View Full Version : Durable yarn for felted socks and gloves
02-29-2012, 10:50 PM
Hi, I would like to make pair of felted gloves and socks comparable to dachstein.
They will be used outdoors in snow and ice for mountaineering. I want a tight windproof felt as they will be used in temp as low as *0F. What’s the most durable yarn available?
I was looking at cascade 220, wool of Andes, fisherman. Can someone compare them?
What are other variables involved in making a durable fabric?
I have been told that*
1)thicker/stronger you want it, the farther you want to felt it.
2)knit with 2 strands at a time.
3)use size 11 needle.
Any other tips?
I am completely new to knitting. This will be my first knitting project.
03-01-2012, 12:32 AM
Techknitter has some excellent hints for making these mittens.
Jan in CA
03-01-2012, 01:32 AM
I've not made any felted mittens, but I have felted Cascade 220 and Wool of the Andes they both felt nicely. A blend may not felt quite as well so I suggest pure wool.
03-01-2012, 07:34 AM
Thanks. I like the idea of super wash cuffs.
I think unbleached, non dyed worsted/ Aran yarns would felt best, and be most durable and water resistant.
I know of cascade Eco, knitpicks bare, and fisherman. Is there anything else?
Should I double strand if using a bulky yarn? Would that make felted gloves very stiff?
03-01-2012, 10:11 AM
Double stranding bulky yarn would mean you'd have to use larger needles. It's hard enough to knit on size 11 or larger with superbulky yarns. I can't imagine trying to do it with two bulkys. It depends on the climate of the place you want to wear them. Here in Wisconsin, temps can get down to 40 below zero. Even at those temps, a single stranded mitten with bulky or superbulky can get too warm. You sweat and end up having to take them off. I like to use worsted weights even with those low temps. We layer, putting one of those small stretchy manufactured magic gloves underneath. The advantage is that you can add them when it gets cold and take them out if you get too warm. You could knit a second pair in a fingering weight wool. Wool stays warm even when wet. Read the yarn labels. I bought Lamb's Pride bulky thinking it was all wool, but it's not. It's a blend of wool and mohair, which is goat's hair. The mittens I knit with it aren't as warm as all wool. Mohair sheds like crazy and the hairs get all over everything. Go all wool. You'll probably get a lot of different opinions on this, but I think my mittens and gloves are warmer when I do them with a US size 4 or 5 rather than larger needles. If you look at the vintage mitten patterns from the 40's and 50's, most of the patterns are done on size 1-3 needles.
*Not sure if you use Farenheit or Celsius where you are, but -40 (40 below zero) is close to absolute zero, to put it in perspective.
03-01-2012, 10:29 AM
I am planning to felt them. I was told that I need a much large needle so that it felt tightly....
03-01-2012, 10:31 AM
This year we've had a mild winter. But most of the time, we're used to subzero temps. We layer, with long underwear, t shirts, sweat shirts, and garments we can add or take off as the temps change. You stay warmer that way. If you're going to spend any time outdoors, I'd suggest a goose down jacket, preferably something that's water and snow resistant. I prefer mine with a hood to cut down on the wind and keep my neck warm. I've had to unzip my goose down jacket at times because it's been too warm. They can be a little expensive, but it's well worth it.
03-01-2012, 10:48 AM
Thanks but I am asking advice about knitting, not layering. We have BPL for that.
03-01-2012, 10:52 AM
Just trying to be helpful. Sorry I got you upset.
03-01-2012, 11:01 AM
Hehe. I am not upset. Just confused what yarn to pick. Can you help with that?
03-01-2012, 11:12 AM
I would say 100% wool. Like the other posters said, Cascade and Wool of the Andes are good ones. Wool of the Andes is similar to Cascade but a significant savings. I thought it split, but worth it for the price. Something you may want to consider is double knitting or Fair Isle knitting to double layer these and make them warmer. Here's an any yarn, any size needle mitten pattern I found helpful using the Fair Isle technique. I especially liked it because the fit was great. I've been knitting one size fits all mitten pattern but had a problem with the cuffs sagging. I never realized it before reading this tutorial, but my hands are an odd size. I measured like they said and found I have small wrists and wide hands. The pair I knit with this formula fit me perfectly. Another thing I would suggest is three inch cuffs to keep your hands warmer and snow from getting inside your coat.
03-01-2012, 11:25 AM
Rather than layering, I think double insulation is the word I'm looking for with these Fair Isle mittens.
03-01-2012, 11:32 AM
I came across a cuff treatment in another forum that also works well. When I work a standard ribbing for mittens, the cuffs stretch out after some wear and gap. Another knitter said that there is an alternate way of knitting cuffs as long as you don't need to fold them back. She does either k1, p1 or k2, p2 ribbing, your choice, on the right side rows. The wrong side rows are all purl. This is for two needle knitting. If you're doing this in the round, you would do a ribbing row followed by an all knit row. I just tried this on a pair of mittens and it leaves a nice looking cuff, still stretchy enough to get your hand in, but doesn't stretch out of shape. I like to use a German Twisted cast on for mittens, gloves, and hats. KH has a tutorial for this in the top tabs under the Casting On category.
Jan in CA
03-01-2012, 03:04 PM
I believe Patons Classic Wool felts very well, too. Forgot about that till now.
Another thought is wool thrummed mittens. You use roving as you are knitting to line them with this fluff that is really warm.