Are you the not-so-proud owner of scratchy yarn? Sometimes the best or most vivid colors come in the most scratchy yarn, and also the most economical. Not only can this rub your working finger nearly raw (if so, you need a finger cuff, friend!) but it’s just not the same as having soft, pliable and cuddly yarn to work with. I have decided to soften my scratchy yarn before crocheting and it makes all the difference.
This is particularly handy when you score a tote or large garbage bag FULL of decades-old yarn at the thrift store or as a hand-me-down. Never turn down yarn. I made a gorgeous yarn wall out of my gifted yarn.
Don’t get me wrong! I’m not complaining about cheap or free yarn, but scratchy yarn. Which, incidentally, we can fix!
How to Soften Economical or Scratchy Yarn
As with anything, outcomes may vary based the temperature of your water, the cycle of your dryer, the season of the moon and more. I have never had an issue with my yarn becoming even more scratchy, or with the yarn tangling, but I do feel that I need a disclaimer of sorts. Read the label of your yarn before washing to be sure that you’re not setting yourself up for failure and proceed at your own risk.
First, you’ll remove the labels from the yarn, and you’ll need to “rough” the skeins up a little. Just dig your fingers in and fluff the yarn up a bit.
Next, throw them in a lingerie washing bag (or better yet, pantyhose!) and throw them in the wash with like colors (or in your regular wash, I usually wash with towels). The less the yarn is jostled, the less the chance of it tangling. Also, be sure to read the label of your yarn, some colors may bleed while others are designed not to bleed.
When finished, throw them in the dryer on medium heat and voila! You’ve got soft, fluffy yarn to work with.
While this isn’t always going to be necessary, it is particularly nice when you’re working on a baby blanket or something similar that you want to be super, super soft while you’re working with it.
Now your economical yarn doesn’t have to hurt your hands or scratch your skin while you’re working.