Cascade Ultra Pima: A Detailed Yarn Review | KT and the Squid

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. The wonderful people at Cascade Yarns provided the yarn for this review. I was not required to write a positive review. These opinions are 100% mine and are not biased in any way.

 


 

Yarn Name

Ultra Pima


Manufacturer 

Cascade/made in Peru


Yardage

220 yards/100 grams


Fiber Content

100% Pima Cotton


Weight

Light/DK/3


Washing 

Machine wash cool, tumble dry low


Price Range

$6-$10


Where to purchase online

Craftsy, Amazon, Amazon Canada

From the Yarn Company

“Ultra Pima is machine – washable and -dryable and has amazing stitch defintion and drape.  It is like mercerized cotton in look and care (AKA easy – great for kids), but is buttery soft and easy on the hands..” See more on their website HERE.

Initial Thoughts

Ultra Pima in available in over 90 colors. It comes in 220 yard hanks and is also available in a Ultra Pima Fine (did you see how cute the little hank is?). Upon first inspection it has a wonderful sheen to it. It also is a pretty dense yarn which tells me it will be great for warmer weather projects and will have nice drape when worked up.

So what is Pima cotton?  Pima cotton is named after a native american group that first cultivated this particular cotton. Now, it’s mostly cultivated in Peru. Basically, it’s a superior cotton blend known for being strong yet soft. It’s most similar to Egyptian cotton so if you’ve ever had or felt Egyptian cotton sheets Ultra Pima fees very similar. If you have never really felt Egyptian cotton think of the softest cotton t-shirt you own or have felt in a store. That’s how it feels.

Just picking up a hank you can clearly see how much drape it has.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

 

Ultra Pima is a smooth yarn, it’s loosely piled with 4 plies. Just by looking at it I can tell it will have wonderful stitch definition.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

My question is how will it look after being washed/worn. I could see it being used for baby items and they see quite a bit of wear in washing alone so I wanted to test it out.

 

How it Works up

I like using bamboo knitting needles and was worried they would have too much drag on the cotton but I was actually able to get a nice even tension with them (which I need help with). If you already have nice even tension aluminum hooks might be the way to go if you don’t want to be slowed down.

 

It crocheted up just as nicely. I’ve seen some people say cotton is a bit rough on their hands and I could see that too. I would say try not to tense up too much on it. If you relax and just go with the flow it works up like a breeze.

I made a few swatches and steam blocked them. I really didn’t see much of a difference before and after blocking. It looked great right off the hook but after washing I did notice it shrank just a little so be sure to account for that in your gauge swatch when starting a project.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

 

Like I thought the swatches had absolutely wonderful drape. This is great but you do want to be careful when choosing a pattern. If it was written for a wool yarn, using Ultra Pima result in a finished item with much more drape and it doesn’t spring back like wool does.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

I loved the stitch definition so I wanted to see how it looked with a few yarn overs to open up the fabric. You can see it makes for an interesting texture but the eyelets in the fabric aren’t very pronounced. Not exactly what I was going for but it could be a great way to lighten up the fabric even more without making it very lacy.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

Looking at the stitch definition I’d be careful with any colorwork. While it will work great for stripes if you do any colorwork the yarn being carried may peek through the stitches. Here’s a great example of how nicely it stripes. I made the Gresham Park top this summer and it made for a wonderfully light, breathable top. You can find more about this pattern HERE

 

Durability

Ultra Pima is machine washable. I could see it being used for babies and for everyday items. I washed it a total of 5 times and threw it in the dryer each time. In between washes I rubbed it together and really roughed it up.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

The  swatch on the left is unwashed.
Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

 

I had a hard time getting it show in the pictures but the main difference I saw between the unwashed swatch and the washed swatch was it looks like it lost a bit of the sheen. Like I said before it also seemed to shrink just a little. It did start to fuzz up but I had to get in extremely close to see it. I personally think it will stand up to the love babies would give it. Also great for everyday wear.

Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review Cascade Ultra Pima Yarn review

 

Pattern Ideas

Ultra Pima would be great for thing such as baby items, light weight sweaters, tops and shawls and warmer weather hats.

I will caution you lovely plus sized ladies. You do want to be careful with cotton. Like I said, it does not spring back like wool and it can get heavy. For some styles this may not be the most flattering on you. Open/lacy stitches will help out a ton with this. Or even using a stretchy stitch like a knitted ribbing.

Here are some patterns to try with Ultra Pima

Gresham Park Top by Katy Petersen

Garden Gal Top by Katy Petersen

[Plus Size] Pacific Pullover by Danyel Pink

Surry Hills by Maria Magnusson (Olsson)

Vintage Violet by Kathy Lashley

Marie’s Serenity by Kati Donahue

Conclusion

If you’re looking for a high quality luxuriously soft cotton yarn Ultra Pima is the answer! It’s perfect for light weight, breathable garments and accessories. It’s easy to care for and will stand up to some abuse. You can also see more projects made with Ultra Pima by viewing it on Ravelry HERE.


I hope you enjoyed this yarn review! You can browse more reviews HERE. Do you know of a yarn you’d like to see reviewed? Feel free to contact me HERE let me know what yarn you’d like to see and I’ll try to get my hands on some 🙂

Katy

 

 

3 thoughts on “Cascade Ultra Pima: A Detailed Yarn Review | KT and the Squid”

    1. Hi Casia!
      I haven’t had any problems. I use an Amish yarn swift. Sometimes I roll by hand and sometimes I use a ball winder but the swift really helps!
      If you don;t have one you can use the back of two chairs to hold the hank.

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