Learn to Care for Your Mohair

Feb 27, 2014

Buttercream Shawl by Annette Petavy Lantana Scarf by Theresa Schabes

With two beautiful projects in our Spring 2014 issue using mohair yarns, I thought it only appropriate that we discuss some of the inner workings of this fiber. Mohair is a luxurious and beautiful yarn choice and one of my favorite fabric types. The feeling of wearing a lovely mohair piece always makes me feel glamorous and ready to conquer the world. In addition to looking lovely, mohair is a strong fiber and both lightweight yet still warm.

Mohair works nicely when run along with another yarns but I personally like to use the mohair by itself to fully embrace the fluff and fabulousness! For me, a blend that is mostly mohair (say 70 or 80%) mixed with a bit of silk is just a dream. The silk adds a lustrous and shiny look while the mohair keeps the garment soft and cozy. 

Alright so there are some down sides to working with mohair. For example, it can be extremely difficult to rip back a project when you need to fix a mistake. Those little mohair pieces love to stick to each other, making the task a difficult feat of strength. Here is a helpful tip featured in the Lantana Scarf pattern "If you need to rip out stitches, first put the scarf in your freezer for 10 minutes. The cold will calm the sticky mohair and make it easier to undo." It really does help, give it a try next time!

Another challenge can be caused by the fuzzy and soft stitches... it does require a bit more concentration to see what you are doing with a mohair yarn. Make sure to swatch and get the hang of working with your yarn before starting the project. 

Mohair becomes weaker when wet so I tend to avoid a heavy blocking. You can simply pin into place, then spray with water and let dry. Another option, if available to you, is to pin into place, then steam block. The fluffy halo will come back again!

Do you like working with mohair or stay far away from it? Let us know!

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Vintagevesta wrote
on Feb 28, 2014 4:12 AM

I like mohair but don't like how it leaves fluff on your clothing so I avoid using it.

Sveika wrote
on Mar 24, 2014 12:58 PM

A larger hook makes an airier stitch pattern, but the large point can also distort and pull. -- Deep in my tool stash I had an old (1920s or 1930s) bone crochet hook from my grandmother-by-marriage. This has a smooth but acute point, and the shaft widens away from the hook. The small point gets into the hole of my airy stitches, without messing up the fluff. True, I have to push the shaft down to get the widened stitch, but the time I lose in this one extra (but smooth) motion I save in not having to deal with misshapen stitches or snagged yarn. It is also easier to undo stitches, when necessary. -- I've just finished spectacular mitts, scarf, and a Moebius cap, mixing hdc, marguerites, and various tunisian-in-the-round. -- I bought more vintage bone crochet hooks via eBay. The ones without a colored ice-cream-cone top are more likely to be bone instead of plastic. The more the shaft widens, the more versatile the hook: like having D, E, and F shafts on a C point. User's choice for different stitches in the same fabric, all with one hook.

on Mar 24, 2014 1:36 PM

Vintagevesta: oooh I do hate that! I've noticed that some of mohair yarns are worse than others when it comes to leaving that fluff behind.

Sveika: that is such a helpful tip, I hadn't even thought of those old bone crochet hooks but they would be perfect! Thank you!