Dear Wool, Can We Have Another Chance?

Dear 100% Wool,

I’m so sorry I abandoned you.  I loved you so much for your warmth in chilly, damp Northern New England. I didn’t like what a pain it was to wash you, but I’m so sorry, I didn’t know there were ways around that.

Can we try again?

All my love,


I’d been knitting with a wool/acrylic blend for the last year or two. I idly mentioned to the lady who owns my LYS1 the reason I was choosing the yarn I did, but that I liked wool’s insulating properties a googleplex times better.  It’s just that I only own five or six sweaters, so they do need to be washed several times a winter.

My LYS guru looked at me strangely, and mentioned a method she uses to wash wool sweaters.   You fill a washing machine with warm (not hot) water and a little gentle soap.  Then you turn it off, but leave the basin full.  Add the sweaters and drop a towel in if the load needs balancing.  Walk away from it for a half hour or so.  Then turn the water to the spin cycle.  This will get the water out without agitating the sweater too much.  then you take the sweaters out, fill again and repeat without soap for the rinse.

The spin cycle does remove the water far, far better than the roll it in a towel method.  This means that if I wash a load of sweaters, I don’t have the damn things on every large flat surface for more than a day.

I’m back to knitting with wool, my preferred fiber for sweaters.  They make a better, longer-lasting sweater.  I realize that there are people who are allergic to wool, but I’m not, so that’s what I’m making for me.

1Local Yarn Store

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