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Mama, wife, knitter, blogger, spinner, wannabe something or other. That's enough, right?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Yarn Review #10: Lion Brand Cotton Ease

I must be all about getting things done lately. Perhaps it's the feeling of fall around here where I am busy doing "Fall Cleaning." It's like Spring Cleaning except, you know, it's in the fall. I suppose that means getting caught up and keeping caught up on things. Or something.

Anyway, let's have another yarn review :)

The intention is that once a month, roughly about mid-month (depending on the day - Year of Projects are on Sundays, WIP Wednesdays are on Wednesdays, and FO Fridays are on Fridays so rarely will you see a Yarn Review on those days), I'll do a yarn review, which may or may not include multiple types of the same yarn or multiple different yarns on the same day. The yarns in question, unless specified, are coming from my stash, purchased by me, for me, and for my use. I've been given no money or other non-monetary gifts for these yarn reviews. The reviews are of my opinion and based on my own experience and do not necessarily coincide with other fiber enthusiasts, though they may.

Disclaimer. There it is.

Lion Brand Cotton-Ease

1. Information about The Company: Lion Brand was founded in New York City in 1878 (making the company 135 years old) and has been family owned and operated for five generations. The official mailing address is in Carlstadt, New Jersey but that's just across the river from Manhattan. I think it's safe to say that they're still located in New York City. They boast taking a large part in the resurgence of knitting over the last decade (or so) including introducing novelty yarns like Homespun and Fun Fur that drew in a younger crowd, as well as having the first celebrity-licensed yarn that shares a portion of it's proceeds with a charity (in this case, St. Jude's).

2. Other Yarns Offered: Ravelry lists 200 yarns under the Lion Brand name including (but obviously not limited to): Homespun, Babysoft, Bonbons, LB 1878, LB Collection Pure Wool, Sock Ease, and they also include the Martha Stewart Crafts and Vanna's Choice lines.

3. Information about The Yarn:
     - Official Name: Lion Brand Cotton-Ease
     - Fiber Content: 50/50 cotton/acrylic
     - Skein Weight/Yardage: 100 g (3.53 oz.)/207 yds (189 m)
     - Gauge: 17 sts = 4" on US #8 (5 mm)
     - Yarn Weight: Aran
     - Washing Instructions: Machine wash, machine dry (tumble dry on low). Do not iron or bleach. Can also be dry cleaned in any solvent.
     - Where to Purchase: Most "Big Box" stores in the US will have this (Walmart, JoAnn Fabrics, Michael's) but you can also order it directly from the Lion Brand Website (noted above). On the Lion Brand website, it runs $7.69/skein. You can find it on Joann's website for $4.87 (down from $6.49). I couldn't actually find it on the Michael's website...but I've bought it there before so perhaps they've stopped carrying or it or it's just not available on their website.

4. Review (the real reason you're here):
     - PROS
          1. Machine washable. This is always a plus in my book.
          2. Smooth. I get really dry hands, especially in Wisconsin winters (not as bad here in California) so a yarn that doesn't get caught is lovely. Some cotton yarns can be really rough and maybe it's the acrylic content but this isn't as rough.
          3. Inexpensive. Seriously, this yarn is cheap and you get a ton. I've made two children's sized hats from one skein. What's even crazier is that I still had some left at the end.
          4. Stitch definition is fabulous! You can see everything you do with this yarn.
          5. Variety of colors. The Lion Brand website has 23 colors listed but I'm pretty sure there are more than that...just that some may have been discontinued. 
          6. Durable. This is a workhorse yarn and it's cotton. It should be durable. 

     - CONS 
          1. It's heavy. It's cotton yarn so it's going to be heavy...but it's also cotton so.....
          2. Not warm. It's heavy and it will keep you warm to a point...get a breeze and you'll start to shiver. Cotton wicks moisture away from the body, which is great when you're running and want to keep cool...not so great when you're trying to bundle up and stay warm. 
          3. Not waterproof. It's great for soaking up liquid...which makes it not so good for mittens, hats, and scarves, especially in weather-prone areas (where it snows or rains a lot). 
          4. Will stretch over time. Small items will usually bounce back into shape after a trip in the dryer but, generally, cotton is known to stretch and not bounce back very well. 

I love this yarn for things like dishcloths, baby blankets (I know, counterproductive but if you use them for floor blankets...), and toys. 

Some of the items I've made using Cotton-Ease:

I have plenty in my stash, too :)


  1. I have yet to warm up to cotton. A mix of cotton and wool I don't mind. I really like the purple star project.

  2. I'm making a toddler's dress for early spring... not too warm, not too cool. I wish they had stripes. I would hope the acrylic would keep it from stretching too much..? She'll prbly grow out of it quickly anyway.