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Old 06-04-2007, 01:14 AM   #1
aylaanne
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Can you felt alpaca? Should I use a different yarn? (water bottle cozy)
Would you want to? I have a skein of chunky baby alpaca, and I have a 1qt water bottle that desperately needs a cozy (I take it everywhere, it's sweating and it's hard to attach to things). I'm thinking of knitting a cozy for this water bottle out of my skein of alpaca, because I only have the one skein and I got it on sale so I doubt I could get more of the same dye lot. Since the bottle is sweating, I am imagining that with use, the cozy will self-felt. Am I smoking crack? Should I do this with some acrylic-wool blend I have in my stash? The alpaca is SO much nicer to knit with and will be so much more friendly for carrying around, I should think.

Thoughts? Opinions? Curses?
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Old 06-04-2007, 01:17 AM   #2
Susan P.
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You can only felt with 100% wool or alpaca etc (as far as I'm aware) tho I must admit I would reserve, even a skein, for a highlight on a scarf etc rather than a bottle cosy but that's entirely your choice of course :-) You would need to felt it as per usual felting techniques as you need hot water and agitation to felt.
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Old 06-04-2007, 01:37 AM   #3
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You're right, I should really reserve the alpaca, but I figured it'd be more absorbent than anything else I have. I forgot about the cotton/silk blend I have laying around. I know this makes it seem like all my stash yarn is expensive, but truly it isn't. It's just that because summer is coming, I really don't want something that's going to be hot and scratchy to the touch, since I'll be touching it often (I drink upwards of 1.5 gallons of water a DAY). It also needs to be absorbent, so that the sweat from the bottle stops getting all over everything.

So now the question is, should I continue with my ONLY skein of alpaca, knowing I can NEVER get more in this color/weight/dyelot, or should I go with the cotton, which is a luxury cotton to be sure, but one I loved knitting with?
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Old 06-04-2007, 02:00 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Susan P. View Post
You can only felt with 100% wool or alpaca etc (as far as I'm aware)
Patons SWS felts like crazy and it's 70% wool, 30% soy.
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Old 06-04-2007, 08:00 AM   #5
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Alpaca felts, though less stiffly than wool. I imagine that cotton would stretch when it got wet all the time, ya think?

If you want an alpaca cozy, I say go for it. At least you'll get to feel it all the time. I made a hat out of alpaca for my grandson and it got softer and softer throughout the winter.
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Old 06-04-2007, 11:10 AM   #6
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what kind of pattern are you using for the bottle cozy? I'm an iced tea fanatic and it has to be COLD so the bottles (my refillable plastic ones) sweat like crazy and I hate it....
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Old 06-04-2007, 12:48 PM   #7
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i say use the alpaca! you get to knit with great, soft yarn, then use it everyday! to me, that is better than a hat you can only wear when its cold enough. you can keep using your bottle cosy even in the winter with hot beverages to keep from touching too hot cups
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Old 06-04-2007, 01:13 PM   #8
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yes alpaca felts nicely... its "woolier" than just your normal wool.

This is a booga bag I made with Noro and ultra alpaca.

I picked up around the booga and made an i-cord detail with the ultra alpaca... I love it.

The alpaca felted much tighter than the noro so keep an eye on it when you felt it.
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Old 06-04-2007, 05:08 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Ingrid View Post
Alpaca felts, though less stiffly than wool. I imagine that cotton would stretch when it got wet all the time, ya think?

If you want an alpaca cozy, I say go for it. At least you'll get to feel it all the time. I made a hat out of alpaca for my grandson and it got softer and softer throughout the winter.
Thanks Ingrid. What happened to the sheep? I missed you. For the record, I'm not planning on felting it really tightly, more like a loose felt just to close up any holes and make it fit the bottle better.

Originally Posted by marykz View Post
what kind of pattern are you using for the bottle cozy? I'm an iced tea fanatic and it has to be COLD so the bottles (my refillable plastic ones) sweat like crazy and I hate it....
I have an oddly shaped bottle, it's really more of a pitcher. I got it at the grocery store, and it's a rubbermaid:

My cap is white, though (I like the red one better). Anyways, since it has a mostly rectangular base, I was figuring I'd do a more booga-bag type thing. I'm using 10 US needles and as I said, the yarn is bulky (Cascade Baby Alpaca Chunky, gotten on Clearance at WEBS for some ridiculously low price) and I only have 108 yards of it. I'm getting about 3st to the inch. Since I'm going to felt it, I'm doing a garter stitch base of 15st x however many rows, and then I'll pick up stitches around the rectangle and knit in the round. I don't have enough for a swatch so I'm going to knit and felt and hope it works.

Thanks everyone for your input! If anyone has any other suggestions let me know!
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Finished: Warm Up America Square, Basketweave Baby Blanket (now to ship it), Massachusetts Dishcloth for the Yarn Harlot, Homeless Hat
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Old 06-04-2007, 05:55 PM   #10
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a booga for your bottle! How cute is that! I say go for it.
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