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Freia Yarns

After working for a few years as an independent knitwear pattern designer, Tina Whitmore decided to take the leap into creating her own yarns. In 2010 she enlisted friend to teach her — mostly over the phone(!) ins and outs of yarn dyeing. She took to it quickly and jumped rapidly from creating self-striping yarns to focusing on gradients.

She brought these yarns to a few trade shows and quickly sold through all that she had. It was clear she was onto something! Gradient yarn was a color method completely new to the market, and Freia Yarns set the stage for one of the most marked and copied trends to hit the yarn industry.

Developing relationships with U.S.-based mills, she committed herself to making Freia Fine Handpaint Yarns into more than just a project on the side. In 2018, she moved the business from the busy, tech-focused San Francisco Bay Area to the more sleepy but creatively vibrant Berkshires of Massachusetts. She adds: “We recently expanded our offerings to include certified ethically raised Shaniko merino yarns, bringing us to over a dozen yarn bases. Still a small indie dyeing company at heart, today we’ve grown large enough to supply yarn to stores all over the world while keeping production at a very hands-on level. We are a small, hard-working team who all share a love of yarn and have the same dedication to quality and customer service.”

Gradient yarns are still new to many knitters, and Tina says it can be a struggle for customers to decide what to make with their beautiful yarn cakes. To that end, she spends a fair amount of time on pattern development and enjoys working with outside designers on their concepts using Freia Yarns. She continues to bring out new colors every year, with inspiration coming from the world around her — whether it’s a plant in her backyard or the pyramids of Egypt.

With over 100 colorways (and counting!), more than a dozen yarn options and a thorough selection of patterns, Freia Yarns has something for everyone!

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