28 March 2011

A Take of Two Yarns* (2KCBWDAY1)

This post is part of Knitting and Crochet Blog Week 2011.

Have you ever knit with linen yarn? The first time I tried knitting up some Louet Linen I broke a favorite needle. Granted, it was a plastic Bryspun, not a metal needle, but still, it was a disheartening experience. On top of that, as a fairly new knitter, it was difficult to handle this yarn, so wiry, so rough, nothing like the soft merinos I had grown fond of with their bounce and sheen. I put the three skeins in the back of my stash and did my best to forget about them.

However, a few years later, continuing to hear about what a great yarn this Louet Linen is, I tried again. This time I was more prepared for the hand, and I grabbed a Hiya Hiya metal needle - no chance of breakage there, unless I ran the needle over with a tractor. I re-swatched, and the knitting wasn't terrible. I think my additional experience as a knitter helped. Then I washed the swatch, as Louet recommends, in the washing machine and threw it in the dryer. Holy smokes! It went from crispy and rough to soft and drapey. Now I understood what everyone had been talking about. From the swatch I worked up a pattern (coming soon) and knit up a sweater that I wore all last summer. It only gets better with washing! I have some more, and I'm debating whether to wash the skeins before working with them. It's still a tough, strong yarn, and I kind of enjoyed the magic of putting the finished item through the washing machine. We'll see.

Just goes to show that sometimes you should give yarn a second chance.

*I guess this ended up being a tale of the same yarn at two different times.


  1. I have been tempted to buy linen for a towel or two. After hearing your tale I just might. The soft and drapey sound lovely. Also I love the idea of just throwing something in the washer and dryer.

  2. it's nice to hear about your experience. i have a cone of white linen yarn in my closet and i've been reluctant to give it a go. swatching and washing sounds like the way to start. looking forward to seeing your new pattern.


what do you think?