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How to Choose the Right Yarn to Knit & Crochet With This Spring & Summer

May 11th, 2012

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Guide to choosing the right yarns for spring and summerKnitting and crochet aren’t just crafts for the fall and winter; when you choose the right yarns and projects, you can keep right on crafting in the hotter months of the year! With these 5 tips on choosing the perfect yarn for your spring and summer projects, you’ll be comfortable making and wearing your crafts throughout the warmer seasons.

Think animal fibers for winter, plant fibers for summer.

Animal fiber yarns like thick wools, fluffy angoras and snuggly alpacas keep us warm when it’s chilly, and when it comes to staying cool, plant fibers can help. Yarns and blends with cotton or bamboo are best for projects that will be comfortable to work on and you’ll be able to wear or use right away. Many of the yarns we love for the cooler months feel heavy or sticky in the heat, so choose something with a cool hand like Cotton-Ease for crafting in the summer.

Pick a color you love… or dye it till you do!

The first thing we tend to see when we look at a new yarn is the color, so choose colors that inspire you! If you choose to dye your own, opt for store-bought and natural dyes that react well with plant fiber yarns. 100% cotton yarns like Lion Cotton, Recycled Cotton and Nature’s Choice Organic® Cotton all respond to dyes designed for cotton. You can dye neutral-colored yarn, or add dye to a colorful skein (just keep in mind you’ll be adding color to the existing color, so your result will be an entirely new shade). For our guide to choosing the right dye for your yarn, click here.

A fiber you love to touch is often a yarn you’ll love to work with and wear.

When it’s hot out we tend to wear fewer layers, so shawls and cover-ups will probably touch your skin. Many crafters hold a skein of yarn to their cheek or throat to see if it will feel comfortable. Some yarns grow softer when washed, so swatching and washing will tell you how more about how the finished project will feel. Smooth yarns like Cotton-Ease and LB Collection Cotton Bamboo are very popular for spring projects because they feel light and soft to the touch.

Pick a project you’ll enjoy making as much as using.

Making a project is half the fun, so think about how, when and where you’ll be crafting. If you’ll only have a little time and could use more dishcloths or spa sets, try downloading several patterns from Ravelry or LionBrand.com and keeping a few shades of Kitchen Cotton by your side. By trying new shades or stitch patterns, you’ll keep your WIPs interesting while making lots of these handy projects.

Love a pattern, but want to use a more heat-wave-friendly yarn? Make a substitution!

Just because a pattern is designed in a wintery yarn doesn’t mean you can’t make a summery version. LB Collection® Cotton Bamboo, for example, can be used in most patterns made with DK or Category 3 yarns. Click here for our guide to yarn substitutions and all the things you’ll want to know about making a switch.

 

How do you choose yarn for your projects? Do you have any tips on crafting in the summer? Leave a comment to share!

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