Sunday, April 22, 2012

New Yarns Available at Peaypatch
I promised some new cotton yarns for my store, and the above picture is a sample.  These yarns are especially designed for summer clothing and accessories.  I was very excited to get the KnitPick catalog and learn about these.  Knitwear for the summer?  I'd never thought of that before.

I have four 50 ounce balls of each of these yarns.  Three of them, the two blue shades and the orange one are CotLin - a mixture of 70% cotton and 30% linen.  Each ball contains 123 yards with US 5 - 7 needles recommended.  Thanks to the linen content, these yarns get softer with each wash, and the fabric you make actually drapes.  I certainly hadn't thought of that before!  Officially, the colors are Hydrangea, Conch, and Seafoam.  Four balls ought to be enough to make a summer shell.  The cotton fibers will absorb moisture and pull it away from your body.

The fourth yarn - the pinky-purple one - is what is called Comfy Worsted, 75 % cotton and 25% acrylic.  This yarn will allow the garment's shape to hold longer than cotton alone would and provides some elasticity.  Slightly heavier than the Cotlin, each ball contains 109 yards, and US 6 - 9 needles are recommended.

Naturally, I ordered some yarn to try out myself!  I economized by choosing a cotton boucle yarn that is being discontinued.  This color is called lilac, and the recommended needle size is US 5 - 6.  Because I only bought four balls and never underestimate my size, I decided to use US 10 circular needles.  I cast on 100 stitches to form half of a camisole, and it appears this is a good width to make the garment in four pieces - front, back, and straps.  To prevent the large sections from rolling, I started out with five rows of seed stitch and am doing 6 seed stitches at each edge of the fabric.

Like all yarn made for mail order rather than sale in a store, the ball you see is compacted very tightly.  It is finer than the cotton yarns I've become accustomed to and is interesting to work with.

You will have noticed that all the yarns I chose to stock specify medium needles.  I deliberately did not order any 'fingering' yarn.  Yes, these work up wonderfully in baby clothes, but I think beginning knitters might have as much trouble with tiny yarns as I did.  When I first began knitting again, I ordered some alpaca yarn, since I'd read about it but never seen or felt any.  Unfortunately, it is a 'baby' alpaca/wool mix, and it simply twisted and tangled up when I tried to knit or crochet it.  It does, however, make a first class embroidery thread.

In addition to the new yarns, I also have a bottle of iridescent medium available at Peaypatch for painters.

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