To read more about the fascinating Orenburg shawl history, click here:
In 'Gossamer Webs' by Galina Khmeleva & Carol R. Noble (Interweave Lace Knitting 1998), the authors list Shetland Cobweb 1 ply (350m per 25g) as a suitable alternative yarn. I'd like now to recommend our new Gossamer Mohair, which is an even finer yarn at 750m/820 yards per 25g and so is closer to the best Orenburg yarn. Additionally, like their down yarn, this has the typical mohair 'halo' or fuzziness for extra loft and warmth.
It has taken us a long time to source this yarn and we are very proud to have secured it for you. It is a mix of 70% Mohair and 30% Linen (for additional strength). Again going back to Shetland lace, the Victorian Shetland knitters also used Merino wool ('Pyrenees'), Alpaca and Mohair as well as the local Shetland wool for their lace work, so those keen to try this yarn for their Shetland lace mohair work can rest assured that they are not breaking too much with tradition - but we'd recommend using a larger size needle and swatching first!