice color changes though.

    CP’s mini mocha is the other, for anyone who cares. Love all of the rest of Crystal Palace. But mm is a one ply and underspun. It tore just pulling it off the skein.

  9. Erica

    I love Noro! The colorways totally make up for any lack of softness. Plus it is so fascinating to watch the color changes as the yarn knits up.

  10. ponka

    I am so excited for this pattern (and have been since the first sneak peek!)

    Now to save up some Noro money. . .

  11. Rae

    I have heard lots of good things(the colors) & bad (slivers) about Noro but funny enough I have never used Noro before I will have to get my hands on some. I can’t wait to see your next design.

  12. van

    I love Noro colors, but can’t stand the scratchiness. I can’t wait to see your design. Didn’t know you’re such a teaser :).

  13. Deepa

    I have a love/hate relationship with Noro. I don’t mind the hay flecks but the knots, ai yi yi the knots! They drive me crazy. But like someone else noted, nobody does color like Noro. Being an Indian transplanted to MN, I can always use more color over our long winter.

    I can’t wait to see your pattern. I hope it uses just one ball of Kureyon sock? I love the top photo in the vertical stack, with the orange and crimson. Gorgeous.

  14. Maya

    I’ve never knit with Noro but have always wanted to! it’s really hard to get in Australia – i havent visited a shop that stocks it! it’ve lovely to hear and read about it though : )

  15. KnitNFrog

    Noro’s Matsuri is not 100% animal fiber-free, but it is mostly cotton (87% Cotton, 13% Wool)! It is the only Noro I can use.

  16. Krista Maureen Smith-Moroziuk

    I love Noro and everything about it. I love the colors and would love to try all the colorways, and would love to try all the different yarns Noro produces except for the bulkier ones – not a big fan of using anything over 5mm needles. The only thing holding me back is the cost. I have a bunch of Noro sweater patterns I would love to cast on, but being a stay at home Mom it would cost me a fortune that I do not have right now.

  17. Brenda

    I love, love, love the colors in Noro. It IS like getting to the center of a Tootsie Pop – pulling out the colors from the center of the skeins.

    There are some things I would never knit out of it though, like a sweater. I just don’t think the striping is attractive all over your body. I was pretty addicted to the Noro striped scarves a couple of years ago. Knitting with two colors! Seeing which stripes lined up! So fun. I also made a log cabin blanket out of multiple colors of Kureyon. In my mind, that is the best way to showcase the Noro colors. I’m already thinking of making another.

    Yeah, and the knots drive me crazy too.

    One more thing – it’s great for felting (fulling). Like a watercolor, the way the colors blend.

  18. Lillie

    I’m with you. I’m not allergic, but I’m extremely sensitive to anything the least bit scratchy. I just went back and forth with Zappos to find just the right pair of Uggs – not cuteness or color or size – softness! I am looking to the day that some of that rich, colorful yarn art shows up in more than just wooly items, too. Thanks for chronilicing this for us!

  19. Linda M

    waiting impatiently for your pattern to use with my stashed Sekko. I have several lots of other Noro yarns stashed awaiting inspiration – the colors alone make me giddy!

  20. Jenny

    I’m one of the ones who doesn’t like Noro. I mean, sure, colors, but it’s just kind of…there for me. Which is great, as I have 20 balls of Silk Garden sitting in my stash. (This is what happens when you can buy a $12 ball for 10,000 won apiece in a poor economy. 10,000 won= about $5.)

  21. Pam

    Don’t have much Noro knitting experience, but I enjoy the color combos. Can’t wait to see the laceweight project you’ve been teasing us with + the 2nd pic in the vertical stack (same pattern, different weight?).

  22. Mary K. in Rockport

    I love Noro despite the random knots. Many have tried but no one has equaled the colors. I would love to do a sweater for me in Noro, but it’s too expensive.

  23. Shelda

    Wow! Those swatches are just gorgeous. I really have fun with Noro when I knit with it, until I have problems. Their colors are truly spectacular, but I agree with all your caveats. It’s frustrating to have it be so beautiful, and so problematic at the same time.

  24. Meredith C.

    I love Kureyon for felting, and Silk Garden for Entrelac. It softens a lot after washing. A felt project is a great way to enjoy Kureyon and have the character of the yarn (scratchy!) work for you.

  25. Cary

    I am one of those people who is so smitten with the colors of Noro that I just totally don’t mind the way it feels! I’m talking specifically here about Kureyon. I’m working (slowly) on the Lizard Ridge blanket which I just find to be the most cheerful blanket. I do think Silk Garden feels better. Overall, I am a fan!

  26. Erica

    I’m one of those people who dislikes Noro. One of my earliest knitting projects was the infamous Noro Scarf. By the time I got done sorting through the 4 skeins I bought, I had 8 re-wound balls because of knots. The pieces of hay were probably the least annoying, but still rough on my hands. And, when all was said and done, the scarf has been far too scratchy to actually wear.

    Love the colors to bits, but really dislike the yarn.

  27. Samina

    I love Noro’s colorways, but every time I’ve picked a ball up at the store I’ve put it back down. I’m not allergic to wool, but their stuff is way too scratchy & rough for me, too.

  28. Seanna Lea

    I have a love hate relationship with Noro. The first I ever got was a small amount (1 or 2 skeins) of Lily, which was both too pastel-y and not uniform enough. It was just a super splotchy color palette. I prefer the color look of the Kureyon and Silk Garden even if it is harder on my hands than other yarns.

  29. P J Evans

    Noro’s colors: Glorious color pr0n.

    Noro’s included trash: Nuisance.

    Noro’s knots: PITA.

    I knit a scarf from two balls of Silk Garden Lite last spring, and wound up taking the balls apart at the knots and rejoining them so the colors were more nearly matching. (I ended up with only one bad match, but I also changed the yarn direction a couple of times while matching ends.)

  30. pdxknitterati

    Noro colors, so pretty! I’m currently knitting with Silk Garden Lite (discontinued now, apparently). The yarn is scratchy and I hope it softens up. Haven’t come up to one of those out of nowhere knots…yet.

  31. Bernadette

    I love Noro, too. There are immitators, but the original is best! Hey, I am actually waiting for some Kureyon I ordered from Little Knits to arrive in the mail. They have some lovely colors of Noro Kureyon on sale – I chose color #195, which I think will be perfect for some hats for my sons and hubby… They also have other Noro yarns on sale – check ’em out. (I have ordered from them multiple times – very reliable, a wonderful shop.)

  32. tara

    I like knitting with Noro, for accesories mostly, and haven’t found even the Kureyon to be too scratchy. The hints at your new pattern look lovely!

  33. Hillary

    I had problems with Noro because of percieved scratchiness and my difficulties wearing many wools against my skin. Then I made an entrelac scarf for my brother from some Kureyon that was lingering in my stash. And I was hooked. It was one of the most entertaining knits ever and not just for me either. My husband loved watching the colors shift and asked (more like beged, pleaded, and demanded) for one of his own. Now I’ve got Lady Eleanor queued up for me. Love!

  34. Helen

    I love Noro. I have only knit once with it but I have a project waiting to be cast on. It is kinda rough on the hands but the results are well worth it.

  35. Marina McIntire

    I quite like Noro — Kureyon is a bit scratchy, but Taiyo! Oooooh, I am in love with Taiyo. So soft, so nice a hand, such a lovely colorway. Yummmm

  36. susan1006

    I love Noro colorways and I have found it softens up with a nice hair conditioner bath when it’s been knitted up. I do kind of micromanage it sometimes, and can make myself a little crazy with it, but it makes beautiful knitted things.

  37. Maryse

    I’ve knitted the Noro Striped Scarf two years ago with Silk Garden and loved it. It was so addictive! I hope to knit some socks some time maybe. So many things to knit, so little time…

  38. meghan

    A long time lurker emerges to say: the second knitted thing pictured is beautiful. Please, please, pretty please tell me (us) the colorway number or something?

    I can’t wait to hear more about these projects!

  39. whitney

    I fell in love with Noro when I knit my Stripes! sweater. I’m not entirely sold on the feel of Kureyon (and am not big on knitting with single-ply yarns), but the colors are just so fun!

  40. Suzy

    I am very intriqued by the fragments of shawl/scarf that I see in this and the previous entry! Is is one you’re designing? Can’t want to see the complete picture of it! Keep us posted!

  41. Maritza

    I love what *you’re* knitting with Noro!

    I’ve always been a bit meh about the texture of Kureyon and Slik Garden, but I know Taiyo is squishy and soft. Perhaps I’ll try it some time. The colors are a lot of fun.

  42. Pam Huang

    I love the Noro colorways but agree that the yarn quality can be a bit rustic. The new fingering weight Sekku is pretty soft.

  43. Karen

    I love Noro. To me, it is the ultimate in luxury. The colors make me swoon and, unlike you, I was born to wear animal fibers. Knitting with it is like drinking champagne!

  44. maryse

    well you know how i feel about noro. i love all of the colors and the more rustic the yarn the happier i am. i just want to eat it all up. heh.

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