I was lucky enough to be asked to go to the Craft, Hobby and Stitch International Show at the NEC, Birmingham on the 17th February 2015. Most of the major yarn companies were there showing and selling their wares to the trade.
It was my first trade show for this sector (I attend plenty of them for my day job in waste management) and I really enjoyed it. Of particular enjoyment was the DMC launch of their new ‘Natura XL Just Cotton’ yarn.
It is a super-chunky yarn, which comes in 30 different colours from soft muted colours, perfect for baby garments through to the bold and bright.
During the launch I was able to play around with yarn and crocheted up a very quick heart using the soft subtle rose pink of colour 42. I then moved on to colour 85 which is another subtle tone but this time an apple green. For this I thought I would try knitting and used a basket weave to create a clutch with an inserted leather pouch so that combined they will become my knitting needle holder when I travel. Apart from the fact that I am new to knitting and crochet, I have never sewn leather. That said, I am really pleased with the outcome of the finished piece.
In case you were wondering, I haven't used grapes for toggles, they are semi-precious serpentine stones shaped like grapes. I have been waiting to use these on a project for a couple of months and was over the moon when I discovered that they were a very similar colour to DMC Natura XL colour 82!
As a novice crocheter and knitter I can happily say that the yarn was really easy to handle and work with. Initially I thought that the yarn was going to split but actually it didn’t – although I was making sure that I was keeping the yarn twisted.
Apart from the fact that I am new to knitting and crochet, I have never sewn leather. That said, I am really pleased with the outcome of the finished piece.
Each ball of Natura XL is 100g, made from 100% combed cotton and should be retailing for around £4.89.
The knitting needle pouch that I made used 90g (using DMC size 8 wooden knitting needles) and is beautifully soft. It is actually softer when it is knitted up than it is as a ball of yarn – which is going some because it is already quite soft as a ball.
Having added a leather pouch into the knitted clutch it showed me just how stretchy the yarn is - not something that I would normally associate with something that is 100% cotton. This isn't tough leather either, it is really very soft and flexible.
The chunkiness of the yarn means that it is great for quick instant gratification projects. I’m not a speedy knitter by any stretch of the imagination and the knitting needle pouch took me about 4 hours to knit and make up. With the leather work as well, this piece took me about 10 hours in total.
I would happily recommend this yarn for crochet or knitting projects.