Erfahrungsbericht: Hamburger Wollfabrik
As a side note my mom mentioned Hamburger Wollfabrik in 2010. She said that there was a kind of “yarn outlet store” near the Elbbrücken in Hamburg and that we could, if we like, go there, the next time we were visiting them in Hamburg. That was in summer 2010. We made our first visit to Hamburger Wollfabrik, which is located at Brandshofer Deich, in October 2010.
You wouldn’t guess the amounts of yarn behind this small sign on the outside of the door. We usually get asked for directions from other people outside of town when walking the last meters from the bus stop to the yarn store. Hamburger Wollfabrik is located in a more industrial area, not a small shopping alley with lots of handmade stores around. Plain said: there isn’t much around there at all.
The system by which HWF sells their yarns is a bit different. Unlike most yarn stores they sell their yarns on cones. Only their sock yarns are balls. Everything else is on big cones with single threads – more or less thin, depending on the fiber.
Buying a yarn is basically putting together your own mixture. You decide for a color and the weight of your yarn. You choose a tone, know what weight you aim at and let the stuff put the desired thickness of yarn on a cone. They offer different fibers, cashmere, merino, cotton etc. So, when choosing your yarn, you can also mix different fibers. On top you can also mix different colors to get a mixed product.
Now, which color again were you looking for?
We usually have the problem of being overwhelmed by the varieties of yarns and colors. I found it extremely helpful to go their with a list, at least in my head. Which patterns do I want to knit, what weight do they require and which color am I looking for. And often enough I still stand in front of those shelves and am stumped for a specific colorway – light red, not so light red, a light red with the tendency towards a more reddish red etc. …
A major advantage of those cones is, of course, you don’t have loose ends because of yarn balls being used up. The difference to other yarns is that this yarn isn’t twisted. Knitwear does look different. Not better or worse. Different. And it is different when knitting. Missing a thread will result in a thinner stitch and a loose thread in the knitted piece. But I never had difficulties with that.
I personally like yarns from HWF a lot. But I do not knit with their yarns exclusively. As usual different yarn companies have different advantages. Either you like them or they are important to you or you actually do not like them or they make no difference. This is all a personal decision and is part of your personal preferences.
If you’re not set on one yarn company and like to try new yarns, go for it!
This is my personal report about Hamburger Wollfabrik. I was not paid for this article. I first went there in 2010 and came back for several visits ever since. My last visit to HWF was on October 31st. 2013. I wrote this report after comments I got to this post. Projects knitted with Hamburger Wollfabrik yarns can be found here.