I’m planning on making Jared’s Hemlock Blanket but I was wondering about yarn. I know the pattern calls for a 100% wool for blocking later, but I was wondering how Encore would do. Because of the acrylic in it, I know it won’t block as nicely as 100% wool but will it at least hold a block for awhile? I know throwing it in the washer is a whole new ball game but what if I don’t dry it? Will it hold a better shape? How about lightly steaming the project? Thanks so much!
You can block it and it will maybe hold it till the next wash, but you’d have to do it every time. I’m not sure though. I never block Enccore.
Personally if it’s something for a baby I just toss it in the washer and dryer because they need to be washed so often.
Lace looks so much improved when you can block it well, that is why wool is so nice for that sort of project. I don’t know that the lace will get opened up so that you get the full effect of the nice pattern with a blend. I wouldn’t recommend steam unless you would like the yarn to get limp. I think if you steamed it it would help the lace to look more finished, but you have to balance that against the way it will make the material go limp.
I made a lace scarf with acrylic and steamed it. If you steam the acrylic I understand that it will keep the blocking forever, but it will make it go limp. I wanted my scarf to get drapy and that worked perfectly, but think carefully about what you want to happen, because there are no backsies with steam and acrylic. The yarn actually melts a bit (or a lot if you are not careful). Try a sample swatch with a lace pattern and your yarn and try blocking it just with water and then if you don’t like the look of that try steam and see if you like the result.
I use all acrylic as well as blends and have found that if you put them in the dryer, the steam is enough to relax the sts, or you can use a larger needle instead of blocking. Washing it evens out the sts anyway and that’s all you need to do with it, especially a blanket.