Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Oh no my darling, not with that clown

This is an UPDATE of the old post
Last updated 13 Nov 09

This is a list of the yarns that I have successfully felted.

I certainly can't make any promises. Felting can be a fickle thing. To avoid disappointment and frustration you should make a swatch in the colour(s) you plan to use, or at least test the yarn, especially for a big project or irreplaceable yarn.

For a fully felted, smooth fabric, choose a 100% wool that is not machine-washable. Yarns with partial wool content may still felt, especially if knitted together with a strand of 100% wool, but there will probably be bubbles or other effects caused by the non-feltable content. You can get some interesting and fun effects this way. Similarly, carrying a strand of eyelash or other fuzzy, totally non-wool yarn with a 100% wool can be interesting.

With thick-and-thin yarns (TT) it can be hard to get an evenly felted fabric without any holes - spots where stitches with a thin part sit on top of thin stitches from the previous row. Normally larger than the recommended needle size is suggested for felting, but I find smaller needles better with thick-and-thin yarns, or holding it together with a strand of regular wool to even things out.

Here's the list so far:

Nature Wool (100% wool)

Burra Wool
8 ply

Merino spun (80% wool 20% acrylic)
Nurture (100% wool)
Vintage hues (100% wool)
Vintage twist (100% wool)
12 ply natural (100% wool, appears to have been discontinued, I have two older lots from an op shop)

8 ply 100% wool

Homemaker (Kmart)
Venice (100% wool)

Cosy Wool (100% wool)
Prism (70% wool, 30% soybean)
Big Wool - the old version which was 100% wool

Moda Vera
Mousse (70% wool 30% soybean)

Aspire (70% wool,30% alpaca)

Silk Garden (45% silk, 45% kid mohair, 10% lamb's wool) - did not felt fully - lots of stitch definition left. Best combined with something else.
and, I think, Kureyon (no label) - felted well.

Woolbale (100% wool)
Carnival pure wool 8 ply (NB they also make an acrylic called Carnival - don't bother trying to felt this)

Jet (70% wool 30% alpaca)

Sean Sheep (Big W)
Armytage (100% wool)
Rockbank (70% wool, 30% soybean)
Spirit prints (100% wool)
Spirit plain (100% wool)
Stonehaven (TT) (100% wool)
Wollert (100% wool)

Spotlight Basics
Empire (90% wool, 10% acrylic)
Meadow Pure Wool

Twilleys of Stamford
Freedom spirit 100% wool

I still haven't tried these yet but I am pretty sure they are good felters:
Bendigo Woollen Mills
Rustic (100% wool)
Colonial (100% wool) - I have email advice from Bendigo that both of these should felt.

**Note on Lincraft Cosy Wool**

Cosy Wool went 'wrong' for a year or two (a couple of season ago now) and was not feltable. This seemed to coincide with the move to 100g balls. The ones to avoid are tightly packed, don't look much bigger than the old 50g balls, and have the same black label. Cosy Wool in the older 50g balls should be feltable.


Jejune said...

A great collection of information - thanks!

My somewhat wonky French Market Bag was made with Twilley's Freedom yarn - it certainly felts well, but shrinks more vertically than horizontally. I didn't test felt it, as I clearly should have!

Rose Red said...

Oh thanks for this - I'm glad Vintage Hues is on the list, as I bought some with the intention of felting it.

Olivia said...

I've found that stocking stitch always tends to shrink more vertically than horizontally. I need to experiment more but I think garter stitch shrinks more evenly - because it has more vertical 'give' to begin with.

Georgie said...

Great info, thanks! I'm itching to get started on some felting projects, you've really inspired me.

Taphophile said...

Excellent info! My mind still shies away from deliberately shrinking my knitting, but I'm working on it.

Bells said...

that title was bugging me. I knew I knew it. Mr Costello. :-)

Thank you Google.

You know your stuff Olivia. One day, when I felt, you will be my guru.

Olivia said...

Bells I'm just feeling my way around, honestly. And trying to keep notes!

catsmum said...

I can vouch for the BWM Rustic and Colonial [ proof in a post earlier this week if you care to check ] and also Panda Woolbale. [ same project ]
and thanks to Bells for sending me over here

twitchy fingers said...

I can attest to the Twilley's freedom too - worked really well!

Kate said...

I've been tempted to try felting before, a pair of mittens or a small bag, but I just never tried it! I want to master knitting a bit more before I start doing things that I've been told for years now not to do to my wool.
Thank you for the kind thoughts-- I've actually passed on the shawl for now in favor of something easier. I'll post about the new project later this week. It's colorful!