A great source of affordable yarn, tools and patterns, Elann ships out of Delta BC. Which is good news for us Canadian knitters. It means the shipping is low, and super speedy. My orders from Elann have never taken longer than 2 business days.
Elann brings in designer yarn, like rowan yarn, Sublime, Tahki, Louisa Harding, Berroco, to name a few. And they source their own lines of yarn, like Elann Sierra Aran, Peruvian Baby Silk, Bamboo Classic, Baby Cashmere, and Peruvian Highland Chunky. These yarns are great on their own merit, but they also make affordable alternatives for more expensive yarns. And if you get on the Elann e-mail list, you'll receive notifications about full bag sales. Elann's full bag sales mean you need to buy a whole bag, about 10 balls per bag, but the discount is usually significant.
And Elann carries more than yarn. They have a good selection of tools too. For example, they have Namaste bags, ball winders, and swifts.
One thing about buying yarns from Elann and knit picks is that you won't often see these yarns in magazines and high-end knitting books. So if you've treated yourself to a full bag of Elann yarn, and are wondering what to do with it, try searching for the yarn in Ravelry's patterns section. Many designers will suggest alternate yarns. And, you can also try using Ravelry's pattern ideas tab in the Yarns section. Find the yarn, go to its details, then click the pattern ideas tab.
Here are pattern ideas for some of Elann's yarns:
Peruvian Sierra Aran 80% Wool, 20% Alpaca, Aran Weight. Alpaca softens wool nicely, and gives it a cozy fuzzy halo. The color selection of Sierra Aran is well done, I've tried several and haven't been disappointed yet. You can see this yarn in the England Ave and Sweet Oak Cardigans.
Peruvian Highland Chunky 100% Wool, Bulky Weight. Great colors in this yarn. And looks beautiful knitted up. Check out the Red Oak jacket by Julia Trice.
Peruvian Baby Silk 80% Alpaca 20% Silk, Fingering Weight. Pretty in Fair Isle and lace.
Pegasus 52% Mercerized Cotton, 48% Rayon, Worsted Weight.
Bamboo Classic 51% Cotton 49% Bamboo, Sport Weight. This is the yarn I used for the Tricksy Tank. Great warm weather knitting. The cotton and bamboo have different amounts of sheen, and when plied together have some depth.
Incense 50% Wool, 25% Bamboo, 25% Silk, Worsted Weight. This is pretty to work with, little bit of sheen, little bit of drape without sacrificing bounce. I love the periwinkle blue used in Passiflora by Julie Turjoman.
Lara 100% Mercerized Cotton, Sport Weight. I have some of this in my stash, makes a very pretty fabric with fantastic stitch definition.
Silken Kydd 70% Super Kid Mohair, 30% Silk, Lace Weight. This looks like a generic version of Rowan's popular KidSilk Haze. If you've used this type of yarn, you'll know that a little goes a long way. Hmmm, must get some of this. Writing these pages about yarn is bad for my stash.