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'nice' yarn vs. tough wearing acrylic for toddlers ?
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Jan 8, 2012 11:02:40   #
pumpkinlvr
 
Having spent the weekend with my beautiful nephews (2.5 yrs & 9 months) I had the chance to observe a lot of natural 'mess' at mealtime as they learn about spoons etc. :D

I was wondering if anyone has ever chosen to use a rough and tough cheaper acrylic yarn (such as Red Heart, which really doesn't feel good to me but seems indestructible) for toddler/baby items so that they could be truly used on a daily basis and be extra useful to a busy country mom, who has enough to worry about besides stains. I'm not talking hats directly used on sensitive heads or hands, naturally, but sweaters etc, assuming an extra layer of undershirt protecting skin.

Probably a handknitter wouldn't choose cheap because of the loving time investment involved, but we mk'ers can knock out kids sweaters in a day or two using our machines so that's not a factor :)

Has anyone else had these same thoughts, and what did you decide?
 
Jan 8, 2012 11:23:26   #
Mommiedearest
 
Personaly due to the fact they will either destroy what you made or out grow it, go to

http://www.joann.com

and put yarn in your search and all the yarn they have will come up and get the one that is the most reasonable for the one pound yarns. There are two that know of but since I have the yarn I need, {thanks to a client,my dearest son and to my beautiful grand daughters} I haven't looked for a while. When i first started to look all they had was white and the last time I saw they were making it in color. They aren't going to ask the price and these yarns {have use them} will be good and not have a lot of knots in it.
Jan 8, 2012 16:33:48   #
Linda6885 (a regular here)
 
Yes, kids need wash and dry, but there are lots of 'soft ' acrylic yarns. Bernet carries some nice yarn, and also lionbrand. I esspecially like wool-ease which comes in lots of colors and two weights, worsted and sport. This is a blend of soft wool and acrylics. Machine was and dryable. Then a blend of wool and cotton wears extremely well. I like redheart for a wear like iron afghan but not for clothing, there are so many other choices.




ellsbells99 wrote:
Having spent the weekend with my beautiful nephews (2.5 yrs & 9 months) I had the chance to observe a lot of natural 'mess' at mealtime as they learn about spoons etc. :D

I was wondering if anyone has ever chosen to use a rough and tough cheaper acrylic yarn (such as Red Heart, which really doesn't feel good to me but seems indestructible) for toddler/baby items so that they could be truly used on a daily basis and be extra useful to a busy country mom, who has enough to worry about besides stains. I'm not talking hats directly used on sensitive heads or hands, naturally, but sweaters etc, assuming an extra layer of undershirt protecting skin.

Probably a handknitter wouldn't choose cheap because of the loving time investment involved, but we mk'ers can knock out kids sweaters in a day or two using our machines so that's not a factor :)

Has anyone else had these same thoughts, and what did you decide?
Having spent the weekend with my beautiful nephews... (show quote)
Jan 9, 2012 02:56:09   #
NJgardengal
 
For my kids, nieces, gifts, I almost always used the easy washables that were around 40 years ago. I always used my cheek as a test to buy only those that would be comfortable and the items were worn and worn and loved.

My BIG lesson: mom and gram made gorgeous aran cable sweaters in natural wool for self and sisters (later worn by my kids; currently worn by grands)BUT we never got to wear them as much as we would have liked as they needed hand washing and lay flat to dry.

SO, unless I know that the parents are fans of hand washing and and sufficient space somewhere to lay items flat to dry, I use washables. Of course, today we have very nice washable wools, and cotton yarns are available in thicknesses other than doily and bedspread..., so there are many more options.
Jan 9, 2012 06:31:56   #
JoyceinNC (a regular here)
 
I'm really tired of all the negative comments about Red Heart Super Saver. Perhaps you've all see the recent posts on this subject. I've stated before that I do charity knitting. Let me tell you, moms in shelters can't be bothered with a fussy yarn needing hand washing and laying flat to dry for a day or two. And that's not only wool, but cottons as well. I see moms every week in pretty sad circumstances, and an attractive, easy care sweater or hat is just the right thing. I've been using Red Heart yarns for a very long time, probably close to 40 years, and don't intend to stop because of yarn snobs. If you have sensitive skin, I suppose this yarn could feel rough, but have you tried some of the expensive wirey wools out there? How about mohair?? Super Saver comes in a great range of colors, and by the way, different pigments/dyes will cause some yarn to seem thinner than others. Once the item is finished, machine wash and dry, don't forget the fabric softener. Neck ribbing can be carefully steamed if it wants to fold to the outside. The yarn softens trememdously. The infant and toddler sweaters and hats I make and donate are snapped up as soon as I take them in. The smiles on moms and childrens faces are priceless, and I know they have a well made item that will last as long as the child wants to wear it.
Jan 9, 2012 07:51:50   #
knit grandma
 
I found Trenzado yarns (on cones) the best for wear and easy care.
 
Jan 9, 2012 08:25:53   #
GrammaAnn
 
JoyceinNC wrote:
I'm really tired of all the negative comments about Red Heart Super Saver. Perhaps you've all see the recent posts on this subject. I've stated before that I do charity knitting. Let me tell you, moms in shelters can't be bothered with a fussy yarn needing hand washing and laying flat to dry for a day or two. And that's not only wool, but cottons as well. I see moms every week in pretty sad circumstances, and an attractive, easy care sweater or hat is just the right thing. I've been using Red Heart yarns for a very long time, probably close to 40 years, and don't intend to stop because of yarn snobs. If you have sensitive skin, I suppose this yarn could feel rough, but have you tried some of the expensive wirey wools out there? How about mohair?? Super Saver comes in a great range of colors, and by the way, different pigments/dyes will cause some yarn to seem thinner than others. Once the item is finished, machine wash and dry, don't forget the fabric softener. Neck ribbing can be carefully steamed if it wants to fold to the outside. The yarn softens trememdously. The infant and toddler sweaters and hats I make and donate are snapped up as soon as I take them in. The smiles on moms and childrens faces are priceless, and I know they have a well made item that will last as long as the child wants to wear it.
I'm really tired of all the negative comments abou... (show quote)


Where is the "like" button?? :thumbup: Thank you for your wonderful gifts to them!
Jan 9, 2012 08:37:26   #
Jeannie D
 
I also love trenzado, but the mill is no longer producing this yarn.

Trenzi is a good alternative.

That being said I love the red heart also. Kids grow to fast so who cares. Also the dyes and finish of the yarns make them feel rough to the touch off the store shelf.
I suggest you make it and launder it. Be aware that dyer sheets can kill the body of the yarn. Give the lady a break and just make some colorful sweaters that can be thrown in the washer. I live with a two year old and you know he doesn't seem to care when he is rolling in the grass.
Jeannie
Jan 9, 2012 09:29:55   #
Linda6885 (a regular here)
 
I think you are taking this way to personal. I don't think I read any comment that said Redheart was a terrible yarn. Pointing out the pros and cons is useful. Even so called expensive yarns have things that may not be so great. You can not deny that natural fibers are more comfortable against the skin. All acrylics are made from petroleum, not a 'pro' in my book. But there is a place for acrylics. As you said for charity knitting you want something easy care and wears well. I have always liked the redheart super savers for afghans. In my house afghans get rough use. As there are 100's of natural fibers to choose from there are also 100's of acrylic yarns to choose from that are just as economical as redheart, and are softer from the get go. Redheart happens to have almost monopolized the market in stores like Walmart, and craft stores, so it becomes easy access too, but that doesn't mean it is the best out there for your money, and it doesn't mean it is a 'bad' yarn either. I live where LYS's are 15 or more miles away. Most yarns there are way too expensive for me. But the deals on the web and the access to such a variety makes it easy to get nearly any fiber at the price you want. Isn't that terriffic?!









GrammaAnn wrote:
JoyceinNC wrote:
I'm really tired of all the negative comments about Red Heart Super Saver. Perhaps you've all see the recent posts on this subject. I've stated before that I do charity knitting. Let me tell you, moms in shelters can't be bothered with a fussy yarn needing hand washing and laying flat to dry for a day or two. And that's not only wool, but cottons as well. I see moms every week in pretty sad circumstances, and an attractive, easy care sweater or hat is just the right thing. I've been using Red Heart yarns for a very long time, probably close to 40 years, and don't intend to stop because of yarn snobs. If you have sensitive skin, I suppose this yarn could feel rough, but have you tried some of the expensive wirey wools out there? How about mohair?? Super Saver comes in a great range of colors, and by the way, different pigments/dyes will cause some yarn to seem thinner than others. Once the item is finished, machine wash and dry, don't forget the fabric softener. Neck ribbing can be carefully steamed if it wants to fold to the outside. The yarn softens trememdously. The infant and toddler sweaters and hats I make and donate are snapped up as soon as I take them in. The smiles on moms and childrens faces are priceless, and I know they have a well made item that will last as long as the child wants to wear it.
I'm really tired of all the negative comments abou... (show quote)


Where is the "like" button?? :thumbup: Thank you for your wonderful gifts to them!
quote=JoyceinNC I'm really tired of all the negat... (show quote)
Jan 9, 2012 10:03:59   #
dagmargrubaugh
 
I have a standard and a mid-gauge machine. I love using coned yarn, mostly because you don't have to join a new ball of yarn during your project. They are mostly acylic. Yes, I prefer hand knitting with natural fibers. But most of my MK items go to charity, washability and dryability are a must. So, for wheel chair lap robes, slippers, children's sweaters, etc. Red Heart is okay, it NEVER seems to wear out. The recipient usually has no idea what yarn was used and appreciates the gift just the same,
Dagmar
Jan 9, 2012 10:33:01   #
pumpkinlvr
 
Hi Joyce, yes I have felt wirey woolens ~ someone gave me a stash of expensive Irish tweed a while back ~ but I would not contemplate using that either. You don't have to believe me, but this isn't a snob thing it's a "I am asking experienced Grandmas what they use because I truly don't know what's best" thing. Thanks for the tip re: fabric softener I didn't know it could soften Red Heart.

And now I guess it's time to click the "if you no longer wish to receive notifications" button in the email... :C
 
Jan 9, 2012 12:04:44   #
diamondbelle (a regular here)
 
Once it's washed, Red Heart yarn becomes very soft. I've used it for baby afghans, sweaters, etc. I just wash it with laundry detergent and liquid fabric softener, then dry it on low.
Jan 9, 2012 15:02:09   #
Mommiedearest
 
Joyce in NC :thumbup: Some of us can't afford silk
Jan 9, 2012 15:35:10   #
tpmcgoo2
 
I use red heart yarn for many items and its durability is great and yes it does soften up when washed even without fabric softener as I am allergic to so many scents I don't use it. So I would say use the red heart or any other that you can buy inexpensively and know that they will get lots of use and be easy care!!
Jan 9, 2012 15:58:50   #
mopgenorth
 
JoyceinNC wrote:
I'm really tired of all the negative comments about Red Heart Super Saver. Perhaps you've all see the recent posts on this subject. I've stated before that I do charity knitting. Let me tell you, moms in shelters can't be bothered with a fussy yarn needing hand washing and laying flat to dry for a day or two. And that's not only wool, but cottons as well. I see moms every week in pretty sad circumstances, and an attractive, easy care sweater or hat is just the right thing. I've been using Red Heart yarns for a very long time, probably close to 40 years, and don't intend to stop because of yarn snobs. If you have sensitive skin, I suppose this yarn could feel rough, but have you tried some of the expensive wirey wools out there? How about mohair?? Super Saver comes in a great range of colors, and by the way, different pigments/dyes will cause some yarn to seem thinner than others. Once the item is finished, machine wash and dry, don't forget the fabric softener. Neck ribbing can be carefully steamed if it wants to fold to the outside. The yarn softens trememdously. The infant and toddler sweaters and hats I make and donate are snapped up as soon as I take them in. The smiles on moms and childrens faces are priceless, and I know they have a well made item that will last as long as the child wants to wear it.
I'm really tired of all the negative comments abou... (show quote)


Kudos to you! My mother has used predominantly Red Heart for most of her knitting/crocheting life. She just turned 85 and is still whipping out helmet liners, hats and scarves for shelters, afgans for the grandkids, and baby blankets for the great-grandkids - all with Red Heart. What she makes comes from love and I know of no one ever complaining. I grew up wearing her hand made red heart slippers, mittens and hats, but all I remember having warm feet, head, and hands! She taught me to knit using Red Heart and I buy it now to knit for my own grandchildren. I also knit with other yarns and natural fibers - but no more love goes into those projects than with inexpensive yarn. I was taught that love and knitting come from the heart and flows out through the needles, not the yarn - I still believe that.
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