Is wool ok for preemie caps?

Hello all, I want to start on some charity knitting and thought preemie caps would be the way to go. But not knowing much about babies, do I have to use acryilic yarn? Can animal fibers cause problems with a preemie? Thank you.

It’s probably best to use acrylic; there are some very soft yarns and they’re washable. Most people would not want to hand wash them.

I too use acrylic its soft and washes well…My local hospital where I send my preemie hats insist on acrylic yarns.

Yay! Another charity knitter! :cheering:

We use acrylic yarn for our knitting for babies, unless we are making the items for a very cold climate.

Items knit for hospitals must be washable. The hospital staff washes items in hot water, so the yarn should be able to handle that kind of treatment. I would imagine that the rinse cycle would be cold, so wool would felt and could possibly damage their washing machine.

And some babies are allergic to wool, which would just cause another problem for the hospital to deal with.

Also, we must be careful to give items that are free from contaminants. Special care should be taken to insure that items are free of smoky smells or any chemicals which could cause problems for a child. Hospitals will not accept these items, and they will most likely be discarded.

If unusually strong smells due to chemicals used in detergents, fabric softeners and dryer sheets, mold and mildew or smoking products are apparent, most hospitals will discard the item, rather than jeopardize the health of a patient.

[I]I used verbage from the Project Linus website to answer your question.[/I]

I would also like to point out that not all acrylics are created equal, too. IMO Red Heart Super Saver is NOT soft enough. Always feel a couple of them and see how soft they are. These are my favorites.

Caron Simply Soft
Bernat Softee Baby or other Bernat Softee yarns
Vanna’s Choice

I went to Michael’s today and found the soft acrylic yarn (Bernat Softee Baby), too bad all acrylics aren’t this soft.

There are quite a few that are, Jan mentioned some of them. And ever RH yarns soften up after a couple washings; I think there’s a finish they put on them that washes out.

I have also found some other acrylic yarns that are also good, but like Jan says, you have to feel them to be sure they are soft enough.

TLC Amoreis very soft, and so is Red Heart Plush. Those yarns have 20% nylon, but I think it will hold up to a hot wash just fine.

Here are some others that should work:
TLC Sparkle Soft
TLC Baby Amore
Red Heart Soft Yarn
Red Heart Baby Teri
Red Heart Soft Baby
TLC Baby
Lion Baby Soft
Lion Microspun
Lion Pound of Love
Caron Simply Soft Baby
Bernat Satin

In America the hospitals that have premature babies ask for us not to use wool for washing purposes but also for babies that may be alergic to animal hair (like myself). A premature baby is so sensative (I have has 3 premature babies) wools can literally if allergic make them so sick and even get hives it can kill them because of the stress. Premature babies get stressed very easily and it can cause their heart rates to sore. Which can lead to major problems. Other countries use wools but America’s NICU’s do not recommend using wools.
Hope this helps!! Mary

I just read sandy’s post, sorry Sandy for repeating what you wrote for some reason I missed your post. My eyes went south or something lol

No problem at all. It’s good to read someone else reinforcing what I said! :slight_smile:

Hello, Ryan:
I know I am about a week late replying to your question. However, I wanted to mention if you are looking to use natural fibers you might want to try Cotton-Ease from Lionbrand. It’s soft and nice to work with (although, it only comes in eight colors).

I worked NICU’s for years. I’m so glad that people are knitting for them. One thing, though. It seems like most folks want to knit cute little things aimed mainly at the girl babes. Hats and booties for little boys are really appreciated.

Some of the dad’s would roll their eyes at the colors, and we’d wind up making cast sock hats for them. :slight_smile:

Wow, I do miss those days! Nothing was better than wrapping a little one up when it came time for them to go to the regular nursery, or home with the parents.

This is very true. I just took several RH scarves out of the dryer after their first washing/drying. One in particular was my first Irish Hiking Scarf, which I had done in RH because I was just learning the pattern and wasn’t sure I was going to like it - it was an experiment of sorts. Of course the scarf turned out great and I was sad because it was in stiff-ish RH.

Now that it’s been washed and dryed, you’d never know it was RH. It is really nice and soft now, and it’s good to know that because it’s RH, it’s also really washable and sturdy.

Back to the subject of baby hats, though - I just finished the most adorable one in Caron Simply Soft (one of the purples, not the lightest, but not the bright, either). I :heart: this hat so much I want to keep it for myself. The pattern I used is:

Thanks for the report on Red Heart!

I’ve wondered about good natural fibre options for babies- I’m knitting for a baby in a home where synthetics are NOT a good idea.
I’m using a merino superwash, any other good options?
Also, I don’t like knitting with synthetics- my hands get so clammy, I worry about getting the project sweaty. Yuck.

Another good yarn is the Wendy’s Peter Pan yarn! I buy mine from (I believe is the link)
You cannot buy it anywhere else but yarn shops, or at least around where I live.
There are many nice baby yarns out there;)

May I ask, is this hat small enough for a preemie? I ask because I have been making a hat that has 64 cast on sts, and it was BIG on my new grandson (he was 5lbs 14 oz). Thanks.

I wasn’t sure from your post, but if you want to use wool yarn and are looking for charities that accept wool baby items, Afghans for Afghans has a Campaign for Newborns quite often and asks for hats, socks, and baby blankents made from wool or other animal fibers. Of course, the yarn should be as soft as possible. For instance, 100% Superwash Merino wool is soft and washable.

However, as stated in other posts, most of the U.S. charities do not want wool items for newborns.

Are you referring to the “Minds Eye” pattern that tmav113 posted? I agree…I think that one is for a full-term baby.

Here are some preemie patterns: