Focus on Fiber: CottonBy Caissa "Cami" McClinton – 14 Comments
Cotton is a summer staple because of its breathability, absorbency, softness, and durability. A crochet powerhouse, cotton is used for everything from dishcloths to fine wearables. Threadies know the joys of crocheting in fine cotton thread with tiny hooks, but cotton comes in bulky weights as well.
Think of all of the cotton garments in your closet. Cotton fabric can range from the virtually indestructible denim of blue jeans to the delicate crepe of a summer blouse. Similarly, cotton yarn has many varieties – from the affordable workhorse dishcloth cotton to the finer (and pricier) Pima and Egyptian cottons. Mercerized cotton has undergone a chemical process to increase the yarn’s strength, durability, and luster. On the other hand, organic cotton is free of all chemical processes in growing the plant and processing the yarn.
Because cotton paradoxically might shrink in the wash but stretch when worn, it is best to choose a blend when crocheting fitted garments so the yarn will give you the look you desire. Generally, washing and reblocking the garment will restore shape to your cotton creations.
Cool cotton’s fiber structure pulls heat and absorbs moisture, making it a must in warmer climates. Vegans and animal activists might like cotton’s animal-free quality, as might those who have animal allergies.
What do you like to crochet with cotton? Please share your cotton adventures in the comments below!