Ann asks, "I am giving cook books to several of my friends for Christmas this year, and I want to crochet Christmas themed potholders to include with the gift. I'm new at this. What yarn should I use for crocheting my potholders? Please help.
Ann, what a creative and fabulous gift idea; thanks for sharing it with us. I'm betting your gifts will be well-received.
In answer to your question, I recommend using either kitchen cotton or wool yarn to crochet your potholders. Both fibers have pros and cons.
Crocheting Potholders in Cotton Yarn:
Cotton won't melt and is easily cleanable; both of these factors contribute to its popularity, and it's often used in a variety of different kitchen projects, including potholders, hot pads, dishcloths, placemats, coasters and others.
Crocheting Potholders in Wool Yarn:
Wool is also a great choice for potholders; not only will it not melt, but it's self-extinguishing, so if you accidentally catch it on fire the fire is likely to go out on its own.
The downside is that wool is not as easy to clean. If your potholders aren't designed to be felted, they might accidentally end up that way if the recipient machine washes and dries them.
Wool isn't the only self-extinguishing fiber, but wool is a more practical choice than some of the other possibilities available. For example, silk is also self-extinguishing, but I can't imagine making potholders out of silk yarn. You could do it, and if you did, I suppose they'd be the most elegant potholders ever -- but most people stick to making their potholders out of cotton or wool.
What Not to Use for Crocheting Potholders:
Do not use acrylic, polyester or similar fibers for crocheting potholders. Don't use plarn either. This is because any of the above might melt if they come into contact with a hot dish or other hot item.
You mentioned wanting to crochet some Christmas potholders for your friends. If you haven't already found patterns to use, I hope you'll check out the Christmas patterns and potholder patterns here on our website; I have several Christmas potholder patterns posted, and am adding more all the time. All of the resources on our website are free, including the patterns. A few more free patterns and ideas are linked below. Hope you'll find all this information helpful, and thanks for getting in touch.