The idea behind the Stitch Nation by Debbie Stoller line of yarns from Red Heart is a great one: producing lovely, colorful, natural fiber yarns that knitters and other yarn crafters want to use at a price they can afford.
Washable Ewe keeps the original promise of the line while adding the durability and washability that so many knitters need and want these days.
- Content: 100 percent superwash wool
- Yarn weight: medium
- Gauge: Ball band says 17 stitches and 22 rows per 4 inches on size 8 US (5 mm) knitting needles; I got 17.5 stitches and 24 rows per 4 inches on size 8 needles and 17 stitches and 24 rows per 4 inches on size 9 (5.5 mm) needles
- Yardage: 183 yards per 100 gram skein
- Color availability: 14 solids
- Color used in swatch: Lilac
- Care instructions: machine wash cold, gentle cycle; lay flat to dry
I started out knitting my Washable Ewe swatch with the size 8 US needles specified on the ball band but I wasn't happy with the results I was getting. The stitches felt too tight, the yarn too unyielding and stiff -- almost like working with an unpleasant acrylic rather than a soft wool.
Going up a needle size made only a tiny difference in my gauge -- just half a stitch over 4 inches -- but it made the knitting experience so much nicer for me. I liked the yarn a lot better; it flowed more nicely off my needles. The finished fabric also felt less stiff and like it had more drape than the original stitches.
This could jsut be my experince of the yarn, but if you find yourself swatching with this one and not enjoying it, try a bigger needle.
After getting over that hurdle, I found the yarn made for nice, easy knitting, with relatively even stitches and very little splitting of this 2-ply yarn.
The curl in Stockinette Stitch did not completely go away after washing.
Uses for Stitch Nation Washable Ewe
Washable Ewe is a great go-to all-purpose washable wool yarn for kid knitting projects and things for anyone else who needs their garments to be washable. The bright colors (heavy on blues, greens, purples and pinks) is perfect for kid clothes and, if you're a crocheter, would be darling in a Granny Square throw (or a patchwork-type knit blanket, I'm sure).
The colors all coordinate so colorwork is a snap with this line, and it'll be hard to decide what color you want to use for a project so that's a good thing.
There's nothing particularly fancy or spectacular about Washable Ewe, but it is a nice, usable, inexpensive yarn that would be great for baby blankets and other wee accessories, kids clothes and colorwork for people of all ages.
And given that the yarn retails for about $5 a skein, you'll want to make a lot of projects with this yarn that's a great bargain without feeling cheap. It's available online and at Jo-Ann Fabric Stores.