HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR HANDCRAFTED PIECES

skeino care for your handicraft pieces

We often receive emails from SKEINO customers who are unsure about how to care for their knitted or crocheted pieces. Oh, it seems so complicated! All these different fibers need their special care! But have no fear, help is near. In this post we’ll give you an overview that should help making you feel more comfortable about caring for your finished projects.

So It’s very important to know, how to care for knitted, crochet or handwoven pieces. You’ve spent your money to buy the yarn and you’ve spent many hours using your talent to create these wonderful pieces. If you take good care of them you’ll have enjoyment for years to come.

 Here at SKEINO we do not like pressing, except for Lace Pieces – We like all pieces to be fluffy and cuddle soft.

It’s not very difficult to do so, no matter which fiber you used.

In general to hand wash your piece is never wrong. Use the detergent of your choice but don’t be too harsh. You can high spin (!) all your pieces, because the drum will run in one direction, this means NO felting. Here at SKEINO we do not like pressing, except for Lace Pieces – We like all pieces to be fluffy and cuddle soft.

Now let’s get a little more specific and jump into the different kinds of fibers.

Pieces made from PLANT FIBER (cotton, linen, rayon, bamboo, etc.):

  • Hand wash or gentle machine wash; rinse and high spin; dryer medium to medium high – damp dry; drying your final piece flat on a towel outside is the best, shape your piece perfectly
SKEINO tencel sock in la boheme colorway

These socks are made using our Tencel Sock yarn which is based on plant fibers

Pieces made from SILK:

  • Hand wash; high spin; dryer medium to medium high – damp dry, no more than 3 min by themselves; drying your final piece flat on a towel outside is the best, shape your piece perfectly
Our Scarf-In-A-Scarf Knitting Kit comes with a silk scarf

Our Scarf-In-A-Scarf Knitting Kit comes with a silk scarf

Pieces made from ANIMAL FIBER – not superwash treated (merino, alpaca, mohair, lama, all other sheep wools, etc.):

  • Hand wash in warm water with a mild detergent or use your own shampoo (all animal fibers and human hair are made from protein); let your piece soak and just squeeze it; rinse well with less movements; high spin; dry with low heat and no more than 2 minutes in your dryer, it will fluff up your piece with NO felting; drying your final piece flat on a towel outside is the best, shape your piece perfectly
SKEINO ALPACA SHAWL

The Alpaca Shawl uses Alpaca and Merino yarn

Pieces made from ANIMAL FIBER –superwash treated (mainly merino and other sheep wools, etc.):

  • Machine wash in warm water with a mild detergent or use your own shampoo (all animal fibers and human hair are made from protein); let your piece soak and use the gentle cycle; do NOT use the rinse cycle, instead fill the machine with cold water and move the pieces by hand, then high spin, maybe repeat the rinse process a second time; dry with low heat and no more than 3 minutes in your dryer, it will fluff up your piece with NO felting; dry final (outside is the best) flat on a towel, shape your piece perfectly; NOTE: if you don’t have a top loader, you’ll need to consider to hand wash your piece
  • REMEMBER: Superwash yarns do NOT provide a complete “NO FELTING” tag. To be careful is always the best way to go. It is your piece and you’ve put your talent and money into it.
SKEINO Arabella Shawl

Our bestseller Arabella Shawl is made using 100% Extra Fine Merino Superwash yarn

Want to know more about fiber types? Read a related blog post: SKEINO EXPLAINS: HANDPAINTED PROTEIN FIBERS VS. PLANT FIBERS

So that wasn’t too hard after all, right? Feel free to re-browse this blogpost anytime you are unsure about how to care for your handcrafted pieces. Make sure to spread the word in your family & friends if they are unsure. As always please feel free to ask us anything or share your thoughts in the comment section.

HOW IT WORKS: HAND PAINTED YARNS AND THEIR COLOR REPEAT

Today we will talk about the very core of what we do at SKEINO: Hand paint yarns. We will explain the process as well as some special techniques that we created in order to make the color repeat even better.

SKEINO yarn in natural colorways

SKEINO yarn in natural colorways

Hand dyers are usually using yarn in a natural color for their work. The yarn is wound up into a skein (hank). The yarn is open and can absorb the dye liquid with its pigments. After that the skeins are being dipped into a dye bath or portions of the skein are being colored. In any case, the circle of a skein creates one color repeat per circumference.

A color repeat of a skein when it's hand painted

A color repeat of a skein when it’s hand painted

If you wind the skein above into a ball and you are knitting the yarn up you will have this color repeat:

*red – blue – green – yellow – brown – yellow – green – blue – red*

This sequence will create its unique color repeat and will “design” something on its own. The color design that develops will depend on the number of stitches that you have on your needle.

These terms are being known for those color designs: Pooling, Zigzag and Blotches or all together.

In the past you may have seen or knitted a sweater with a big blotch at the front, zigzags at the sleeves and pooling on the back. Designers have created different techniques to prevent those unwanted color creations, like knitting with two balls. You will not have any of these repeats if you knit a piece with short rows or if you knit a piece on the bias. The colors of the yarn will not stagger at the same place.

At SKEINO we created a new hand painting technique which completely prevents yarn from pooling, zigzagging or blotching, no matter how many stitches you have on your needles. Using this technique, all skeins are randomly colored. Your sweater parts will look all the same.

Here are some samples:

Traditionally dyed but the pattern for the piece “FAN SHAWL” is using short rows for its design:

SKEINO Fan Shawl

SKEINO Fan Shawl

If you want to try this pattern you can find it here: http://www.skeino.com/knitting-kits/fan-shawl-knitting-kit.html (on sale for $39)

Randomly dyed: MONICA YARN:

http://www.skeino.com/yarns/monica-yarn-7-oz-skeins-extra-fine-merino-superwash.html

SKEINO Monica Yarn (Bulky, colorway Rain Forest)

SKEINO Monica Yarn (Bulky, colorway Rain Forest

Knitted in a Feather & Fan Pattern:

SKEINO Monica Yarn knitting sample

SKEINO Monica Yarn in our Feather & Fan Pattern

SKEINO’S new technique randomly dyed: 3 skeins worsted weight Extra Fine Merino “FRANCESCA”:

http://www.skeino.com/yarns/francesca-yarn-4-oz-skeins-extra-fine-merino-superwash.html

SKEINO Francesca Yarn

SKEINO Francesca Yarn

We hope you enjoyed our short walkthrough. Hand painting yarn is our passion and we love to give you some insight to this beautiful craft. As always please feel free to write your questions or recommendations down in the comments section.

SKEINO EXPLAINS: KNITTING WITH 2 YARNS AND AN ODD REPEAT

This is the series where we explain tips & tricks that will make your knitting more fun and your pieces even more pleasing to the eye. Sometimes easy knitting comes with an unexpected pattern effect, if you do it right. Knitting with 2 yarns and an odd repeat is a technique that creates just that effect.

Closeup Yarn Repeat SKEINO Operetta Shawl

This closeup shows the 2 different yarns used in the project

As an example we’ll use our “OPERETTA SHAWL” which is created using two very different yarns and a three row repeat in just Garter Stitch.

Operetta Shawl in Don Giovanni Pastel

Operetta Shawl in Don Giovanni Pastel

Yarn One: worsted weight Silk/Merino blend 50/50, single spun

Yarn Two: lace weight Kid Mohair/Silk blend 70/30, brushed

The three row Yarn Repeat is: one row Silk/Merino and two rows Kid/Mohair worked in Garter Stitch.

How can this be done without breaking the yarn all the time, because the yarn you need next is on the wrong side of the work?

Easy fix: use a circular needle and slide the needle to the end where the yarn is and start knitting the next row. In other words, knit the front with the other yarn a second time or knit the back with the other yarn a second time. You can carry the yarn on the side because it will be carried only for one or two rows.

The Garter Stich creates with the one row Silk/Merino a wonderful meander. The Kid Mohair connects the meander rows very lacy but strong using the same size needle.

Do try this at home! If you like this technique and would like to try it on your next project here is the link to our Online Store “Operetta Shawl”. As a special goodie we created a discount coupon for you.

Use the coupon OPERETTA upon checkout and receive a 20% discount until the end of June.

24 different colors waiting for you. Happy Knitting!

SKEINO Operetta Shawl in Norma

SKEINO Operetta Shawl in Norma

If you have any questions or remarks, as always, we would love to hear from you in the comment section. 🙂