Natural Yarn & Allergies!

I have always wanted to try knitting with more natural fibers, but my husband and some of my children have allergies. Wool doesn’t seem to bother them, so I’m wondering if there is any type of animal fiber that is less allergenic than the others???

Mohair is out of the question! I made my mom a wrap with yarn that had a little bit of mohair in it and I had to keep it in a zip lock bag and only work on it when he wasn’t home. AND it shed all over my clothes while I was knitting.

So…any ideas about an animal fiber that doesn’t shed and is less likely for him to be allergic to???


Does it have to be animal fiber? What about bamboo, soy, or corn based yarns? or cotton?

I’m confused… you said wool doesn’t bother them, but you’re looking for something else? What kind of fiber does cause the allergies?

I’m not allergic, but extremely sensitive to wool so I know what a hassle it is finding yarns that you can wear. I can knit with wool though so I use it for other things.

For myself I knit with various blends of cotton, nylon, premium acrylics most of the time. I use a lot of Plymouth Jeannee and Berroco Comfort.

I have read about people that cant be around wool but Alpaca and Llama arent supposed to cause problems. My MIL is allergic to wool but made her a Alpaca scarf and she loves it as it dont irritate her skin. If I was you I would get like a skien of Alpaca yarn and see if it bothers them and if not you can also get Llama. Some yarn places sell it and then sometimes you have to order it online. Good luck

Mohair is goat hair. I bought Brown Sheep’s Lambs Pride bulky thinking it was all wool. I was disappointed to read the label and find it had a mohair blend. My mittens knit with it aren’t all that warm and they shed over everything. My LYS lady tells me that Merino wool is less itchy. Merino is a type of sheep that has a lot of folds and thus more wool.

Is the allergy to the fiber itself or animal dander that can be on the fiber? If I walk into tent full of fleeces I sneeze, eyes swell and water etc, but I can knit with and wear processed wool b/c the animal dander and hay have been removed. I once knit a cowl with alpaca that was straight from the source and sneezed as if a cat were in my lap the entire time. Had to give the cowl away. Alpaca that is more processed I seem to be fine with. Good luck - I know all too well animal allergies can be a bear to deal with.

And I’m not allergic, but have very sensitive skin. I can knit with any kind of animal fiber, but usually can’t wear it.

If the person is not truly allergic then you may be able to find a smooth animal fiber that may be fine. Even though alpaca is soft to the touch it’s fuzzy and the fuzzy yarns itch me like crazy.

It seems to me that you’re most concerned with having a fiber in your house that your husband and children are allergic to, correct?

So whether you can wear it or not isn’t the issue here. Rather, the issue is whether you can knit with the fiber at home or if you have to be banned from the house to get your projects done, yes?

I would second the bamboo, silk, and soy recommendations. There are some nice cotton blends, too.

My daughter, Lauralee, is allergic to several natural animal fibers, and of course,
you named it…[U]mohair is a major offender[/U]!

She can wear [B]100% wool[/B] just fine…[U]the type that comes from a sheep[/U].

But not alpaca, not yak, not bison, not angora…none of the so-called exotic natural animal fibers.

I knit a NORO [B]Kureyon[/B] cardigan for her last year…it is 100% wool…
and she can wear it for any length of time.

Yarn with angora in it makes her itch even if I’m wearing it!
We were sitting next to each other in a movie, and she had to move down 2 seats! LOL.

Of course, any of the plant-based yarns are fine and dandy for her.