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Old 04-03-2008, 09:37 AM   #1
mwhite
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Tell me about Mercerized Cotton, please!
Does it come in DK weight or is it all lace/fingering?

What about its knittability, is it smooth, what's the texture, is it polished?

Is it easy care, can I use it for garments or is it best suited for other things (ie: tablecloths, pillows, etc...)?

Can you give me some feedback on particular brands?

Why do they call it mercerized and what benefit does this process serve?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:03 AM   #2
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Don't know much about it Mary but I saw this:
Mercerized cotton has a higher luster, greater strength, holds more dye, and does not shrink as much when washed as unmercerized cotton.
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Old 04-03-2008, 10:21 AM   #3
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Mercerizing is a process where the raw cotton is put through a sodium hydroxide bath and then an acid bath. It slightly changes the structure of the cotton fiber, making it stronger and more lustrous. It also somewhat pre-shrinks the fiber so the yarn doesn't shrink as much during laundering as regular cotton.

Mercerized cotton yarn is smoother and shinier than unmercerized cotton making it more suitable for garments and fancier items. It also has less tendency to pill or create lint.

It reduces the absorbency of the fiber, so unmercerized cotton is preferred for things like hand towels and diaper soakers.

You should be able to find mercerized cotton in all yarn weights, just like any other yarn fiber.

Hope this helps!
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:11 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by mwhite View Post

Why do they call it mercerized
The technique was created by a guy named John Mercer. Gotta love Google.

http://search.yarn.com/search?p=Q&lb...=and&view=list
http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/search?...cerized+cotton
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:25 AM   #5
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and you can find mercerized cotton in all weights.. but it is especially common in lighter wieghts (i rarely see chunky mercerize cotton, worsted weight is pretty common, DK more readily available, sports and fingering very common, and almost all super fine (from lace to sewing threads--and everything inbetween almost always mercerized!--its pretty hard to find fine unmercerized cotton (sometime called candle wick (even when its not braided as for candle wick) which is used in making embroidered 'chenille' (like a chenille bedspread)
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Old 04-03-2008, 11:34 AM   #6
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Thanks! Okay, I found this: http://yarn.com/webs/0/0/0/0-1001-1008-1326/0/0/1372/

So tell me what the 3/2, 5/2 and 10/2 means and how can I tell what weight this is?
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:08 PM   #7
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This is one way that Ravelry is handy.. It's a fingering weight cotton. Webs says it's a weaving yarn...are you weaving something?
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:15 PM   #8
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Yep, it's for weaving, Darn it! LOL! Course, that's enough yardage to make Omar a really big tent! I'm not weaving, but want enough to do a nice doily tablecloth for my daughter's big, oval, 72" diningroom table. Then again, I could use #00 size needles, huh? NOT!!! I really want some that's dk weight and all I'm finding is 135-150 yard skeins. The search continues... found some on ebay but not enough yardage in one lot.
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Old 04-03-2008, 12:21 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Silver View Post

Mercerized cotton yarn is smoother and shinier than unmercerized cotton making it more suitable for garments and fancier items. It also has less tendency to pill or create lint.
I really love this part! Have been using TLC Cotton Plus for most of my projects that require cotton, just for the care factors. The acrylic gets fuzzy when knitting, so I know it'll pill when washed.
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Old 04-03-2008, 06:29 PM   #10
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I would LOVE to find some chunky mercerized cotton!
Anyone know of any leads?


I'd be eternally grateful!
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