In the Summer 2013 issue of Interweave Crochet, we review six silk-blend yarns. Here are seven more—because we just can't get enough of them! Love!
Silk, a delicious, crochet-friendly fiber, is well suited for year-round wear, absorbing moisture in warm weather and keeping warm air close in cold weather. Scrumptious against the skin, it is smooth and soft without being slippery. All-silk fibers require a bit of care. The fiber is inelastic, so when it's stretched, it's stretched forever. This makes all-silk fibers terrific for shawls, which are lovelier still with the lace opened up. For other garments, look for yarns that combine silk with other, more elastic fibers. In these blended yarns, silk's characteristics play out in increased drape, as well as a delicate sheen that amplifies the beauty of the other fibers. In hand-dyes, the silk takes the dye differently, adding a subtle depth of color that further enhances the fiber. Here is a gathering of various blends of silk to fold into your own wardrobe. For fun, we've paired each fiber with a Hollywood star who best exemplifies the yarn's characteristics.
The swatches are worked in the Starfish motif (page 90) in 150 Knit & Crochet Motifs by Heather Lodinsky (Interweave, 2011).
(dist by Skacel)
CONTENT: 55% cotton, 16% bamboo, 8% silk, 21%
elastic nylon PUT-UP: 220 yd, 201 m/1.76 oz, 50 g CONSTRUCTION: 3 plies
of 2-ply CARE: machine wash cold, dry flat COLOR: 008, natural olive
HOOK: F (3.75 mm)
Sally Field: Think Gidget on the beach for this
bouncy yarn. The bamboo lightens the cotton to create a very
lightweight fabric with a slight glow from the silk. The elastic nylon
gives the fabric a bit of stretch, perfect for garments worn with some
negative ease. The yarn has plenty of texture on its own, so take
advantage of a quick-working, simple solid stitch for maximum impact
with minimal labor.
PERFECT FOR A CLOSE-FITTING, FINE-STITCH SUMMER COVER-UP.
CONTENT: 100% silk PUT-UP: 127 yd, 117 m/1.75 oz, 50 g CONSTRUCTION: singles CARE: hand wash cold, dry flat COLOR: 173, sweet dreams HOOK: H/8 (5 mm)
Michelle Williams: It looks sweet and it's soft as a whisper, but this yarn is tough and ready to stand up to use in your favorite summer stole or even a tank. The color interlinks playfully up long stitches. The fabric has great shine and a smooth finish.
PERFECT FOR A SUMMER TANK OR LIGHT STOLE.
CONTENT: 38% silk, 25% cotton, 22% rayon, 15%
nylon PUT-UP: 125 yd, 115 m/1.75 oz, 50 g CONSTRUCTION: thread chained
around core CARE: machine wash cold in bag, dry flat COLOR: 9238,
stormcloud HOOK: G/6 (4.25
Sandra Bullock: This yarn acts
rugged, but is very sleek. It works up with excellent stitch definition
and has a smooth finish. It has movement, but not a lot of drape. With
the various fibers taking the dye differently, it is colorful without
being garish. Look out: here comes another Miss Congeniality.
PERFECT FOR A SUMMER CARDIGAN.
dist by Skacel
CONTENT: 54% merino new wool,
46% silk PUT-UP: 328 yd, 300 m/3.5 oz, 100 g CONSTRUCTION: 3-ply CARE:
handwash cool, dry flat COLOR: 4004, wild berries purple HOOK: G/6 (4.25
Susan Sarandon: There is a beautiful earthiness to this yarn
that will work into long-wearing garments you will reach for again and
again. Great stitch definition and a rustic silk combine in a yarn with
depth of hue. The resulting fabric has terrific drape and texture.
PERFECT FOR AN OPENWORK OR SOLID-STITCH SUMMER SHELL.
||Mango Moon Dharma
CONTENT: 100% silk PUT-UP: 150 yd, m / oz, g
CONSTRUCTION: singles CARE: handwash cool, dry flat COLOR: 9401, apricot
HOOK: H/8 (5 mm)
Gwyneth Paltrow: This eco-friendly, socially
aware yarn is handspun and hand-dyed from recycled saris and sarongs by
women in the Nepali Women's Empowerment Group. Sales help provide the
women and their families with shelter and education. Each skein of
slightly bristly thick-and-thin yarn is unique, with the colors showing
best on leggy stitches. The fabric is beautifully rustic.
PERFECT FOR ACCESSORIES, A COWL, OR A SCARF.
CONTENT: 40% cotton, 30% silk, 15% wool, 15% nylon
PUT-UP: 218 yd, 200 m/3.5 oz, 100 g CONSTRUCTION: singles CARE: handwash
cool, dry flat COLOR: 40, blue, white, purple, red HOOK: I/9 (5.5 mm)
Temple: This chubby cloud of a yarn can go up to a J or K hook to give
room for the cotton to bloom. You'll find yourself humming "On the Good
Ship Lollipop" as you watch the long repeats unfold—perfect for bloom
motif work, where each bloom would be a different color. This charming
yarn has wisps of raw silk and sparks of color.
PERFECT FOR A SUMMER MOTIF COVER-UP OR A SOFT BABY ACCESSORY.
||Rowan Summer Tweed
CONTENT: 70% silk, 30% cotton PUT-UP: 131
yd, 120 m/1.76 oz, 50 g CONSTRUCTION: 2-ply (slub) CARE: handwash cool,
dry flat COLOR: 542, mango HOOK: J/10 (6 mm)
Dame Maggie Smith:
This yarn has a rugged look, but works into a beautiful fabric. The
tweediness makes it a bit hard to read, much like Lady Violet Crawley
when she is getting her way with quiet firmness. The slubby silk makes
it sturdy with some movement; the drape is minimal, but the color
variation is delightful.
PERFECT FOR A SPRING PULLOVER.
Have you crocheted a project something with a silk-blend yarn? We'd love to see it! Please share in the reader's gallery.