Many of the crocheters I know have at least one skein of Lion Brand Homespun yarn in their stash. Are you one of them? Maybe it’s a remnant from when you first started crocheting and you didn’t know how difficult this yarn is to work with. It might have been a gift from a well-meaning friend. Or perhaps you, in all of your yarny wisdom, still walk down the yarn aisle at Walmart every once in a while and grab a skein because IT’S SO SOFT AND PRETTY! No judgment here, my friend.
Later, though, reality sets in. No one enjoys working with this yarn! It’s difficult, and it doesn’t frog well. Its texture muddles delicate pattern stitches. Who cares if it’s soft when you can’t make anything with it?! And what are we supposed to do with just one skein of it anyway?
Well, here’s an answer for you! The Sweater Weather Cowl is an easy piece that looks and feels amazing in Lion Brand Homespun, and I’ve written the pattern to make working with this yarn as un-frustrating as possible. The trick to working with Homespun is using a hook larger than called for on the label, especially for the foundation chain. The texture of the yarn keeps your work from looking “gappy”, and you’ll spend less time wanting to throw your project across the room when you can see the stitches better.
Another secret for making beautiful items with this yarn: keep it simple! The nubby hand and subtle striping pattern of Homespun speak for themselves. They don’t need to be dressed up in pretty stitch combinations or cables. The can stand alone in a simple, repetitive stitch, and your end product will still look beautiful and professional.
In looking through the pattern, you’ll notice that I worked the edging with a smaller hook and a smaller weight yarn. Why? Maybe this is just a personal issue, but I’ve found that when I work sc borders or edgings along the sides of rows, it’s very easy for that border to stretch and become wider than the item I’m edging. To avoid this issue, I typically use a smaller hook size. However, Lion Brand really has the propensity to stretch out when worked with such a large hook. To keep the cowl from stretching from usage, I’ve worked the edging in a more stable yarn with a smaller hook. If you don’t have this same problem, then work the border in whatever yarn you want! That’s the beauty of crochet: one pattern, still plenty of room for personal choice and creativity!
So what are you waiting for? Go grab that poor skein of Lion Brand Homespun in your stash that’s been too long overlooked. It’s his/her time to shine in the Sweater Weather Cowl!
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