Knitting or crocheting anything with yarn is incredibly satisfying, but when it comes to washing those precious garments, blankets, and other creations, it can create a slight pang of anxiety. Should you wash it warm? Cold? Does it need to be hand washed? Will it affect the quality? Will it run, stretch, or alter the fit? Should I even wash it at all…?
These are all valid questions that arise when faced with a handmade item – after all, it doesn’t usually come with a handy label telling you how to care for it. When it comes to yarns, the sheer variety of materials available can also confuse things further – can you treat wool the same as you would cotton? Can you wash man-made yarn such as acrylic?
Acrylics yarns are often far more affordable and accessible than natural fibres, like wool. Acrylic yarns are known for their colour-fast properties,…
Since the 40s and 50s, acrylic fibres have provided an alternative to natural fibres and made cheap and value yarns accessible to everyone who knits, crochets or works with yarn.
While natural fibres, such as wool or alpaca, are still very much sought after and natural fibres undoubtedly produce some beautiful yarns, these qualities and textures are being recreated by man-made fibres and turned into extremely affordable yarns that are now more popular than ever before.
Is acrylic yarn better than natural yarn?
There are advantages and disadvantages to natural and man made materials, but just because low cost or budget yarns are inexpensive, it certainly doesn’t mean they are lacking in any quality.
Natural fibres can sometimes illicit allergic or irritated reactions, while acrylic yarn is generally hypoallergenic (especially good for babies). Acrylic is lovely and warm, as well as being lightweight and washable. It is also extremely colour-fast and…