Cascade Eco Duo

Has anyone else here used this yarn? And if so, what was your experience with it? On paper, I love it. It’s undyed, 70% alpaca 30% merino and soft like buttah. But what I’m finding is that it’s … unplying as I work with it. That may not be the right technical term, and in fact may not actually be what it’s doing, but the symptoms are that it’s turning to fluff and the marl is fading into oblivion. And I don’t know if it’s the yarn or just me. Probably it’s just me, which is both good and bad in that if it’s me I can DO something about it… if I know what. If it’s the yarn, then I’m kinda stuck with what it does.

By way of general information (I don’t know if any of this is relevant) I’m working 2 strands together on US 10.5 needles for a gauge of about 3.5-4 sts/in. I’m not noticing that it’s overly tight – or loose for that matter. According to Jimmy Beans, the gauge should be about 4-5 sts/in on US 8 for one strand, so I don’t feel like I’m overtaxing 2 strands at this gauge (but who knows?).

Any thoughts on what’s going on here? I really like the yarn, and in this particular project, it’s not a HUGE issue, but it doesn’t seem like it ought to be behaving this way.

I have never used this yarn myself but, there are plenty of comments on it over at Ravelry.

Seems everyone loves how soft it is. A few people said it sheds. A few people said it pills. No one complained about the plies coming apart as they knit.

I think it’s a single ply or loosely plied so may untwist easier. Watch how you turn at the end of a row that you don’t go the same direction all the time, and if you do LT CO you might have to let go of the thumb yarn to let it wind up again. Also the way you hold and wrap the yarn might untwist it somewhat.

I would also suggest you use a larger needle too, because you’d probably get the same gauge single stranded on the 10½s you are now with it doubled. It’s really a light bulky/aran not a worsted, so doubled up would be more of a super super bulky and the gauge would be something like 2-3 sts per inch which you should get on size 11 or 13. A true worsted doubled would be a super bulky in the first place, not a bulky.

I didn’t use the LT CO, but I’ll watch the turns and the yf/yb’s and see if that might be doing it. I sorta suspected it might be coming from the way I was wrapping it around the needle (which may be part of it) but I didn’t think about what was happening in the turnaround at the end of a row.

As for the gauge/weight, I’m just going by what’s listed. The Cascade Eco and Eco+ are bulky weight, but the Eco Duo? It’s about the same (to my eye anyway) as Cascade 220. This is the stuff I’m using:

But thanks! I have some things to watch now. I suspect it’s more the knitter than the yarn… it usually is – at least when the knitter is me :wink:

Still, even a worsted will get the same gauge single stranded on 10½s that you’re getting with it doubled. Unless there’s some reason you want it that tight, I think 11s may help the untwisting problem a little - try that on a sample to see.

Loosening up your grip on the yarn helps with these single plies. They’re very soft but very loosely spun and easy to break or untwist. Releasing the yarn and letting it twist back up will help with the strength of the fiber too.

Ravelry says the yarn is singles and at least one knitter said its loosely plied singles so it was splitty. I’ve noticed with some yarn I’ve had this problem, too. I think it’s a combination of the yarn and the way you knit.

Thanks all!

I think my initial assessment was probably correct; I may be just a little heavy handed for this yarn. The unwinding/untwisting problem seems to be more of an issue when I’m purling several consecutive stitches, suggesting that there may be something in the way I’m wrapping the yarn doing a purl stitch (which has always been a little awkward for me anyway) that puts a twist in the yarn in the direction opposite the way it’s spun.

As to the gauge, it’s a scarf so I want it somewhat dense (it’s supposed to be warm!) but I haven’t noticed the stitches being especially tight on 10.5s. In any case I have about a foot and a half of scarf already, so don’t put a large bet on me starting over at this point.

This is more of an annoyance than it is anything – at least in this project – so I’m not worried about hair loss or anything. But what I’m learning here is probably going to affect how I choose yarns for future projects. At least until I figure out how to not untwist single ply yarns. I haven’t worked with them much, which is probably why I’ve never noticed this before. And probably I would have chosen something else this time, but this was as close as I could come to matching the cat! :wink:

but this was as close as I could come to matching the cat!

Suggestions for future reference[/B]

  1. Save all cat hair you can get.

  2. Felt it.

Apparently felting and fulling are not the same thing and what we call felting is really fulling as it’s done after spinning and knitting.

By following steps 1 and 2 as shown above you can skip the whole knitting process. Or…

  1. Just wear the cat around your neck.

The advantage to #3, besides the work not involved, is that eventually you and your clothes will all match the cat.

:roflhard: that works!

What can I say. Adhere to the KISS philosopy (Keep It Simple, Sweetie). Life’s complicated, why make it harder?

[B]Addendum to List in Post #9[/B]

BONUS: It’s cheaper than buying yarn. You save time, money, and effort.

Well #3 is out… Clyde would NEVER consent to being worn. She only rarely tolerates being picked up.

I have actually spun cat hair after a fashion. I’ve pulled the hair out of the cat brush and twisted it between my fingers, and you’d be astonished at how readily it stays together. Then again, maybe you wouldn’t. It would take an AWFUL lot of brushing to get enough cat roving to make a scarf though. Plus you wouldn’t get the right marl in the yarn to actually match… not that I’ve been able to find that anyway. :sigh:

Hadn’t thought of felting it though. And yes, felting is done with roving, what we normally call felting is properly called “fulling”. There remains the problem of supply though. Even if she’d consent to it, I don’t think even shearing Clyde would yield enough. She’s not that big a cat.

Mmm… not so sure about that one. the time it would take to accumulate enough cat roving would cover numerous trips to the yarn store. Collecting said roving would involve far more effort than plonking down a wad of cash for a couple of balls of yarn and as for expense… well, have you BEEN to the ER recently? :lol: