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wintersfrost 09-15-2013 11:56 AM

How to choose the right type of yarn?
I'm planning on knitting a jumper and maybe some mitts for a backpacking trip to Europe, and I'd like to choose something lightweight but warm and hopefully durable so that it can take a bit of a beating. Does anyone have any advice on yarn material or type of stitch? Thanks!

claireweber 09-15-2013 02:55 PM

Hi and welcome to KH! I would think a combination of wool and cotton could possibly work for you. The cotton is durable and the wool is warm and lightens the cotton.

Wool/Cotton Blend

salmonmac 09-16-2013 03:54 AM

Welcome to Knitting Help.
I agree with Claire. I like wool or wool blends for sweaters. They're warm, breatheable, and durable. You can look for open-work patterns if you don't want something too warm or work on larger needles to lighten the finished fabric. Have fun on the backpacking trip!

wintersfrost 09-16-2013 11:02 AM

Thank you so much!

ArtLady1981 09-17-2013 05:48 PM

My only experience with a wool/cotton blend was a disaster. I used Noro Chirimen for a cardigan, Bettna, and it stretches out of shape when worn. Ugh. Since this is my second disaster, I've steered away from any animal fiber/cotton blends.

Noro Chirimen
60% Cotton
24% Silk
16% Wool

Maybe if the blend had been 60% wool and 16% would've been a different story. I dunno. But I don't want to take the risk. I like blends just fine...but I leave cotton out of the mix when wool is present.

Here is another disastrous blend of cotton and wool: Debbie Bliss Cotton Angora
The cardigan, Phoebe, stretched like crazy. I use it for a bathrobe when we're camping, and no one is around but me and DH.

Debbie Bliss Cotton Angora
80% Cotton, 20% Angora

wintersfrost 09-20-2013 10:18 AM

Thanks, ArtLady1981. What sort of yarn would you suggest?

ArtLady1981 09-20-2013 10:32 AM


Originally Posted by wintersfrost (Post 1386160)
Thanks, ArtLady1981. What sort of yarn would you suggest?

Elsebeth Lavold Silky Wool.

It's the most 'wearable' wool in the world. It's warm, but not stifling. It's durable. I've never regretted using EL Silky Wool. It's dk weight. Lots of yardage per hank, about 192 yds. It's affordable. It has lots of color choices. It's beautiful. It knits up nicely. Many vendors and LYS's carry it because it's become a staple in the yarn world.

knitluck 10-02-2013 05:53 PM

I love wool cotton blends. The wool adds elasticity while the cotton makes it a little more breathe-able. I would recommend Cascade Sierra. It's an affordable yarn that comes in a million colors and has a ton of patterns that would work for it. This particular yarn has a larger cotton content than wool content.

If you want something with a higher wool content, and thus more insulating, I would go with Rowan Wool Cotton, which is a 50-50 wool cotton blend. However that is a pricey yarn so it would be an expensive sweater.

Hope you find something you like -a wool bamboo blend might be nice. Can't wait to find out what you choose :)

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