The mYak Story
If you've ever used mYak's yarn in your crafting, you already know what a joy it is to work with. But if you're unfamiliar with the journey this yarn makes from Tibet to Italy to Ann Arbor, learning a few more details of the mYak story might well enhance the experience of creating with it.
Paola and Andrea founded mYak after years of humanitarian work on the Tibetan Plateau (read their story here). Having lived and worked with the nomadic herders in the region, they created a locally based cooperative that aims to both support the community and bring unique fibers to yarn lovers around the world. mYak, working exclusively with unique natural fibers born on the Tibetan Plateau, has created a certified, traceable, sustainable production chain. The fibers, among the world’s rarest and most refined, are treated with the utmost care throughout their journey from Tibet to your hands.
The animals are raised following traditional Tibetan nomadic pastoral practices, which avoid overcrowding and ensure the longevity of healthy pastures. The goats and baby yaks are not sheared; their down is combed after their first winter, right before it would shed spontaneously on the grasslands at the start of spring--a completely natural change of coat. The sheep are sheared with traditional scissors (no electricity), and a layer of wool is left behind to avoid going too close to the animals' skin and to ensure that they can stay warm.
The fiber is cleaned manually, with the finest fibers shipped to Italy for processing at small workshops in the Biellese area, at the foot of the Alps, where textile culture has been preeminent for centuries. The yarn’s natural properties and color are preserved, while polluting agents are avoided.
At Spun, we offer their Baby Yak Medium and Lace as well as Tibetan Cloud, a DK-weight cashmere-soft yarn made from the wool of an ancient breed of Tibetan sheep. (New this week in the world of Tibetan Cloud is Tulipano, a deep ruby red.)
Want to Give mYak a Try? May We Suggest . . .
Designed by Kate Davies and knit by Carol in mYak Tibetan Cloud
Carol was borderline insufferable while knitting this (she admits it), in full swoon over both the pattern (which follows Julie H's 80/20 rule: 80% mindless, 20% challenging) and the yarn (soft and smooth and springy). Kate Davies's cheerful Lilias Day, a yoke pullover featuring a Selbu floral garland motif, may be worked to either a cropped or a standard length, making ideal use of the unique, saturated palette and sweet hand of mYak Tibetan Cloud (100% fine Tibetan wool).