I cannot wear wool and looking for a substitute yarn for Berroco Ultra Alpaca.
Alpaca isn’t wool, are you sure you couldn’t wear it?
I can’t wear wool or alpaca either. I’m just too sensitive and they are too itchy for me.
The way you can change yarns is to look at the gauge. Ultra Alpaca is a worsted weight yarn with 20 stitches over 4 inches.
That are hundreds of yarns in that category. What are you making? What kind of yarn would you like to use? If you have a link to the pattern please post it because it helps us give you good ideas.
Berroco’s Comfort yarn should work perfectly.
The pattern is Berroco Avocet B - free pattern on Berroco site. Since I am a beginner knitter, I am trying to learn all this.
Okay it’s a wool/alpaca blend, not alpaca only. It’s worsted weight, so you could probably use any worsted in acrylic that would get the same gauge.
Okay, here’s the deal: you need to use a yarn that is the same weight, which means thickness. You need to get the same gauge, which is stitches per inch (don’t worry so much about rows per inch, that’s much easier to work around).
The yarn that is called for in the pattern, and the pattern itself, both use 5 sts per inch. The Comfort yarns by Berroco come in several weights/thicknesses, including the general Comfort, which is worsted weight, and Comfort DK, which is DK weight, a little thinner than worsted. The problem is that Comfort is 4.5 sts per inch, and the Comfort DK is 5.5 sts per inch. Which means you can knit with smaller needles in the Comfort and get 5 sts per inch, or use slightly larger needles in the DK and get 5 sts per inch. The very, very, very, very important thing is to do a gauge swatch so that you’re sure you’re really getting 5 sts per inch, no matter what yarn you use. A half stitch off per inch doesn’t sound like much, but will add up (or subtract) several inches around by the time you’re done.
Given the pattern, I would personally use the general Comfort and knit it a little tighter (by using smaller needles).
There are other non-wool yarns out there-- Caron’s Simply Soft (4.5 sts per inch), James Brett’s Marble (5.5 sts per inch) to name 2.
Yarns have numbers which indicate the weight-- “4” is worsted, which is what this pattern needs. But there are slight variations and ranges within those numbers.