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Old 07-25-2006, 04:47 PM   #1
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I have some wool questions.

I have been led to believe that I was allergic to wool by my mom for years. I have since found out that this was not true. I want to try it with my DD. This is probably a dumb question, but I am so limited in what I can spend, I wonder if I find a soaker that is too big in my price range...can I shrink it? I mean I know that it will shrink if wash and dried, but will it shrink reliably down a specific amount? Just wondering. I am just lost where to start. Ya' know? Also, I can sort of sew and when I thought I shouldn't use wool, I made a recycled acrylic soaker. I don't know how well it will hold up in the wash...lol. I don't have a serger, so I had to zigzag what I could. It turned out super cute. So if I find wool sweaters at a thrift shop, do I wash and dry them first before cutting them to make a recycled one? Then once made do I lanolize? Just give me some tips and info. I suppose. I covet the knitted soakers, but I can't afford them right now.

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Old 07-25-2006, 05:08 PM   #2
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Re: I have some wool questions.

http://mytwosunshines.tripod.com/

she does recycled wool really cheap but not soakers....
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Old 07-26-2006, 03:10 AM   #3
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Re: I have some wool questions.

I would not suggest buying too big and shrinking. When I shrink my wool down for soakers, I have to watch it pretty carefully and pull it out before it shrinks too much - you want felted wool, but if it super-felts, it looses all it's stretch and doesn't work very well. If you bought more than just a smidge too big, and then shrunk, you would end up with a very thick, bulky super-felted soaker that would have no stretch - which would make it either impossible to get on, or impossible to get it to stay up.

If you make your own out of wool, yes, you should wash first to felt up some. You *can* do them with unfelted wool, but I would only do it with really thick unfelted wool, personally. Just check frequently while it's agitating in the wash to see how thick it's getting and how much stretch is left. I learned the hard way that you have to check every sweater seperately each wash - some of my sweaters (all 100% wool) hardly felted at all after a hot wash and even a trip through the dryer. Others superfelted and were ruined (luckily they were cheapy thrift store sweaters) just in the wash. I was running them all in the same load, and checking just a couple. Ideally, you will catch the sweater when it has thickened up a bit, fibers have started to felt up, but before all the stretch is gone.
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Old 07-26-2006, 03:21 AM   #4
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Re: I have some wool questions.

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some of my sweaters (all 100% wool) hardly felted at all after a hot wash and even a trip through the dryer.
Some wool (in Europe it is often marked "superwash") is treated with a plastic stuff coating the fibres, that why it doesn't felt.
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Old 07-26-2006, 06:44 AM   #5
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Re: I have some wool questions.

If you have access to a sewing machine I would say that making your own recycled butt sweater soaker may be a great place to start. You can find 100% wool sweaters for suuuuuuuuper cheap at thriftstores. If you do a search in the craft chat forum you can find a bunch of links to patterns. HTH!!
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Old 07-26-2006, 08:12 AM   #6
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Re: I have some wool questions.

I would suggest looking for a used one....you can get some super deals out there for used hand knit soakers! I've seen them going for 5.00 on occasion! Did you post ISO?
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Old 07-26-2006, 09:29 AM   #7
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Re: I have some wool questions.

Thanks guys! I can sew, I made the acrylic one pretty easily. Thanks for clearing up the felting thing. I wouldn't have known about the stretch factor. I am definately going to hit some thrift stores and see what I can come up with.
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