It’s been a while since I wrote a product review. When I come across something that wows me though, I love to tell everyone about how amazing it is. Today I want to tell you about Cascade Heritage Sock Yarn.
I love making socks.
If I’m really honest I haven’t tried a huge number of different brands of sock yarn, but of all the ones I have tried, this is my new favourite!
Cascade Heritage Sock yarn is a line of 4-ply yarn in over 60 solid colours. Put up in 100g skeins, at 400m per skein the “mileage” is typical for a sock yarn. The price point is pretty typical as well. (Cascade has some “Heritage Sock Prints” as well, but I am specifically talking about the solids today as I haven’t knit the prints yet.) It is made up of 75% merino superwash wool and 25% nylon. Again, this is typical of sock yarns.
In case you are unfamiliar with sock yarns, the nylon adds strength and durability to the wool.
This makes a big difference when knitting socks as the toes and heels take a tremendous amount of abuse. Without the nylon content (or something similar) they wear out quickly. Considering the amount of work in a pair of socks, you really want to be sure the yarn is going to stand up.
After a friend showed me a skein of the print version of this yarn, I started hunting for where I could buy it for in my store. I contacted the supplier and asked whether they could send me a sample of the solids so I could knit it up myself and be sure I wanted to invest in stocking it. They happily sent me a sample. I thought I would use it in one of my Tour-de-Sock stages since that was what I was knitting at the time. I set it up on my swift and began winding the balls. I found that the yarn kept slipping over the top and bottom of the ball as I was winding it. I suspect that’s because the yarn is so very smooth, it doesn’t grab the ball like other sock yarns do. I am usually pretty ruthless when I wind sock yarn and spin the handle on the ball winder as fast as it will let me. I had to slow things down considerably in order for the winding to go smoothly. That irritated me a little, but to be fair, I’m impatient.
And to be honest, this yarn is well worth taking the time to wind carefully and slowly.
For the socks that I knitted up I used this yarn as my main colour. For my contrasting colours I used Knitca Sock. (Knitca Sock is put up in solid colours in 50g balls. The smaller balls means there isn’t as big of a spend when you are doing colourwork. The fibre content is the same.) By the time I finished casting on with Cascade Heritage Sock yarn, I was in love. This is by far the softest most luxurious feeling sock yarn I have encountered thus far. Knitca Sock is a pretty typical sock yarn in its feel. In comparison to the Cascade Heritage Sock, it felt downright scratchy. I had never considered it scratchy before, to put it into perspective.
Before I even finished knitting up the sample yarn, I placed an order. I have a small shop and there’s only so much I can spend bringing in new products. This one will be a new staple in my store. I have brought in a small selection of neutrals and a few colours that customers specifically asked me for so far.
I hope to be able to eventually carry the entire colour array of over 60 shades.
My DH sits next to me on the sofa at night, watching TV while I knit socks. He has always said not to bother knitting him any because “wool feels rough and scratchy”. After knitting the sample pair, I had him check out the socks. He immediately recognized the difference in the way the two brands of yarn felt. The response: raised eyebrows and a “Hmmmm… and that’s wool?” My response to that was, “Oh yeah, baby! That’s wool.”
I knitted up another pair for the competition in a creamy colour. When these were done. My DH picked them up and squeezed them. I asked him whether he thought I should make up a pair of socks in that yarn for him to test out. You know, just to see whether he could tolerate them. I told him that if he hates them, I won’t push to ever make him socks again. He agreed that he is willing to give them a try.
That, my friends is (IMHO) the best endorsement any sock yarn could ever ask for.
So after the competition is done, I will be delighted to make my DH’s first pair of hand knit socks.