Three Bears Yarn Review; Blue (Mermaid Cove) Aran Yarn Sample

A few weeks ago I received some yarn samples from a new British yarn company called Three Bears Yarn, who are based in Lancashire. I was very excited about this new company as soon as I heard about them as they are specialising in cotton yarn 🙂 and as you might know it’s one of the main yarn fibres I use being vegan. I was very eager to try out some of their yarn and I was lucky enough to be chosen to test a selection of their yarns, I couldn’t wait to start using them.

Three Bears Yarn - Yarn Samples.

Three Bears Yarn – Yarn Samples.

Today I would like to share my review on the first yarn sample I tried from the selection I was sent, which is from their aran weight yarn range and the colour I was sent is called Mermaid Cove (although I often refer to it as blue as I didn’t know the official name till recently). I use aran weight yarn a lot so this was the one I was most eager to try, especially as I have only found a few cotton aran weight yarns on the market so it’s great to see a new option for me.

The above photos are thumbnails, if you would like to see the larger photo click on the photo you want to see and you should see the full size photo.

I mostly use aran weight yarn for Amigurumi so it made sense that I choose an Amigurumi pattern to try their yarn with, as if I was to buy it this would be what I would use it for mainly. The pattern I chose to use with this sample is called Huggy Monster By Smartapple Creations 🙂 I knew I had just enough yarn from my sample to make him and I used a little of my stock yarn for the few area’s requiring different yarn colours.

This yarn ended up getting a thorough testing as when I choose this pattern I wanted to add my own twist by using the back loop only method. This meant I ended up having to undo some of my work and re-do it several times until I got my project right, which some yarns don’t cope that well with. I was really impressed with how well this yarn coped with everything I put it through, in fact I would say it coped better than any other aran yarn I use.

The above photos are thumbnails, if you would like to see the larger photo click on the photo you want to see and you should see the full size photo.

The best thing about their aran weight yarn is it isn’t at all splitty, it’s really stable and this is fantastic. Even when I had to undo my work and re-do it, sometimes several times the yarn still coped really well. It stayed stable throughout my project and showed very little signs of splitting, and this was usually when I had been re-working the yarn several times but even then it was hardly noticeable. I was really impressed with this and it’s definitely the main highlight of this yarn, as most of the other aran weight yarn I use is splitty so it was a dream to work with another aran weight yarn that wasn’t.

When I was testing this yarn it was hard for me not to compare it to what I am used to using for these type of projects, I think this was a good thing though as I can include my experiences in this review. The yarn I would usually use for Amigurumi when I need aran weight yarn is Drops Paris 100% cotton yarn or Rico Creative Cotton Aran 100% cotton yarn and both of these are splitty yarns, I’d say Drops Paris is the most splitty yarn. I am so used to working with splitty yarn so it was lovely when it came to using Three Bears Yarn as it wasn’t.

The above photos are thumbnails, if you would like to see the larger photo click on the photo you want to see and you should see the full size photo.

During making my project I was mostly using my yarn sample but I needed to use some Drops Paris yarn for the spikes and the eyes so I went from working with Three Bears Yarn to Drops Paris. I have to say when I did that and I was busy making my spikes I couldn’t help but think I wish this was Three Bears Yarn I was working with. I found myself thinking this without even thinking about it if that makes sense, you can really feel the difference when you’ve gone from working with a non spitty yarn to one that is, thankfully they were only small components so it wasn’t too bad but I sure wish I’d had a stock of Three Bears yarn to use instead!

Whilst I am comparing these yarns to each other I would like to point out another difference between them, this time you could say it’s a negative rather than a positive reason. It’s the only negative thing I really have to say about Three Bears Yarn though and that is that the yarn isn’t as soft. I do love the softness of Drops Paris and Rico Creative Cotton Aran but at the same time I don’t like the splittiness of their yarns. So it’s a weigh up to what you’d rather compromise on I suppose. Three Bears Yarn aran weight yarn is still soft but isn’t anywhere near as soft as the ones I use. For me this is a shame but at the same time it wouldn’t stop me using their aran weight yarn, it would just depend on what project I was making. For example I loved making Amigurumi with their yarn, it was a dream and I loved not having to cope with splitty yarn which is much harder to work with. On the other hand if I was making a hat or a blanket I think I would still go back to the yarns I use now, as they are much softer and when your making blankets especially you want it to be nice and soft and fluffy.

I really enjoyed testing this yarn and seeing what it was like, over all I think it has a lot of positives and I adore the colour they have got with the yarn. Yes I did come across one negative but as I said this wouldn’t stop me using their yarn, I would just choose it for certain projects.

Saying that I did recently find out a huge bonus about using Three Bears Yarn which I have to say could make me choose it even more often, because as far as I know no other yarn companies do this. What is this you ask? Three Bears Yarn offer the following yarn weights; 4ply, DK and Aran and in this range they offer the same colours. This means that you could make projects with multiple yarn weights and you know the colours would match, as they even mention on their website that their colours are closely colour matched. This is a huge bonus in my opinion and it’s something that would make me choose them over another company when I buy my yarn for certain projects. Let me share an example with you…

As you know I choose to make a Huggy Monster with my aran weight sample and I made the original one from the pattern. The pattern also includes how to make the rest of the family and when I saw the designers photo of the family how could I resist?

Photo Copyright: Smartapple Creations / Maarja Härsing-Värk. **Clicking on this photo will take you to the designers website.**

As you can see from the designers photo above her yarn shades have had to vary slightly, this is because as far as I know no other company offers the same colour range across different weights of yarn. For me to make a monster family like above I will need a DK weight for Mummy and a 4ply weight for the baby and thanks to Three Bears Yarn I will be able to buy exactly the same colour yarn to make them 🙂 meaning they will all colour match. Isn’t this the best bonus ever? It’s certainly something that makes me really happy and excited 🙂 and also I know I’d struggle if the colours didn’t match due to my OCD. So this fantastic bonus makes my OCD very happy and I can’t wait to make the rest of my monster family now!

Three Bears Yarn are launching their range of yarns on the 1st of October 2015 and I will definitely be buying more of this yarn to complete my monster family :-). I will definitely come back and show you when I have as I think they are going to look fantastic and a big thank you to this wonderful company for offering this fantastic service.

Below is photos of their yarn range that will be launching in just a few weeks and with a few details you might like to know;

Affection – A versatile range of 100% cotton yarns in DK, 4PLY and Aran weights, available in 50g balls and 225g cones. **Click on photo to go to their website**

Chenille – A range of luxurious 100% cotton chenille yarn in DK weight available in 7 striking colours on 225g cone or 50g ball. **Click on the photo to go to their website**

The pricing structure for this yarn is done differently to most companies, it will be the same cost whether you buy 4ply, DK or aran and its sold per weight. 50g balls at £3.49 and 225g cones at £12.99. These prices are correct at the time of this  blog post.

50g balls; Aran 85m, DK 165m, 4ply 225m and DK Chenille 96m.

225g cones; Aran 382.5m, DK 742.5m, 4ply 1,012.5m and DK Chenille 432m.

One last thing before I end this review, I’d like to mention cost as I do think for most people this affects their yarn purchases. As you can see from above I have mentioned the cost of the yarn and it’s the same price whether you choose DK or 4ply for example. I have also included how many metres of yarn is included per ball or cone (information supplied by Three Bears Yarn) and this helps when comparing prices to other yarns on the market.

I have just reviewed their aran weight yarn, so when it comes on sale the usual retail price will be £3.49 for 5og/85m or £12.99 for 225g/382.5m. Earlier in my review I mentioned what other aran weight yarns I usually use, which are Drops Paris and Rico Creative Cotton Aran. I also use another aran weight yarn which I forgot to mention which is called Lily Sugar n Cream. When it comes to comparing price there is quite a difference and this could be an issue for some, as I know it’s something I will have to bare in mind myself. I will mention below the costs of the other yarns I use and their stats for easy comparison;

Drops Paris 100% Cotton Yarn

50g/75m. RRP £1.79/£1.80. Current Price WW & LK £1.05.

Prices taken from Wool Warehouse and Love Knitting (opens in a new tab/window). Prices correct at time of blog post.

Rico Creative Cotton Aran 100% Cotton Yarn

50g/85m. RRP £1.99/£1.79. Current Price WW £1.79/ LK £1.85.

Prices taken from Wool Warehouse and Love Knitting (opens in a new tab/window). Prices correct at time of blog post.

Lily Sugar n Cream 100% Cotton Yarn (based on their solids range, also known as The Original)

70.9g/109m. RRP £ unknown. Current Price WW £2.29 / D £2.49

Above prices taken from Wool Warehouse Deramores (opens in a new tab/window). Prices correct at time of blog post.

400g/645m. RRP £ unknown. Current Price WW £9.99 / D £14.99

Above prices taken from Wool Warehouse / Deramores (opens in a new tab/window). Prices correct at time of blog post.

Quick side note: I didn’t mention this in my review above, when I compared the other yarns to the Three Bears Yarn aran weight yarn. Lily Sugar n Cream is a stable yarn and is soft too, different softness to the other yarns but still nice and soft. I love this yarn for being stable as it makes it easier to use, when comparing to the others I use I’d say the strand is a bit thicker too. I enjoy using this yarn and it’s fantastic for many projects.

As you can see there is a big price difference and Three Bears Yarn is unfortunately coming out more expensive. At points it’s almost twice as expensive for the same amount of yarn and for me personally this is an issue for me. I have to bare in mind the cost of the yarn when I am making my projects especially if it’s a bigger project as it’s then the costs really escalate. I really do love Three Bears Yarn and what they offer, but I have to be honest and say the cost will stop me buying it as much as the other yarns I use. I think it goes back to earlier in my review when I am comparing the yarns and say I will have to think about when I buy this yarn and what I am looking for out of the yarn. I hope that makes sense? for certain projects it will certainly be worth paying more for as they offer some things the other yarns don’t, at the end of the day it will come down to compromise and what I feel I can afford for the project I am making.

I hope you have found this review helpful, I did question whether to include how I feel about the price and what the prices were but after thinking about it I decided it was important to include. When I do a review I think about what my readers would like to know and that if I was looking at this review as a reader what would I want to know. I’ve seen reviews that do include prices and ones that don’t and what I noticed from the comments on these reviews is most wanted to know about price and what the reviewer felt about it. If you have any other questions about this yarn that I have not mentioned please free to ask and if I can help I will :-).

Oops I nearly forgot, for those that want to check out my Huggy Monster project on Ravelry, you can do so here (opens in a new tab/window).

I will be back again soon with reviews on the rest of the yarn samples that Three Bears Yarn sent me, I am already busy working on them so you shouldn’t have to wait long. In fact I have already finished the second yarn sample and I am onto my third, so I’ll be writing up and publishing the next review very soon!

Happy Crafting,

Rosie x

Disclaimer: These are my own honest opinions and I have not been paid by Three Bears Yarn to write this review. They have provided the yarn samples free of charge but there was no conditions attached to this. It’s been my pleasure to test and share the results of these yarn samples with you.