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Mohair

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Mohair wool comes from Angora goats and is one of the most sought-after and exclusive fibers. Mohair wool is particularly distinguished by its unique sheen, which can also give a beautiful and characteristic fluffy look.

The Angora goat originally comes from Turkey. This large country has a varied climate, with both hot summers and cold winters. Mohair wool is therefore perfect for all types of climates, as the wool is highly breathable and comfortable in warm weather. This breathability means, for example, that moisture easily evaporates from the body if you sweat.

Conversely, mohair wool also helps to keep you warm during the colder periods of the year. Mohair is better at providing warmth than, for example, sheep wool fibers. This is because mohair wool fibers contain small air pockets, which make them both lighter and better at insulating. Mohair wool also does not contain lanolin like sheep wool, making mohair a more hypoallergenic choice.

Mohair is luxurious on its own, but it is also wonderfully suited to be spun with other fibers. The positive qualities of these exclusive fibers still stand out clearly and allow for the creation of some truly fantastic types of blended yarn.

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Mohair Yarn

Mohair yarn originates from the Angora goat and is one of the most exclusive natural fibers in the world due to its fantastic fiber structure.

Mohair is characterized by being very fine, curly, and extremely soft. This remarkable wool has highly insulating and warming properties, as well as being temperature-regulating and breathable. These qualities are essential for the Angora goat, which lives in very rugged terrain with severe temperature fluctuations, requiring them to maintain an appropriate temperature throughout the day and year-round. The same cooling and warming properties are also present in the yarn spun from these luxurious fibers. Therefore, mohair is one of the most sought-after yarn qualities for both knitting and crocheting, as it can be used year-round.

Yarn with Soft and Exclusive Properties

Mohair fibers share several of the same good properties as wool fibers but are also different.

Wool fibers from sheep are naturally coarse and are designed by nature so that the sheep's skin secretes fat, which forms a water-repellent layer on the fleece to ensure it stays clean and dry. This fat is called lanolin.

Mohair fibers, on the other hand, are much smoother, lighter, and curly, which means dirt and water cannot stick to them. In other words, mohair yarn does not contain lanolin, which is an advantage for those allergic to lanolin. The smoothness of mohair fibers also means that naturally, mohair is a very soft fiber that feels fantastic against the skin when used in items like cardigans or shawls. Mohair yarn is thus very suitable for people with lanolin allergies or very sensitive skin, or those who want to ensure they don't get itchy yarn.

Additionally, mohair is a very durable and elastic yarn due to its fiber structure. The elasticity is an advantage when it comes to knitted and crocheted garments such as a sweater, making them automatically easier and more comfortable to wear and move in. The high durability means that the sweater can withstand frequent use over a long time.

In other words, mohair yarn has some fantastic properties that transfer to the yarn spun from these lovely mohair fibers. You get a wonderful and exclusive all-year-round yarn with many uses.

The Fluffy Appearance of the Yarn

Mohair yarn has a very lustrous sheen and a fluffy and woolly appearance with soft fibers. The lightweight fiber is spun into an incredibly airy yarn quality, which you can use to knit or crochet a wonderfully light blouse that will not feel heavy to wear.

Mohair fibers are typically spun together with other fibers such as wool or silk to give the yarn an even better fiber composition. The structure remains extremely light, airy, and wonderfully soft.

Mohair yarn absorbs dye well and is therefore typically available in a multitude of different shades – from classic and natural colors to vibrant ones with much more pop on the color spectrum. Mohair yarn is available in both solid and print variants, where the yarn color itself creates a pattern as you knit or crochet.

Mohair as a Companion Thread

Since mohair yarn is relatively thin and fine, it gives you many possibilities for variation, and you can, for instance, use mohair as a companion thread along with another thicker yarn such as wool yarn. Using mohair as a companion thread will make the final knitted or crocheted result, like a sweater, appear fluffier, more fluffy, or more colorful than if you had only used wool. In other words, mohair yarn adds a lovely texture and an extra luxurious 'touch' to the finished result.

If you use a mohair companion thread in a different color than the other yarn, you will get a beautiful mottled color effect, giving your knitting or crochet work life and a unique appearance.

You can also easily knit with a single strand of mohair yarn alone, resulting in a delightful, airy, and possibly slightly transparent fabric. You can also knit with multiple strands of mohair yarn at once, resulting in a somewhat thicker and more plush knitting or crocheting outcome. Knitting with multiple strands of mohair simultaneously also allows you to mix colors and use different shades to achieve a unique color combination that will be almost impossible to replicate.

Properties of Mohair Yarn

As known, mohair is a fantastic fiber for yarn with many advantages, although there are also a few disadvantages to be aware of. Knowing the properties of mohair yarn makes it easier to get the most out of it and use it in the right knitting and crocheting projects.

Advantages of Mohair Yarn

  • Warm and insulating when it's cold
  • Breathable and cooling when it's warm
  • Incredibly soft
  • Lustrous sheen
  • Light and airy
  • Durable
  • Water-repellent
  • Dirt-resistant
  • Contains no lanolin, making it good for people with sensitive skin

Disadvantages of Mohair Yarn

  • Sheds a little (though this decreases after some use)
  • Not recommended for baby knitting because it sheds
  • Must be hand-washed

Good Knitting Projects for Mohair Yarn

The softness and elasticity of mohair make it a very pleasant quality to crochet or knit with. The good stretchability makes it easier to knit with and feels less strenuous on the hands.

Mohair has a structure and properties that make it particularly suitable for specific patterns. Mayflower has a wide range of patterns for mohair yarn, or where mohair yarn is used as a companion thread, and you can also use Mayflower's mohair yarn in other designers' crochet or knitting patterns as an alternative yarn. Just remember to check the knitting gauge before you start to ensure you follow the pattern's recommendations.

Good for Summer or Winter Clothing?

The properties of mohair yarn mean it is suitable for both warm winter clothing and airy and cooling summer clothing. The more strands of mohair yarn you use at once, the thicker and warmer a garment like a sweater will be. The natural insulating effect thus becomes even greater and better.

If you knit with only one strand of mohair, you get an airy and thin, almost transparent blouse or top, which will feel fantastic on a hot summer day. If you knit with mohair as a companion thread to cotton yarn, which has fiber content that makes it very suitable for summer clothing, you get comfortable summer wear with a fluffy appearance that is lovely and breathable.

Suitable for Texture and Pattern Knitting

If you want to knit or crochet in a pattern or texture, wool yarn like mohair is a great choice. The woolly appearance gives a beautiful effect, where the use of different colors blends beautifully, and textures like cables stand out nicely. The natural elasticity gives texture knitting a pleasant springiness, making it comfortable to wear and maintaining its shape.

Washing and Maintenance of Mohair Yarn

Mohair yarn should be washed very gently and by hand. The recommended temperature is a maximum of 30 degrees. The detergent should be suitable for wool and preferably distributed well in the water before adding the garment. Then the garment should be gently moved around in the water, as it should not be scrubbed or wrung hard. The fine and light stitch structure of the yarn can otherwise be damaged and displaced. Finally, the garment should be thoroughly rinsed to ensure all soap is removed. The garment is wrung by placing it on a towel, rolling it up to press the water out without wringing the garment.

The garment should then be dried flat and must not be tumble-dried.

FAQ About Mohair

What is mohair, and where does it come from?

The wool used to produce mohair wool comes from the Angora goat and is one of the most sought-after and exclusive fibers in the world due to its excellent and soft properties. The Angora goat originally comes from Turkey but now lives in many parts of the world.

Mohair wool fibers have a unique ability to adapt to the climate the Angora goat lives in. A country with a highly variable climate, offering both hot summers and cold winters, means that the fleece needed to adapt to the prevailing temperature. Mohair wool is therefore perfect for all types of climates, as the wool is both warm, temperature-regulating, and breathable.

Mohair wool also contains no lanolin, which is good for those allergic to lanolin and thus cannot wear clothing made from wool yarn, as their skin would otherwise react with itching. Since mohair fibers are naturally very smooth and soft as well as light and curly, dirt, grime, and water cannot automatically stick to the fleece. Mohair yarn is therefore an obvious yarn choice for people with very sensitive skin or lanolin allergies.

How do I wash mohair?

A sweater, cardigan, or shawl crocheted or knitted in mohair yarn should be washed very gently and by hand.

It is recommended to wash the yarn at a maximum of 30 degrees. The wool detergent should be well distributed in the water before adding the garment. Then the garment should be gently moved around in the water and should not be scrubbed or wrung hard. The fine and light stitch structure of the yarn can easily be damaged or displaced. Finally, the garment should be thoroughly rinsed to remove the soap. The garment is wrung by placing it on a towel and rolling it up to press the water out without wringing the garment.

The garment should then be dried flat and must not be tumble-dried.

Does mohair itch?

Mohair is one of the wool qualities that suit even the most sensitive skin and people allergic to lanolin found in traditional wool yarn.

Mohair is a very smooth, light, and curly fiber. Since the fibers are naturally very smooth, you won't find the same scales on mohair fibers as you find on wool fibers. Therefore, mohair yarn will also automatically feel much softer and more comfortable and will not be irritating to the skin.

Another thing that can irritate the skin is lanolin. Sheep wool contains lanolin, which comes from the sheep's skin. Lanolin forms a thin water- and dirt-repellent coating.

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