Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Free Pattern: The Perfect Loofah

At long last, here it is... the pattern for my Perfect Loofah! But first, some pictures.










The most important component of this pattern is the yarn. I used Bernat Cool Crochet, which unfortunately has been discontinued. Here are the things that make this the perfect yarn for The Perfect Loofah:
1. Cotton is ridiculously absorbent. Nylon is not. This yarn is 70% cotton and 30% nylon, creating a nice balance between being soft (yay cotton!) and not sucking up all your soap never to be seen again (yay nylon!).
2. Nylon is resistant to mildew/mold. This is very useful for something that's going to be wet a lot.
3. It's sport weight. Worsted weight is just too heavy to make a good loofah. You need some air between the stitches in order to create suds.
4. Did I mention nylon dries faster than cotton? I guess this is a subsidiary of #1. The low absorbency of the nylon helps it dry out between uses.
5. It's machine-washable. The label says "dry flat" but seriously, I'd like to see you try to get a loofah to dry flat. I test washed mine before putting my first one up for sale and I put it in the dryer. It came out okay but looking a little rougher, so I'd recommend hanging it up to try. Low heat tumble drying might be okay - mine went in on permanent press. 

Right, so the perfect yarn is no longer for sale, so what the heck are you supposed to do then? Well, if you're super lucky, you have some Cool Crochet hanging out in your stash, but if not, I've seen it for sale on both etsy and ebay. But I bought it, so it might be all gone :). You might also be able to swap with someone on Ravelry. (Hmm... maybe I shouldn't be telling you all this). 

I have had a lot of trouble finding another yarn that is a sport (or fingering) weight cotton/nylon blend that doesn't have something else in it - like wool. It's possible that there are sock yarns out there that might fit the bill, but I haven't found any yet. Another option might be trying a cotton/acrylic blend. The acrylic should still help with the super-soap-sucking power of cotton, make the loofah lighter/less dense, and help it dry faster. But, as far as I know it's not mildew-resistant. 

If you try a different yarn, PLEASE  let me know how it works out for you! I'm making these for my etsy shop, and I only have so much Cool Crochet, so having another type of yarn to use would be awesome. 

And now for the actual pattern. 

I ask that you respect the time and creativity I put into developing this pattern by giving credit where credit is due. Please contact me first if you are interested in selling your finished products. Thanks.


Materials:

35 g Bernat Cool Crochet (see above for reasons why this is the perfect yarn)
Size I9 (5.5mm) crochet hook
Yarn needle


Abbreviations:

st: stitch ch: chain sl st: slip stitch dc: double crochet


Instructions:

ch 4, form a ring by joining with a sl st in first st 
ch 40 
sl st into center of ring (this forms the loop for hanging the loofah)

R1: ch2, dc 4o into center of ring, join with sl st (4o st)
R2: ch2, dc 3 in each st around, join with sl st (120 st)
R3: ch2, dc 3 in each st around, join with sl st (360 st)
R4: ch2, dc 3 in each st around, join with sl st (1080 st)

Bind off. Weave in ends. 

87 comments:

  1. You used an I hook and single stranded Bernat Cool Crochet? or did you double it?
    Thanks ..

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  2. Hi vegancrochet. That's right - I used an I hook (5.5 mm) and single stranded Cool Crochet.

    Having space in the stitches helps create suds and helps to avoid becoming a dense heavy blob that just soaks up your water and soap.

    Let me know if you have any other questions :)

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  3. Thanks for the pattern befriendmantic I made one the other day from plain cotton and it turned out to be just what you said a dense heavy blob that just soaks up water and soap. I will have to try and find some of this yarn so I can make myself a better one. Any suggestions of who might still have some?

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  4. Hi Chooosy40. I just checked on ebay and it looks like there are 3 or 4 sellers with Cool Crochet in various colors for 3.50-4.00/skein.

    I also know of at least one person who recently saw it on sale in AC Moore. I don't have any big craft stores nearby, so I can't verify, but it's probably worth a look or a phone call.

    I'm doing some research into other possible yarns, so I'll post an edit on here when I've found some good substitutes.

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  5. I live a hop, skip and a jump away from the Bernat factory outlet, they have a tent sale in mid-August, if you wanted I can see if they have cool crochet available, they have every other time I've been there. If they do, I can pick some up and get it to you, I just would want a little extra $ for gas, so that it helps me support my YAS habbit... lol

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  6. Found some Cotton/nylon blend yarn on this site:

    http://www.yarn.com/webs-knitting-crochet-yarns-fiber-nylon-polyamide/webs-knitting-yarns-berroco-zen-colors/

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  7. Discontinued Yarn Brands has a 55/40/5 cotton/nylon/polyester. Not sure if this would work, but seemed the closest I could find to the blend you are looking for

    www.discontinuedbrandnameyarn.com It is the Marco Polo yarn.

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  8. BTW---thanks so much for this pattern. I have some blend I am going to use and see how it comes out. What a great gift!!!

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  9. How about something from this site: http://www.cottonclouds.com/shopping/yarns.asp. There are a few cotton blends there that seem to be sport wt. Has anyone ever used bamboo yarn? Is it like cotton in any way? I see at least one bamboo/cotton blend on that site and am wondering how absorbent or not-absorbent bamboo is. Love the pattern - it looks like a brain!

    Joy

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  10. Patternworks has 12 ply cool coton $5.00

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  11. You also might want to check out www.smileysyarns.com and look at some of the yarns there for fiber content. They have really good prices and there is a minimum but I have had great service from them when I buy.
    PJ
    Schenectady, NY

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  12. You can search for yarn by fiber content at yarndex.com - bet you'll find something there!

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  13. It just hit me.

    Why couldn't two strands of thread work?

    Perhaps a size 5 or 3 of cotton, with a matching or contrast color of size 10 nylon thread?

    Using both threads on the hook at the same time.

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  14. Thank you all so much for the wonderful suggestions!

    The Berroco Zen and the Marco Polo both look like good possibilities. My only concern is that they're both worsted weight, so it may come out very dense and heavy, and you will need more yarn to get the same yardage, increasing the cost. I'm also not sure how well the ribbon style of the Berroco Zen would work.

    I think bamboo has properties more similar to cotton than nylon since they are both plant fibers. So I suspect that a cotton/bamboo blend would be more similar to 100% cotton than to a cotton/nylon blend.

    I am currently trying out Naturally Caron's Spa yarn which is a DK weight acrylic/bamboo blend. It's really soft but I haven't tried using or washing it yet, so I'll post an update after I do.

    Two strands together sounds like a great idea! I'll have to see if I can find the appropriate sizes and give that a try too.

    Please feel free to comment with your experiences with this pattern and different yarn types! I'm loving all these ideas :)

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  15. recycled cotton yarn by lion brand. 72 cotton, 24 acrylic, 2 other. I'm going to try this out.

    lionbrand.com/yarns/recycledcotton.html

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  16. I'm making mine out of Lily Sugar'n'Cream yarn. It's working up nicely. This yarn works well for scrubbies and washcloths, so the pouf should be no different. The multicolor yarn makes it look very interesting.

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  17. Just found some 100% nylon yarn at the store that actually seems pretty soft. I'll give it a go and report back! Thanks for the pattern!

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  18. *thread, not yarn

    It was J.&P.Coats crochet nylon ($3.49 for 150yds) and the loofah turned out fantastic!

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  19. Please take a look at this site about Red Heart Eco Cotton...looks like a very similar blend as the cool crochet? Price is reasonable too : )...Nancy

    http://www.createforless.com/C_and_C+Red+Heart+Eco+Cotton+Blend+Yarn+3oz+145yd+Moss/pid155521.aspx?utm_source=googlebase&utm_medium=cse

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  20. Hi Nancy, thanks for the suggestion! It is a pretty similar blend except the Eco Cotton has acrylic and the Cool Crochet has nylon.

    Because it's a heavy worsted weight, I would be concerned that it would be super absorbent and not give a good lather, but it looks like a couple people on ravelry have tried the pattern with the Eco Cotton with good results.

    If you're on ravelry, you can check out their projects, here:

    http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/the-perfect-loofah/people?status=&group=&photoless=1&photoless=0&search=%22Red+Heart+Ltd.+Eco-Cotton+Blend%22

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  21. I just bought some yarn to make a loofah with. It's Deborah Norville's Serenity. It's a sport weight yarn 55% nylon and 45% acyrillic. Suuupppeeerrr soft! Machine washable and tumble dry. I'll let you know how it comes out! Thanks for the pattern!

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  22. This pattern looks great! I can't wait to try it out- while looking for the yarn, I found a 3 pack at Herrschners for $9.97 (or singles for $3.79) - you have to pay shipping, but still thought it was a good deal :>

    http://www.herrschners.com/product.aspx?sku=010314P&qid=

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  23. Love the pattern! Thank you for sharing it! :) I found a DK weight 88% Cotton/12% Nylon yarn on http://www.yarn.com/webs-knitting-crochet-yarns-weight-dk/webs-knitting-yarns-ella-rae-baby-cotton/

    It's about $5 a skein, plus shipping though.

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  24. I sought out the yarn first and find Lion Brand Baby Soft (60% Acrylic, 40% Nylon) in cream...

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  25. I just used the pattern with NaturallyCaron Spa which is acrylic and bamboo - very soft and seems to work fine. One 3oz is just a bit short to make two so I may try an "H" and see if I can get two from the next one. Thanks for the pattern.

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  26. I tried to suggest this idea to my husband, and found some cotton Lily Sugar n Cream yarn on sale...but it's worsted weight, and all cotton, so probably will turn out to be a blob of a mess absorbing all the soap :-(

    So, looking for a "synthetic" yarn that has properties similar to the plastic loofah- especially since my hubby likes the "exfoliating" (i.e. not soft) properties of the loofah. Any ideas??

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  27. Cotton - Too heavy.
    Nylon - Can't find.
    Cotton/Acrylic Blend - Works Great!!
    Acrylic/Nylon Blend - Trying now, I'll leave another comment when I finish.

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  28. I have what maybe a silly question, but this being the internt and all :)
    Are these american DC or European DC? (American triples) I couldnt find anywhere in the pattern whether it was american or european.

    thanks!

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  29. American... sorry I didn't specify!

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  30. Thanks! that was FAST! *Giggle*
    The reason I ask is that I am not getting a lot of space between the DCs, maybe it will open up more after use? lol

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  31. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  32. I really want to try this but I am confused. What does 4o mean?

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  33. would chenille work if you can find it?

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  34. Thanks for sharing the pattern. I had tons of Cool Crochet in my stash. I was planning on making purses with it but these are great. I was looking at yarns on garnstudio. Their cotton viscose might work for this. It's a DK weight, 54% egyptian cotton, 46% viscose. Here's a link - http://www.garnstudio.com/lang/en/visgarn.php?garn=CottonViscose

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  35. Hi Befriendmandtic!
    Thank you for your pattern of puff! I like to try a differents patterns of them. It's my second puff that I do and I prefer your, because it's more dense. I do it whit Bernat Cotton and it's very soft.

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  36. I did two loofah whit Bernat handcrafter cotton and the result it's perfect! I have many patterns of loofah and my prefered it's your!

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  37. Would an 60% acrylic and 40% nylon work? that's what the bernat sock yarn is, i would really like to make these for Christmas presents, but i want to find the right yard first.

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  38. Thanks for your comment! I think a 60/40 acrylic/nylon blend would work, but the best way to find out is to try it out :) I have also had good success with Naturally Caron Spa which is 75/25 acrylic/bamboo. Please post here and let us know how it works out!

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  39. Hey befriendmantic, I just did a search on Ravelry and found Cascade Yarn's Cotton Rick DK. It looks like the perfect solution to your discontinued yarn.
    http://www.ravelry.com/yarns/library/cascade-yarns-cotton-rich-dk
    Thanks for offering the pattern. It looks great. :)

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  40. I just purchased some Cascade Yarn Cotton Rich - 64% Cotton, 36% Nylon at a local shop - I will work it up and repost!

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  41. I live in Canada and used Red Heart Eco-Ways yarn purchased at WalMart. It is 70%acrylic and 30% recycled polyester. It is a medium worsted. A US product. It worked up nice and seem to work well. It is not drying as fast as I thought hanging in the shower. The yarn is machine washable and dryer safe on low heat. Does the nylon dry that much faster? Thanks for the pattern and like the idea to include in xmas gift baskets for friends.

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  42. Hi,this is a super cool pattern! I can't wait to try it :) I have been searching everywhere for a pattern like this!
    Checked out your etsy store to look for a pattern to buy (so I could sell some) but couldn't find anything listed? Help?!

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  43. This is great. I wonder how this would work using Plarn (plastic yarn made for grocery bags)

    Keep up the good work
    JCG

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  44. This would also make a cute Christmas decoration for the tree, just use different colors and decorate them a little bit. Cool pattern.
    Thanks.

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  45. you can buy cool yarn here:

    http://www.herrschners.com/Product/Bernat+Cool+Crochet+Yarn.aspx

    Pam

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  46. I AM MAKING A LOOFA RIGHT NOW OUT OF A BRAND NAME CALLED PHENTEX IT IS 100% OLEFINE EXELON IT IS GREAT FOR SLIPPERS AND SUCH ALSO VERY EASY TO CLEAN AND HOLDS THE SHAPE WELL . I LIVE IN CANADA AND PHENTEX HAS BEEN AROUND SINCE I WAS A KID AND I REMEMBER MY MOTHER MAKING THINGS OUT OF THIS WOOL IT SI STILL EASY TO FIND TOO

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  47. Do you think Lion Brand's cotton bamboo? It's 52% cotton and 48% rayon from bamboo. It's a bit heavier than baby yarn but lighter than worsted. This pattern is so unique and different - and easy - right up my alley. Thanx
    es

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  48. I just made one up withe some 70% Acrylic and 30% Nylon, it came out good, I tried it, and it seemed to hold up good too. Maybe I'll made the rest of them out of this ball. I'm assuming it will take a bit longer to dry, but hey for a little bit of work, a loofah that would last long time=good thing.

    Thanks for the pattern.

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  49. So I tried the 70% Acrylic and 30% Nylon loofah I made the day before yesterday, and didn't work as good as I thought.

    It absorbed too much water, and kept it in there. Also its a pain in the rear to try and rinse it out, cause you have all that soap that was sucked in.

    Maybe next I'll try the netting, as soon as I find the netting.

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  50. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  51. I found several more, fingering weight, bamboo/nylon blends - just had to adjust my search. ;)

    www.yarndex.com

    when you find a yarn you like, you can click on the manufacturers website, then find it near you - or order from Yarndex. Very cool!

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  52. I made a pdf file of this post for you to use as a quick download if you'd like. Just zip me an email (available on my profile)

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  53. I CANT BELIEVE HOW NICE THEY TURN OUT I HAVE DONE ABOUT A DOZEN OF THEM FOR GIFTS FOR CHRISTMAS I HAVE ALREADY TAKEN ORDERS TO MAKE FOR CHRISTMAS FOR FRIENDS .THANK YOU FOR THE PATTERN IT WORKS UP FAST AND I AM PROUD THAT I CAN GIVE A HOME MADE GIFT TO THE ONES I LOVE

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  54. Paton's has a sock blend that is 70% washable wool and 30% nylon. I found it at Michael's for about $3.50 for 50g.

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  55. Found a yarn that might just work. Berroco Mica yarn is 31% Cotton, 26% Silk, 23% Nylon, and 20% Linen. The care instructions are hand wash cool and lay flat to dry, but you could wash in washer on hand wash or delicate cycle. Of course, how could you lay a loofah flat to dry? This yarn can be found at www.anniesattic.com. It's a bit pricy - regular $7.99 a skein (35g skein, 108yds), but watch for sale prices. I found it on this website on sale for $4.99 a skein. (12/31/10)

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  56. P.S. Berroco Mica yarn is a light weight yarn (3).

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  57. Found a skein of Cool Crochet in my old stash. Made the scrubber, but was not impressed with it at all. Too soft, to flimsy. I like to exfoliate when I shower. I will stick with the store bought variety made of netting.

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  58. Thanks for the pattern!! Cotton/Acrylic blends have antimicrobial properties from the acrylic part, meaning that it will resist mildew and microbacterial formation. Hope this helps.

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  59. Hello bridgit,

    I sent you a message via ravelry concerning this loofah. I wanted to know if you would be ok for me to translate it in french?

    Thanks a lot for your answer.

    Casa

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  60. I made a different style of a loofa wash puff and I used wool-ease

    80% acrylic (which works like an exfoliator)
    20% wool (soaks up just enough water and the lanolin in the wool helps your skin, dried within a few hours, and has some anti-fungal/anti-mold properties)

    I haven't machine washed or dried yet but after 2 uses it's still in great shape and my skin is baby soft!

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  61. I've made two of these so far. I tried Handicrafter Cotton even though I knew it wouldn't work in practice. It looked GORGEOUS but it's been almost a week and it's still not dry.

    I also made it with Lion Brand "Cotton Ease" which is 50% Cotton and 50% Acrylic. Again it was gorgeous however it doesn't dry well either. It dried faster than the 100% cotton one but still way too long.

    I will post again when I find something that works a bit better!

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  62. Hiya all, Have only just started crochet again, and now collecting patterns to do in winter evenings. But there is a slight problem, don't know what to ask for as I'm in the UK. and u have tried n tested quite a few......any suggestions plzzzz. thanx for pattern.

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  63. I absolutely love this! I'm halfway done with mine. I'm going to make several more to give as gifts! Thanks for the pattern!

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  64. What about acrylic yarns? Has anyone tried them?

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  65. I found a yarn that is 64% cotton and 36% nylon. It is a sports weight yarn called Cascade Cotton Rich.... here is a link to a website where I found it... http://www.whiteliesdesigns.com/yarn/1209.html. Hopefully it will work.

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  66. There is also another yarn i found although it's a little pricey... It is 63% cotton and 37% nylon. It is called Luscious Cotton by Cotton Cloud. It's *gasp* (hurts to even type this) $19.95 for 100grams/345 yards.

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  67. ^^^ forgot to add the link for this. http://www.cottonclouds.com/shopping/yarn_info.asp?id=142&cat=&weight=&fc=&panelID=1&g=

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  68. I used tulle for mine. I found a spool of it that was 6" wide and I think 20 yds long. At michael's it's $2.99...use a coupon to bet it even cheaper. At Joann's it's $1.50 a yard. So unless you want a lot of the same color, or to have to connect shorter pieces, the spool is a better bet. I cut it half to have 3" wide, very long pieces. I put the spool on a broomstick and had someone hold the scissors as I pulled...if that makes sense. Then I used it as you would yarn. Haven't used it yet, but it feels really nice! Make sure you use the really soft tulle, not nylon netting, which is usually cheaper. Unless you want the extra exfoliating! I used a K hook because I couldn't find my I, and used more than 20 yds. Think I would have still needed more than the 20 even with the I. But for the $1.50 I spent, I like it better than the regular puff you buy. Thanks for the pattern!

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  69. I found a 20% nylon 80% cotton blend http://www.yarn-paradise.com/soft_cotton_lase and I plan on trying it with this as soon as it is delivered. I will let you know how it urns out

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  70. I found a new (to me) type of yarn called "Scrubby" by Sugar 'n Cream at Michael's craft store the other day. I'm going to try your pattern with this yarn and I will let you know how it goes.

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  71. Darn it! Not enough yarn. :( It was a 50g ball (68 yds) and I only got almost all the way around in the second round. I will just have to finish it off with cotton. We'll see how that goes. :-/

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  72. Nice thanks for the pattern I've saved it to my favorites for now, once I'm a little better at crocheting I might come back and make several for christmas baskets rather then buying them. :)

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  73. I am trying it with Caron mercerized cotton which is a light weight 100% cotton. I will let u know how it works.

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  74. It didn't work out. It was floppy & just kept ruffling & never went into the ball shape.

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  75. I would like to make some of these , have you sorted what yarn is best? I am in the UK though

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    Replies
    1. Hi Dreadlocks! I have had success with Naturally Caron Spa (a bamboo/acrylic blend), but I'm not sure whether it's available in the UK. I think your best bet is to check out some of the other comments here, and you can also see what other people have used on ravelry.com.
      http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/the-perfect-loofah/people

      Delete
  76. Just looking guys...I make a LOT of crochet products from patterns and was trying to figure this one out but couldn't sort out what she meant by the 4o....is this just 40 stitches? Thanks for any help!

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  77. @The Handmade Heritage, if you mean round 1, it's just a typo - it should read "dc 40 into the center of the ring ... (40 sts)". So there should be 40 dc's in the first round.

    I used a magic ring instead of the ch 4 loop because I made my loofah with hemp which doesn't have a lot of give. I could make the magic ring wide enough to accommodate the 40 sts and then pull on the tail to close the ring. No way was I getting 40 dc sts into a ch-4 loop, and I didn't want to make a longer change because it would have left a big hole in the center. Hope to blog about it soon.

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  78. very cool! I hope to be able to make one soon!

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  79. I'm crocheting my 1st one.... I asked bernat if there is a substitute for the cool crochet and they told me satin crochet sport is the sub for the cool... I'm on round 3 can't wait till it's finished and I use it... thanks for sharing the pattern....

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  80. I did try making this with Spa and we absolutely love it! It's durable, lathers great, rinses well and doesn't mildew. Fantastic suggestion. I did learn from yarnspirations.com that Spa is discontinued. I got mine at anniescatalog.com several months ago. I'll bet you can still get this online and even in a few yarn stores.

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  81. nylon plastic canvas yarn works great!

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  82. I am a little late to the party as far as yarn goes, but I have a few possibilities that should help:

    https://www.herrschners.ca/product.aspx?id=11091&pid=187105 It is a worsted weight, but is primarily used by crafters for washcloths and the like and it dries fairly quickly and is awesome soft.

    http://www.willowyarns.ca/Product/Cub+Yarn.aspx This is also a worsted weight but I have used it for several projects that were going to get wet and it worked out pretty well... and lastly...

    http://www.willowyarns.ca/Product/Ripples+1.aspx This is a light yarn in fantastic ripple colours, all funky and fresh! Any one of those should work for all your ladies who are wanting to go loofah crazy!

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  83. Thank you so much for this pattern and great tips. I cannot express how grateful I am. Huggsss

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