Acrylic Baby Blanket - Almost Done but Hate It Now

I started this easy baby blanket last month for knitting while watching TV. The original pattern called for a cotton yarn, another version called for merino wool…I was in the yarn shop and was shocked to find out that it might cost me $200 to knit it in merino wool. They didn’t have any cotton yarn with a wide variety of colors, either. So…I cheaped-out and got the Bernat super value 100% acrylic. BIGGEST MISTAKE EVER…I regretted it pretty much the moment I cast it on…The yarn was scratchy on the needles and just feels like cheap plastic on my fingers. Now I am close to finishing the blanket but I am hating the product…and I don’t think baby will love it either. : (((

I don’t think I am a yarn-snob, but no acrylic knitting for me for at a while! What do people knit blankets/afghans with anyway? Would it actually make sense to splurge on merino wool for such a large project like this? Maybe one day if I get paid knitting…but definitely not with the budget I have right now…

I’ve not used the Bernat Super Value yarn but I have used lots of other inexpensive acrylic yarns. Even the scratchier ones will soften with washing and drying, fabric softener helps a lot. Steaming will also soften acrylics. If you choose to steam it, test on a swatch first. It’s easy to use too much steam and kill the acrylic.

Thanks for the tips! I thought I was the only one on the forum on Christmas day…I swear this yarn must be cursed…my needles just broke now! :(( I just want to cast off and cry.

There are some very nice acrylics and especially acrylic blends. Plymouth Encore is nice to work with and comes in a great range of colors. Plymouth’s Pacific is even nicer to work with, also in many colors.
It’s very disappointing to get so far in a pattern and not like the finished project but GG’s right, washing may help out. See what the ball band recommends and try that.
One of the rules that I learned early on was to buy the best yarn you can afford. You’re going to put in hundreds of dollars worth of your time on a project.

I want to try Plymouth Encore. Even though I’m a new knitter I still want whatever I knit to hold up. I’m thinking of trying a baby blanket or afghan next and I don’t want to spend all of that time and energy just to have it mangled up in the end. Is the Pacific yarn you’re referring to Cascade Pacific? I couldn’t find a Plymouth Pacific.

Also, the wool content doesn’t make it scratchy, does it? I don’t care for wool for that reason and all of the high quality yarns I see are mostly made with wool.

I’ve not encountered scratchy wool…yet. I’ve used Lion Brand WoolEase and it’s not scratchy, other blends too but can’t remember right now which ones. Hair conditioner purportedly helps with the scratch factor. Merino wool is soft. People I knit for couldn’t wear wool but they wear the wool I knit with. Even Lion Brand SockEase which isn’t the most expensive sock yarn out there (really, it’s on the cheap side) works well for me.

I have some sock yarn that is nasty to work with but after it’s washed it’s nice and soft. Pace is the brand, I think it’s discontinued.

Yes, Cascade Pacific, you’re right! It’s really lovely yarn. I used it when my yarn store recommended it and I was very happy with the baby sweater that I knit.

pace, by universal yarn… it’s still on the their website (universalyarn.com), and WEBS (yarn.com) has some too, but yes, discontinued and limited colors. i got some off listia and ebay and was surprised at its roughness. glad to hear it softens up in the wash.

I’m wearing gray sox with red toes and heels made from Pace right now. I have more of the same yarn to make red with gray heels and toes and may wash it before I use it. This stuff was just awful to work with. If it’s cheap enough I would consider buying more.

I just pulled out some Lion Brand Pound of Love to use for a hat. It will be fuzzy but it will be soft.

i’ve been washing some yarns before using, but being really careful about it. don’t have the cojones to throw yarn in my front-load washer, whether it’s bagged or nylon’d or whatnot. instead i’m doing sink washing/rinsing/washing/rinsing/rinsing/rinsing, and then the towel burrito, and then air drying near a vent. only then am i winding it into a ball. it’s softened up some vintage and ugly feeling stuff pretty nicely. now i just need to get those yarns into their assigned projects, but there are still UFOs to F.

Not all acrylics are created equal. I find blends are what I like best. One of my favorite go to yarns for babies and chemo caps is Berroco Comfort. It’s nylon and acrylic and so soft and looks nice knitted up. I also use Plymouth Encore and like it for charity caps, but it’s not as soft as comfort. I’m not really a yarn snob, but I really do find you get what you pay for. IMO yarns like this don’t soften enough for my taste, but it does help.

If you really don’t like it you can repurpose the yarn or donate the FO.

I can’t wear Encore and do find it scratchy, but I’m very sensitive to wools. Try one skein before you buy a bunch is my suggestion.

I definitely agree and that’s why I’ll never go [this] cheap again. Just got myself some berroco vintage which is a wool/acrylic blend. Pretty excited to try it!

I’ve used Berroco Vintage and liked it. I’m sure you’ll like it much better. What pattern are you making?

I knit with acrylics pretty much 100% of the time. Mostly because my hubby is allergic to animal fur. Some acrylics are scratchy and some are soft. You’ll have to try them out for yourself!!

knitcindy

I have knitted acrylic for kids many times. I do it because I want them to be used, loved and worn out eventually from all the use. Acrylics can be dragged in the dirt and washed, they can spit up on and food dropped on and still go in the washer and dryer, for the busy mom. I know I wouldnt want to be handwashing wool and blocking blankets or worried about staining and such with high priced yarns.
Also sadly in this day and age I honestly am tired of mailing off boxes for baby showers to people back home who never ever say thank you or even acknowledge the box arrived. I send everything with a tag for confirmation from the post office, then I KNOW they did get it. One family members new gal was having a baby, sent 2 blankets and 6 outfits, booties, socks, bibs, hats etc filled the whole damn box up because I was called by the mother reminding me that I better send something and they were so poor they didnt have anything etc, I mailed it and it was signed for and nothing. 3 years later nothing, not one thank you, they had a second child within the year of the first one, guess who didnt get a present from me? The Mother also hasn’t called me since demanding presents for her first grandchild and she told someone who told someone that the blankets were beautiful, but no one has told me personally yet to this day.

I don’t knit for the thanks, but it’s just plain rude not to acknowledge a gift, ESPECIALLY a hand knit one! Don’t think I’d bother anymore.

As for knitting with acrylic…I believe the problem was a not nice acrylic not the fiber itself. There are many nice soft yarns of many fiber types including wool that are washable. It’s much more enjoyable to knit with nice yarn.

I’m making socks! Hehe this is my first sock and I’m having so much fun already!

Way to go! :thumbsup: That’s a good looking sock you have there! I really like the colors mixed the way you did it.

Love the sock. Your enthusiasm is inspiring!