Green Knitting: A Gorgeous Blanket Project
I’ve been looking for a bed coverlet to knit with a soothing neutral palette. Generally, I am attracted to knitted projects that are brightly patterned with a rainbow of colors. When I spotted this Log Cabin quilt, I took a double-take. Is it quilted or is it knitted?
The quilt is hand knitted with yarns of varying degrees of un-dyed neutral hues. This blanket creates an aesthetic that provides the perfect mix of classic styling with a modern twist. Before we dig into all the loveliness of Purl Bee’s, Half Log Cabin Ombre Blanket, let’s take a quick look at how to green up the craft of knitting.
The Nasty Side of Knitting
Knitting is generally not the greenest of crafts. It tends to be expensive. Much of the yarn is dyed with foul chemicals. The treatment of sheep can be questionable, and the manufacturing process is not energy-efficient.
In my reading for the Moms Clean Air Force, I discovered…
“Fertilizers used in livestock production and chemicals used in textile manufacturing can release considerable quantities of ammonia and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the air. VOC’s promote the formation of ozone in the air, which can act as a greenhouse gas.” ~ EDF
VOC’s are particularly dangerous to small children and animals. Yikes! All that nastiness, coupled with the knowledge that a large chunk of yarn comes from far-off places, stomps heavily on our carbon footprint.
The Green Side of Knitting
Look for wool that comes from animals that were raised organically and humanely. Organic yarn is available, and it adheres to similar rigorous requirements of organic meat. The sheep must be fed organic food and be free of injected growth hormones. Their fleeces cannot be washed in chemicals. Even managing organic livestock is more sustainable than mass farming because the overgrazing of sheep is limited. Look for companies that create safe dyes from non-hazardous, non-toxic, and heavy metal-free materials. Some companies conform to the Organic Trade Associations criteria for Organic Fiber Processing.
I chose this blanket pattern because I love the way the design transitions from cream to ecru to fawn colors. The un-dyed, neutral palette is fresh and natural looking. It exudes the calmness I wanted for the bed.
Images used with permission: Purl Bee