Rainbow Persian is the new single-strand wool from Rainbow Gallery. This new thread currently comes in 32 colors and was just introduced last month. The wool is from New Zealand and each cards has 10 yards.
I know what you are thinking — “Doesn’t Persian Wool have 3 strands?” Yes most brands do, but the strands are so easily separated, there is no reason why a company couldn’t save us that trouble and package it as single strands. After all this is the way we use it most of the time.
The thread is like a single strand of Persian in that it is a two-ply soft wool thread. The plies are not spun tightly enough to be useable if separated.
Because this thread comes on cards, you can cut the length you need for the stitches you want. That means it will be easy to cut long lengths for Hilton Stitches and other yarn hogs. It is a bit more trouble if you need to use multiple strands.
The card says that it can be used for needlepoint for 10 to 18 mesh. I tested it on 18 mesh on the canvas pictured above. I used Basketweave and the thread was lovely. Easy to use, it covered the green which was a different color beautifully. I have not tried it on 14 mesh, but I expect equally good results. I also expect great results for textured stitches.
If you will be using this thread for Bargello on 13 or 14 mesh or on 10 or 12 mesh, you will need to use more strands.
I didn’t mention one of the best things about this thread — the price! With an MSRP well under $2, it’s going to be very popular. Another wonderful aspect is that it should be easy to find. With Rainbow Gallery’s wide distribution, many stores should opt to carry it.
The Wool Wars
Wool, especially Persian Wool, was the primary thread for needlepoint for a long time. With a wider availability of other threads, wool dropped out of fashion. The various troubles of Paternayan (now over) didn’t help the fortunes of this wonderful fiber.
In the past few years several makers and brands of Persian Wool have come to market. This has greatly helped stitchers think about wool again, but it has posed a real difficulty to shop owners. Bringing in any new thread is often an expensive proposition for them. The hundreds of colors in most lines of wool takes up lots of space in the shop and costs lots of money.
For these reasons, many shops have decided to wait on these threads until the market for them is more settled.
I think with the small number of colors in this line and the relatively low cost of investment with a company they already use will mean you’ll see lots of Rainbow Persian out there.
And I’m very glad for that — it’s a great thread.