How to choose your wool ?

Laines Cheval Blanc

How to choose your wool?

More than a taste story, choosing your wool is essential to knit. They are mainly distinguished by their weights and materials which are favorable or not to the pattern that we wish to knit. Here are our tips to make the right choice!

The materials

Natural, animal or vegetable.

Sheep's wool: There are a multitude of them depending on the breed and the provenance. It does not have a reputation for being particularly soft but it is strong and durable. An ideal material to knit a large winter vest, without forgetting its unbeatable value for money.

Merino: This successful wool comes from an Australian sheep breed. It is very soft, round, resistant and very warm. It is especially pleasant to wear.

The Alpaca: This wool that comes from the animal of the same name comes from North America. It is a warm and quality wool with a price that stays quite affordable. The "Baby Alpaga" wool that comes from the wool of the young is of course softer than the one obtained from the fleeces of the adults.

Angora: It comes from rabbits that have this name. It is a very fluffy and very warm wool. You will understand, the long hair of this wool will not be used to knit lace!

Kashmir: No doubt the most noble material of all. Indeed, it comes from the closest part of the skin of a particular goat of the Himalayas. Its quantity is therefore limited and spinning is a more complex process, so this luxurious thread is also one of the most expensive on the market. The rarity of its sweetness will quickly make you love it!

Camel: Yes, we now find camel wool! It is extremely warm, light and soft. It is considered, in the textile industry, as a luxury material. It is generally used in the production of fine garments.

Cotton: It is created from the cotton flower. This lightweight yarn is perfect for summer patterns or the layette.

Linen: From a plant, it is a soft and very light thread. With a high resistance and a moisture-absorbing power without equivalent, linen provides a feeling of well-being to those who wear it.

The mohair: From angora goats, it is a fine and fluffy thread. It has the characteristic of joining to its thermal insulating power (of cold as of hot) a very great lightness. It is often associated with another thicker thread.

Silk: It comes from silkworm cocoons. It is extremely bright, supple and pleasant to the touch. It is also appreciated for its quality of thermal insulation of winter as well as summer.

Synthetic materials

Acrylic: It can be used as a complete replacement for wool. There are 100% acrylic balls. It is a completely synthetic wool derived from a chemical process. It is very resistant and brings an unbeatable quality-price ratio.

Nylon: It is used to make certain yarns more resistant. It is a plastic material that does not fear friction.

 

THE WEIGHT

Lace weight (2-ply) Needles  1,5 – 3 mm  It is the finest wool. Shawl knit for example

Fingering weight (3-ply) Needles  2,5 – 3 mm   The layette or "wool for socks"

Sport weight (5-ply)  Needles  3 – 4mm  Knit cover, shawl, sweater ...

Double  Knitting  (8-ply)  Needles  4 – 4,5 mm Poncho knitting for example

Worsted weight  (10-ply) Needles  4 – 5 mm Knit vest, sweater, scarf ...

uper bulky weight  Needles 10 – 12 mm Very warm garment knit, hat for example

Chunky weight  (12-ply) Needles 6 – 7 mm Knit cover, vest, snood ...

TO SUM UP :

If you do not know which wool to choose, trust your pattern. The advice of the designer is thoughtful and her/his choices are justified. However, you can give your imagination free rein by remaining consistent in your choices. For example, single wool socks will not last in time and will likely end in holes. In winter, opt for warm wools like angora wool, alpaca or mohair that will bring you softness and warmth. For the summer, prefer the vegetable fibers, less warm with a texture that will offer you a lot of freedom.

 


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