If you’ve ever had a dog, you are no doubt aware of the amount of dog hair that accumulates on your floor, furniture, and clothes. There have likely been times when you have said something along the lines of “There’s enough hair here to knit a sweater.” Well, if you ever get the desire to gather up all of that hair for such a purpose, the Chapin-Horowitz Collection of Books on Dogs can hook you up with “Knitting with Dog Hair: A Woof-to-Warp Guide to Making Hats, Sweaters, Mittens & Much More.”
According to the authors, dog hair “produces a yarn that has a lovely ‘halo’ of fuzz, much like mohair or angora. Though not as elastic, it is even warmer than wool.” Some of the reasons they advocate for knitting with dog hair include: it’s good for the environment, it’s kind to animals, and it reinforces family values because it is a craft the whole family can participate in.
In addition to various patterns for sweaters and cardigans, the authors provide a breed-by-breed run down of dog hair. For example, the Bullmastiff has a “lousy coat for spinning,” the English Pointer has “no spinnable coat at all,” but the English Setter provides a “fairly soft topcoat to blend.”
The authors also make a really good point, at least in my opinion: “. . . clothes made from a critter you know and love are just so much more special than clothes made from some anonymous sheep.”
As an aside, if you’re interested in needlepoint, we also have books that feature dog patterns!