Are you looking for a natural fiber yarn that makes an excellent alternative to cotton? Something absorbent, lightweight, airy and strong?
Linen will most likely pop up first if you asked. It is all that and more – cooling, eco-friendly, easy to dye, has a nice sheen, is antibacterial, among other qualities. This perhaps explains why it has been a centuries-old favorite fiber that is used for weaving, knitting, crocheting, knotting, macrame, and other uses.
What is linen yarn made of? Linen yarn is made out of the cellulose fibers of the flax plant. It is sometimes referred to as flax yarn.
What is the best linen yarn? While the best linen yarn varies by use, a lighter weight is a safe and versatile choice. Be sure the ply, weight, and amount of yarn fit your project. Because linen does not stretch and is often used for lace and finer projects, lace or similar weight is a good choice.
If you are getting the linen vibes but are unsure of where to begin your search for the best linen yarns, this post is for you. We help you decode the how, where, and which of shopping for the best linen yarn.
Linen Yarn: What to Look For
100% linen yarn is fairly costly compared to cotton and synthetic yarn like polyester and acrylic. This is partly due to its being a luxurious fiber, and the laborious harvesting and processing involved.
You, therefore, don’t want to throw the dice on your yarn. Here are a couple of things to consider when choosing linen yarn:
1. Ply: There is single-ply and multi-ply linen yarn. The single-ply is made from long fibers that yield a much smoother strand than the multi-ply linen yarn. The latter utilizes shorter fibers hence several joinings that give the yarn a little rugged texture.
2. Color: Linen yarn, like cotton, could be bleached and dyed. But if you are a naturalista looking for unbleached, undyed linen yarn, there are organic options too. After all, you have the freedom to dye it once you are done knitting or crocheting your garment using a natural dye of your choice.
3. Weight: You’ll encounter a range of weights from lace to fingering weight, DK to sport weight, and even bulky linen yarn.
If you aren’t matching your yarn to a specific pattern or purpose, weights like DK (lighter side of medium) or worsted (medium), are normally a versatile and safe option, but for linen, you may want to stick to slightly finer yarns.
4. Length: Check the yardage per skein of linen and be sure it is enough for your project. Patterns indicate how much yarn you should expect to use. If you’re not using a pattern, you can research to find averages by type of project and yarn; just add a little extra to your total yardage needed to be safe.
Remember, linen yarn has no give. Therefore, the finished product won’t stretch. Check that you’ve got enough yarn for the intended fit.
5. Pattern/Project: Our recommendations are based on the average user who may not be experienced enough to know what to choose. Still, if you are working on a particular pattern or a specific type of project, you may need something completely different.
If you’re working with a lace design, for example, you likely won’t want a medium weight yarn, but a light one – maybe even a true lace weight – or even a bulky one for that chunky lace look.
Bonus Tip: Linen yarn and metal hooks or needles don’t work well together. The yarn slides right off them. It works best with bamboo or other wooden alternatives, so you may want to get those too. You can also try plastic hooks or needles which will likely work better than metal but not as well as wood.
The 3 Best Linen Yarns
Pure linen is an exclusive high-end fiber, and the price per skein is normally up and above the standard synthetic knitting ball.
To avoid gambling with your hard-earned cash, you’ll appreciate some guidance to the best 100% linen yarns in the market. Here’s our round-up for that:
|1.||Lusie's Linen Yarn (Flax)||Super fine, 3,450yd cone|
|2.||Lotus Yarns Linen Yarn (Beige)||Lace weight, 317yd|
|3.||Fibra Natura Flax Yarn (Icy Dawn)||Worsted weight, 137yd|
We’ve got more about each yarn below, so be sure to check out our reviews for a fuller discussion on each of these luscious linens!
1. Lusie’s Linen Yarn (Flax Color)
Lusie’s 100% linen yarn comes in the fiber’s most natural color, beige, for that authentic look. It is sourced and spun from Europe’s highest quality flax and meets all the expectations of fine linen.
The lace weight yarn is ideal for all your crafting needs, from knitting to crocheting, warping looms, and embroidery works.
In every cone is a whopping 3,450 yards of 3 ply yarn. However, there are other options from 1 to 4 ply each with generous amounts of yarn too.
Don’t be fooled if this yarn appears unappealing at first. Linen/flax yarns become softer after being worked into a pattern and washed, and often soften a bit more with repeated use and washing.
Clearly, this is what we would call a real investment in linen yarn. You get both value and quality in one cone.
2. Lotus Yarns Linen Lace Weight Yarn (Beige)
Lotus yarns offer you everything you would want in 100% linen yarn.
The lace weight natural linen yarn is surprisingly easy to work with. Lotus even advertises it as a comfortable weight for beginners, despite its fine weight. So if you’ve been wanting to progress to your first lace project, this may be the perfect choice.
It drapes beautifully, is lightweight, airy, absorbent and strong -the perfect knitting or crochet partner for those handmade summer accessories.
As usual for linen yarn, the texture and stiff definition improve significantly with use and washing. Each skein weighs 1.76 oz, is 317 yards long and is dyed in one of the 23 beautiful color options.
3. Fibra Natura Flax (Icy Dawn)
Are you a lover of color? You’ll be elated at the 33 lovely color options you get to pick from with this linen yarn.
The palette is a combination of earth tones, bolds, nature greens, cool blues and more perfect for apparel and home decor.
A 4 medium weight worsted aran weight linen yarn, Fibra Natura Flax is a bliss to work with. So light and smooth yet sturdy.
And although your creations may seem a little rigid at first as expected of natural linen, the crunchiness softens tremendously with every spin in the washer.
Each skein purchased is a 50g/1.75 ounce bundle measuring 137 yards. Not so much there, but worth the yarn quality and color selection you get for the price. It’s a great choice for smaller, but finer, projects such as facecloths.
Up Next: The 7 Best Yarns For Face Cloths