Estivale yarn is a blend of hemp fibres which is blended with sparkly sequins and available in bright summer colours. The yarn that I chose was Estivle abyss, a lovely bright blue. It costs £4.95 for a 50g skein and is 21% hemp, 29% polyester and 50% acrylic. It is labelled as machine washable (but I don't trust myself when it comes to putting knitted garments in the washing machine, so I'll probably hand wash it!)
The pattern that we chose was the 3/4 Sleeve Openwork Sweater from the Mag. 172 Spring/Summer Collection. We knitted it in the medium size and it just went into seven balls of yarn. It was quite a difficult pattern for me to follow and I must admit that I needed a lot of help from my Mum. She's a very experienced knitter and even she didn't find it that easy! She also modified the design a little to make the length slightly shorter and to add some shaping.
The yarn itself is soft and slightly silky, with a bit of a string feel due to the hemp content. The sequins in the yarn add an unusual, quirky touch. It was enjoyable to knit with, and the texture works really well with this open work pattern, meaning that the detail shows up with some nice, crisp definition.
I was very pleasantly surprised with how pretty the yarn looked when it was knitted up. You can see the detail in the picture below, and see just how clear the patterning is. You can also see that the sequins are dispersed liberally throughout. The beautiful cobalt blue colour is very bright, it's difficult to do it justice in the photographs.
This is probably a yarn that needs something worn underneath it to feel comfortable against the skin, but with a pattern like this I'll have a vest top underneath anyway, so it's not a problem! The sequins add a real sparkle to the sweater.
I received the Bergere de France yarn to knit this sweater in exchange for a review, as well as some extra for a future project!