When knitting mittens, you want the highest quality yarn to keep your fingers warm and something affordable and durable that won’t break the bank or wear after a couple of wears.
So what is the best yarn for knitting mittens? Wool is the best yarn for knitting mittens. Natural sheep wool breathes very well, wicks away moisture from your skin and provides a soft layer of insulation that makes it the ideal material to keep your hands nice and warm. Plus, it is very affordable.
Cotton, cashmere, angora, and mohair yarns are also great choices, depending on the style you wish to create, and the amount of money you want to spend. Wool and cotton are affordable, durable and great looking.
Angora, mohair, and cashmere are more expensive, yet just as durable and warm. These materials are usually blended with less expensive materials to make them more affordable.
Blended materials also offer a variety of other benefits, such as more or less elasticity – some fibers are too elastic and some are not elastic enough.
Shopping for the Best Yarn
Standing in the store with a sea of colored yarn stretched out before you makes choosing the right one a tad bit difficult. How do you decide which ball of yarn will make the best mittens?
What is yarn?
Staring at all those neatly rolled balls of fluffy material can make you wonder what exactly are you looking for?
Yarn is a type of textile that can be natural or man-made – or a combination of both. It is commonly made of animal fiber, such as sheep’s wool, angora or mohair; plant-based fibers, like cotton, silk or hemp; or synthetic (man-made) fibers like polyester, rayon or nylon.
Knitting with polyester, rayon or nylon is a different story. These materials are great in a variety of projects, however, winter mittens are really not one of them.
But, if you want a classy pair of spring or fall mitts, one of these yarns could be just what you need – remember the old classy lace gloves?
The fibers are interlocked into plies and then spun together to make thicker strands. The number of plies affects the drape, definition of the stitch and the overall feel.
The ply count is categorized by weight:
- Category 0 – Lace: Lace is about 1 ply. It is the lightest yarn, generally used to make doilies and other fine lace creations like elegant evening gloves. It should be handled with care because it can tangle and break easily. But, if that is what you desire, you will learn to master the fine fibers.
- Categories 1, 2 and 3: This type is approximately 2 to 5 plies and comes in super fine, fine and light. It is great for baby clothes, socks or other small items. Fine yarn is also known as “sport weight” because it so light.
- Category 4: This medium weight is approximately 8 to 10 plies. It is also called “worsted” yarn. It is a popular choice for beginners and experienced knitters. Worsted yarn is a great choice for mittens, scarves, hats and sweaters because of the distinct stitch definition.
- Categories 5 and 6: Bulky and super bulky with about 12 to 14 plies. Yarn this heavy is perfect for quick, bulky projects made with large needles. It’s great for blankets, throws and chunky scarves. Beginners like this weight because projects can be completed quickly. Beginners like to see results fast! Advanced knitters like to use this category of yarn for unique creations.
The Best Yarns for Knitting Mittens
Below are the 5 best yarn for knitting mittens. These yarns will have your fingers feeling cozy in no time.
|1.||Knit Picks Wool of The Andes Worsted Weight Yarn||Wool|
|2.||Bernat Handicrafter Cotton Yarn||Cotton|
|3.||Varxlex Soft Cashmere Yarn for Knitting||Cashmere|
|4.||Hilitand Faux Angora Yarn (Wool and Mohair)||Faux angora (wool and mohair)|
|5.||Red Heart Italian Story Luce Mohair Blend Yarn||Mohair|
1. Knit Picks Wool of The Andes Worsted Weight Yarn
Spun from natural sheep’s wool, this strong fiber is well balanced with plenty of drape, loft and structure, making it a good choice for a variety of uses.
It is warm and snugly for chilly weather, yet sturdy and quite durable.
This all-purpose yarn boasts of excellent stitch definition, which is ideal for textured sweaters, cabled stitch afghans, and a variety of accessories to compliment any outfit.
US 6 (4 mm) to US 9 (5.5 mm) size knitting needles. US I (5.5 mm) to US K (6.5 mm) hooks are recommended for best results.
Carefully hand wash in warm water to keep your stitches crisp and to extend the life of your sweaters. Unfortunately, wool is prone to pilling over time.
2. Bernat Handicrafter Cotton Yarn
Cotton is an inexpensive, popular type of yarn, widely used by knitters all over the world.
From beginners to experts, cotton is right up there with wool when it comes to the yarn to use.
It is made of natural plant fibers and is very easy to dye any color imaginable. Because of its smoothness, cotton is ideal for showing off intricate and complicated stitching.
It has excellent drape, but unfortunately, it is not very elastic, which makes it split easily, right in the middle of your project.
US 7 (4.5 mm) is the suggested knitting needle size or a size H/8 (5mm) crochet hook.
Hand washing is recommended. You can tumble dry, but do not bleach or iron or dry clean.
3. Varxlex Soft Cashmere Yarn for Knitting
The superb quality of this yarn makes it truly luxurious in every way. There is no denying that cashmere is one of the finest materials available.
Unlike most fabrics, the softness actually improves as time goes on.
Because of its superior insulating properties, it is a great choice for winter cardigans, mittens, and scarves.
Cashmere is quite expensive. To make it more affordable, the yarn is typically blended with less expensive fibers, but that doesn’t take away any of its beauty or luxurious feel.
This type of yarn doesn’t breathe as well as other natural fibers, however, you can overcome this problem with loose stitching. Also, it is known to pile easily.
US 5 to 6 (3.75 to 4.0 mm) is the recommended knitting needle size.
Hand wash and lay flat to dry.
4. Hilitand Faux Angora Yarn (Wool and Mohair)
Knitters call angora yarn “halo” because of its super fluffiness, ultra-softness, and thin fibers.
It is also famous for a super silky texture.
The hollow core of the natural fiber makes it much warmer and lighter than any other material, including wool. This is also what gives it that floating feel.
Pure angora yarn is made from the fur of the angora rabbit, however this is a blend of wool and mohair. This blend makes it incredibly warm and soft, making a great choice for mittens and winter wear.
Like mohair, pure angora is difficult to knit with because it’s so slippery. With this blend of wool, you won’t have such a hard time knitting with it.
Compatible with 2-7 mm knitting needles.
Hand wash in cold water and dry flat.
5. Red Heart Italian Story Luce Mohair Blend Yarn
Fluffy, elegant and luxurious, this fiber is known for being super soft with remarkable sheen and lightness. This yarn creates the toastiest mittens and sweaters around.
Mohair is very elastic. It stretches and springs right back into shape, making your creations wrinkle and sag resistant.
Because it is so fluffy, knitting can be tricky, especially if you like well-defined stitches.
This yarn is often blended with wool or silk for extra weight. Although this yarn has a low-allergenic risk, it has been known to irritate sensitive skin.
US 9 (5.5mm) to US 10 (6 mm) size knitting needles are recommended.
Hand wash in cold water and lay flat to dry.
What it all comes down to is choose the yarn that best suits your needs. All of these yarns are great for mittens and other sweaters and accessories you want to make to keep you warm and toasty on the coldest days.
When you use a pattern, the instructions often give you tips and suggestions on the weight of the yarn and what knitting needle size you should use. Remember, these are just suggestions. It never hurts to get a little creative.
Patterns and suggestions are great for beginners. In fact, when you are first learning how to knit, you will depend on these instructions like a life-line.
But, once you get the hang of knitting, you will want to branch out and do your own thing. A size 7 knitting needle might be ideal, but with a different size, you can create something totally different and unique.
When choosing your yarn, don’t forget about the practical aspects of your project, either. Does your knitted sweater need to be machine washable? How important is it for the fabric to be breathable? Does your chosen yarn come in the color you want?
Yarn is dyed, so there is a very good chance you will find the color of your choice.
A durable wool yarn will make a very, warm, well-made pair of mittens, but for a loopy rosette scarf, sumptuously soft and elegant is best made with a luxurious material like angora or mohair. The choice is yours!
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