The popularity of crocheting has risen in recent years with many people of all ages discovering the joy of creating handmade items with their own two hands. And with this rise in popularity comes the demand for yarns, yarns, and more yarns that you can use to make beautiful pieces!
It’s important to think about the suitability of your materials before you start on your first stitch. After all, the yarn you use will determine the qualities of the final product.
Among all the options available to crocheters, cotton yarn is one of the most common crochet yarn types. It's made from the fibers of the cotton plant, resulting in a yarn that's durable and versatile enough to be used in clothing, bags, blankets, rugs, dishcloths, and many more.
Thinking of using cotton for your next crochet project? Note that cotton yarn is a category of its own with countless variations, so here’s what to keep in mind when choosing the best cotton yarn for your needs.
Crocheting with cotton yarn: Things to consider
Fiber content - The type of fiber used in crochet yarn greatly impacts the final product’s softness and durability. 100% cotton yarn is soft, comfortable, and breathable. No wonder why cotton clothing has been a wardrobe staple for thousands of years!
Philippine cotton. Photo from
Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority
Note that cotton does not stretch as much compared to other fibers, so it has to be blended with other fibers to get this quality.
Keep in mind too that not all cotton is created equal - some fibers are stronger and more durable than others depending on the variety of cotton. For example, Egyptian cotton and Pima cotton are known as premium varieties because of their long, fine fibers that can be spun into soft but strong yarns.
- Yarn weight - This affects the size and drape of the finished item. Lightweight yarns are perfect for creating delicate doilies and garments like shawls, while heavier weight yarns are ideal for creating bulky items like hats and sweaters. Cotton yarns come in all weights from fine crochet threads to jumbo yarns for hand knitting and crocheting.
- Yarn texture - Texture influences the appearance and feel of the final crochet piece. Smooth or shiny yarns can be used to create sleek and sophisticated pieces, while textured yarns can add interest and dimension to your work.
In addition to regular cotton yarn, cotton fiber can also be processed to create mercerized cotton and combed cotton. Mercerized cotton yarn has been treated to make it shinier, stronger, more receptive to dyes, and less stretchy than regular cotton. Combed cotton yarn on the other hand is softer and smoother because impurities have been removed from the cotton fibers before spinning.
Yarn color - Of course, no discussion about craft materials would be complete without talking about colors! Color is a key aspect for crocheters, as it impacts the aesthetics of the project. Whether you're creating a vibrant and colorful garment or a more subtle and elegant piece, having the right yarn color can make all the difference in the final look of your creation.
Cotton yarns come in a wide variety of colors and you’re sure to find the exact shade you want. Dyeing your own yarns is an option, too!
What can you make with cotton yarns?
Wearables: The combination of breathability, light weight, absorbency, and softness make cotton crochet yarns ideal for clothes. Garments made with cotton can keep you cool when the temperature rises, so it’s an especially good material for summer clothing! You can use cotton yarns for tank tops, shorts, skirts, dresses, and even cardigans.
Shell stitch cardigan by @uju_marryme made with Panublix cotton yarn
Accessories: You can make earrings, hats, headbands, bags and other accessories using cotton yarns, durable enough for everyday use.
Household items and decor: Cotton yarn is perfect for creating absorbent washcloths and dishcloths, decorative rugs and placemats, blankets and pillow covers.
Don’t let yourself be limited to the above list, however. As mentioned earlier, cotton yarns come in many, many varieties and the only limit is your creativity!
Take for example our own Panublix cotton crochet yarns—we’ve seen it used by crocheters in a wide variety of projects. It’s just one type of yarn but it’s amazing how they can create so many different pieces from it!
Let's take a look at some of the wonderful cotton yarn creations shared by the Panublix community:
Amelia top by @gi.heemo
Wallet and bucket hat by @crochetedbybelle
(Clockwise) Wisp Weave Oval by @gantsilyerista
Tulips by Sam of the Panublix design team
Tumbler holder by @sanyarn.ph
Scarf with pineapple motifs made by @arts.m.crafts
Panublix yarns can also be dyed with natural and synthetic dyes. Our cotton yarns in their natural form allows crafters to experiment with colors and create something that’s truly one-of-a-kind!
Fun fact: Panublix yarn is 100% Philippine-made! The cotton fibers are sourced from farms in the Western Visayas region and spun into yarn at the Regional Yarn Production and Innovation Center (RYPIC) in Miag-ao, Iloilo. The province of Iloilo, which used to be known as “textile capital of the Philippines,” has a rich history of textile production using natural fibers like cotton.
Wrapping it up: Why cotton yarn for crochet?
In conclusion, cotton crochet yarn offers a versatile and durable option for creating a wide range of beautiful crafts. Cotton's breathability, durability, softness, and absorbency make it ideal for both clothing and non-clothing items alike. The range of yarn weights, colors and textures available allows you to customize your projects to suit any style or preference.
The only limit for what you can make with cotton yarn is your own imagination - so don't be afraid to experiment and have fun. We hope this article has provided some inspiration to get you started!
Ready to give cotton yarns a try for your next crafting adventure? Panublix offers yarn made from 100% Philippine cotton. Get it here:
How do I care for cotton yarn projects?
It’s important to know how to care for and maintain crochet projects - after all, you want your creations to last for years to come!
Over time, repeated washing tends to stretch cotton and make the fabric softer. To help preserve the shape and color of your crocheted items, simply hand wash them in cool water with mild detergent and lay flat to dry for best results. Do not iron nor hang in the closet. Pieces should be stored folded, as the shape and dimensions may change if hung on a hanger.
Is cotton yarn hypoallergenic?
Yes, 100% cotton is hypoallergenic. When buying cotton blends however, make sure to check the yarn label for fibers like wool that may cause allergic reactions to sensitive skin.
Panublix's mission is to help shift the fashion and design industry towards a regenerative future. Through the Panublix platform, designers and crafters can easily source eco-fiber yarns and textiles made from cotton, pineapple, and abaca.