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Tips for Working with Bernat Velvet Yarn

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Have you had a chance to run the new Bernat Velvet yarn through your fingers yet? If you’ve seen it in the store, or if you’ve brought some home already, you know how delicious it feels next to the skin. It is soft and luxurious and it just glides through your fingers. After working up four of my new Velvet Cardis, I think it’s safe to say that I have fallen in love with this yarn. That being said, there are a few things I’ve noticed while working with it that can be aggravating given it’s slippery texture. I decided to compile this list of tips for working with Bernat Velvet (or any velvet) yarn that helped me.

Tips for working with Bernat Velvet Yarn

Tips for Working with Bernat Velvet Yarn

While designing the Velvet Cardi, I noticed that tension played a huge factor in how well my piece turned out. Because velvet yarn is so slippery, it is very common for the stitches to “worm” their way out of alignment. These are simply yarn loops that pull away from the fabric creating little (or big) loops which looks like worms and can throw off your entire project – or worse, make you want to throw it in the trash. We will also discuss how hook size plays an important roll in the outcome of said project and other tips to start you out on the right foot with velvet. Grab your hook and let’s check it out!

tips for working with Velvet yarn

Keep tension tight

While this yarn is a dream to the touch, it is slippery to work with, which can cause the yarn to pull away from the other stitches, causing a “worming” effect. This happens when the tension is too loose allowing the stitches to settle and relax in a way that creates unseemly (and super aggravating) loops. To combat this, you’ll want to keep your tension tight while working with velvet yarn. Consciously pull your loops a bit tighter than normal.

Bernat Velvet hook size

Consider going down (at least one) hook size

After realizing how much of a role tension plays on how well the finished product turns out, I ended up going down TWO hook sizes from the recommended hook size (from 6.5mm to a 5.5mm) in order to get a fabric/weave I was happy with. The smaller hook makes the stitches smaller, and I found that working smaller stitches, in addition to this, further helped to keep the yarn from worming. Consider using smaller stitches when working with this yarn.

For example, I used double crochet to make my first gauge swatch and single crochet for my second swatch before switching to a happy medium, the Half Double Crochet paired with a smaller hook. I loved the fabric it created so much I ended up using it in my new Velvet Cardi pattern.

Leave longer velvet yarn tails to weave in

As I worked with this yarn (through four cardigans now) I noticed that the yarn ends like to wiggle their way out with wear and that the yarn ends shed. For this reason, leave your yarn tails about twice as long as you normally would. This allows you to SUPER weave in your ends (back and forth through several rows and going in several directions) so that if the pesky little yarn end DOES pop free, you can simply snip it without fear that the entire piece will work itself loose and unravel.

Check your work frequently

Periodically stop to review your work. When you stop to take a drink, get up to use the bathroom, stop to count a row etc, take a quick look over your recent work. This way if, in the last few rows, you see a loop that is noticeably looser than the rest, you can frog (rip the stitches out) back to correct this tension issue – and the almost certain “worming” that will take place as a result. It is much easier (and less painful) to fix a mistake one or two rows back rather than frogging all the way back to the beginning of your project. I had a few mini-frog sessions myself while using this velvet yarn and going back to fix it was worth it in the end. Take it from me and check your work periodically. The more often you check the less frogging you’ll have to do.

how to crochet with velvet yarn

Pay attention to your loops

Pay close attention when inserting your hook into the stitches. Because the velvet stitches (and certainly the individual loops, back loop and front loop) are harder to see than stitches worked with regular yarn, it can be easy to insert your hook into only one of the loops instead of both of the loops along the top of the stitch. If you pick up just one of the loops, this can create small holes in the fabric that are noticeable both immediately after crocheting them and after you’ve finished your entire project. If it feels like you didn’t hook enough of the stitch, you may not have gotten through both loops.

I recommend trying this intentionally so you can see – and feel – the difference.

Caring for velvet yarn

This yarn is recommended as hand wash only. While not my favorite thing in the world, it is better than losing your hard work! Hand wash and lay flat to dry. You might consider a sweater dryer like this one from WeCrochet. The less you jostle the stitches (especially in the washing machine), the less chances of worming.

In short, you’ll want to keep tension tight, use smaller stitches, and leave longer tails to weave in. I just love how this yarn feels against my skin, so I say its worth it!

Have you tried velvet yarn? I’m curious to know what you think, and I love to hear any tips or tricks that worked for you. Leave a comment if you care to share!

Velvet yarn tips & tricks

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68 Comments

  1. This is my first time working with the velvet yarn. It feels so amazing but yes it has some negative points. The worming problem is why I went searching online to see if anyone had answers to this problem. I love the tips given in this article and as a beginner I felt excited that I had already figured out some of the tips on my own. I like the idea of burning the tips. I have just tried an idea I have for the worming. So when starting a color change, I worked the tails separately into the project with a darning needle. I went one way a few stitches then back the other was a few stitches but made them both stop at the place. Then I tied the two tails together tightly; cut the tails close to the knot; then VERY carefully flash burned the ends together. So far so good. We’ll see after it gets washed how well it really holds together. Thank you to everyone for all of your comments and ideas.
  2. I just undone a blanket for the 4th time trying to use the velvet yarn. It was supposed to be for my first granddaughter who is due any day now. I'm a beginner knitter and crocheter, this definitely was not the yarn to pick for the blanket. I love the soft silky feel of it but it was just to difficult for my skill level. However I do feel better after reading these comments to know I wasn't the only one struggling with this yarn. So off to begin a new blankie hopefully in time for the delivery.
  3. Used this yarn for a border on my daughter's afghan. Against all I have read, I used an 8mm hook and crocheted a multi row shell and bobble border. I love it. I have not washed it yet though. Her blanket is a C2C with 6 weight yarn. I wanted to do a pom pom for the last row but and not having great luck so far with that idea. I'm am still a beginner and still have many basic stitch patterns to learn. Maybe it is the fact that I don't expect perfection from my work so I most likely overlook things that would drive more experienced crocheters crazy.
  4. This is absolutely the WORST yarn I have ever used. I bought it to make a soft baby blanket for a baby shower. I wanted to use TWO strands and larger needles. BIG mistake. While the rows looked good as I knitted, when I lay the project down to look at it, I had loops, knots, worms, you name it. Ripped it out, started over with smaller needles. Same thing! I will unravel it and do whatever with the yarn. Probably happily dump it. So, not one to give up, I decided I would crochet a blanket with smaller hook than the pattern and yarn called for, and the same thing. The tension can not be depended on. Project looks like something that a beginner made, and I would NEVER EVER give this as a gift to anyone. This needs to be discontinued. Sorry Bernat--it's the first complaint I've ever had. It sure does something to my self confidence.
    1. The skein I used shed all over!!! I couldn’t even imagine wearing this as a cardigan. I was left with just thread in some spots! Did a get a faulty skein?
  5. This yarn is horrible to work with even with a smaller needle size and tight stitches. I'm casting off a knit temperature blanket project started Jan 1st and will not be continuing. Worms everywhere! I thought I could pull the worms through to the ws, rs looks great, but it won't for long. Will likely donate the rest of this yarn. I really don't know how anyone can work with this stuff.
  6. Thanks for all of the comments. I too bought the Baby Crushed Velvet and made a Pull OverVest, and a knitted hat. The hat came out very loose, but hopeful it will be large enough to fit over my hair rollers when I need to go out. But now I'm a little worried about the worming. I guess I'll be very careful in how I wash it.
  7. I too have experienced the dreaded worminess of this yarn. I tried over and over and kept on frogging! I finally figured out just what other folks have learned here - use very tight stitches, use smaller size hook than what is suggested, and used the hdc stitch! I wish this site allowed me to add a picture because the afghan for my daughter turned out beautifully! I swore off the Bernat Velvet! BUT my grandson wants his own blanket “just like Mama’s” so I will probably give it another go. My hand still cramps, especially the muscles around my thumb. What we are really pleased to do for our little “grands”!!
  8. I just knitted the Yarnspirations “Party Heart-y Mosaic Knit Baby Blanket” The mosaic technique for color work was perfect for this yarn. Any extra long loops just seemed to even themselves out. I think
  9. Just finished knitting a beautiful-looking baby afghan for a gift. After gentle washing and drying, it was horrible!! Long loops hanging all over. Not salvageable. I am so disheartened. Returning the supply I haven’t used and never using again.
  10. I crocheted a blanket using this yarn but I noticed some of the weaved in ends are poking out. It seems like the yarn is slippery and thus some of the ends wont stay tucked in. Have you found any tricks for this?
  11. I am about to begin a blanket for my daughter's birthday. I am concerned about joining skeins. What is the best method you have found?
  12. I knitted 2 jumpers they finished in the bin after washing and blocking. I crocheted a scarf and a beanie they were better, but not perfect. "Worms" everywhere. Is a lovely yarn but really difficult for me to work.
  13. To keep the ends of velvet yarn from losing too much of its fibers, you can slightly burn them it will melt the polyester (most common fiber for velvet) and it won’t pull out of the ends as easy! ❤️
    1. Just finished Yarnspirations Velvet Plus basket weave pattern. A fun pattern to make but the yarn is very hard to work with. I noticed worming and it is a mess! The only thing I knew to do was weave in the worms but I fear they will all pop out again. The same with the ends. The blanket is extremely heavy. It is a gorgeous blanket but I would be afraid to wash it because of the worming. I was going to give it as a gift but I’m afraid the loops will all pop out again. I’m an experienced crocheted but this yarn is very stressful to work with. Was going to make another one but this yarn is a mess and not worth it.
  14. Hi- I found large “gaps” were appearing periodically in my knitted blanket....realised it was happening when I needed to stop knitting mid-row and would pull the yard back from the needle tips and insert them into the yard ball...now I cap the needle tips and don’t pull the yard back....seems to keep the integrity of the tension better and no gaps.
  15. I just bought velvet yarn 6 weight and i wanted to add a different color to it but u can see where i joined is there anyway to get rid of the kn ot or hide it better or shoul i just continue in the sme color. Thank you this is the first time working with this type of yarn very different and while i work it up it seems to get heavy i never knew such dreamy yarn could be so heavy.
  16. I made a coccoon for a baby with the baby velvet. It looked great until I washed it per the directions. It looked horrible after the washing. I had started a baby blanket and knew it wouldn't wash well. I'm an advanced knitter and think this yarn is too high maintenance.
    1. I read another post that advised crocheting in the space of the previous row and this worked well for me. I used half double crochet stitches and the smaller hook and still Had occasional worming. If I use this yarn again (not sure I will) I will definitely only Do single crochet stitches, nothing bigger. I washed one of the baby blankets I made in the washing machine set on “hand wash” and it came out fine. I air dried it
  17. I am having so many problems with my velvet crochet scrunchies I have been making. I feel like my product looks great but I guess the pulling is too much for this slippery yarn. I wonder if going down on my hook will help, or do you think that it is just going to happen no matter what due to the constant pulling and jostling?
    1. Love this yarn. I enjoy loom knitting hats, first with one strip makes this too loose. Next used 2 strips for the hat, works great. Always watch the stitches but the work is great. Everyone saw these hats; I need more yarn to make hats. Just to touch this.
        1. I'm a knitter and I'm giving up. I've tried 2 baby blankets. The worms keep growing even tho I'm using so much more tension than I'm comfortable with. My hands are cramping. Believe me I tried because my granddaughter loves to grab it but the loops are just too dangerous around her tiny fingers.
          1. I agree! I also made 2 baby blankets (for twins!). After washing (in mesh laundry bags and on delicate) the 'worms' came out like crazy. I put months of work into these ... wish I could correct these without taking completely apart -don't think that would help anyway. Love the feel of them but will Never use Bernat Baby Velvet again.
          2. I knit (preferred) and crochet and I believe it is impossible to knit with this yarn and have a great finished product. I tried everything and the worming was ridiculous. I only had moderate success by crocheting (single crochet only) and using a 5 mm hook. It is very frustrating and I only stayed with it because my daughter wanted the baby blankets.
  18. I made a baby blanket with it using single crochet stitches and mom loved it. I used it with red heart yarn together to make a blanket for a little boy and he loves it.
  19. Having a problem with the black velvet yarn, it's staining! It's making the brighter velvet I'm using look dirty and it's staining my hand when I use it. Is there a prewash system I could use to clean it before I work more of it?
  20. I just finished 2 beautiful blankets with the Velvet yarn and I did not do my homework. I then washed them and they are now ruined! This taught me a hard lesson research a little I just saw it in the store and never read a thing. Lesson learned. I love the yarn but not for a blanket. I need a cardigan pattern
  21. I'm making an elephant rug for my nursery. Any tips on blocking the Baby Velvet or is it not a good choice for this project?
    1. Hi Letitia! I am sure that the rug will be deliciously soft, but I am not too confident on how well velvet yarn would block as it's so fiddly. I've never tried it so I can't say for sure. Sorry, I'm not much help!
    2. I’ve made a few blankets out of velvet yarn and so long as your tensions tight enough you shouldn’t have to block. I also wouldn’t recommend it as it can ruin your yarn. Hope this helps!
  22. Thanks for the tips using this yarn. Wish I had known this before using the Bernat. Thanks so much. Good stuff to know!
  23. I love this yarn! Thank you for the tips. I have been crocheting Amigurumi bears and dogs with it and I agree that tension and smaller hook/stitch size really help. My granddaughter gave her bear a “bath” in the sink. My daughter dried it in the dryer. The bear is now only slightly wonky (which I attribute more to the stuffing in the dryer) but the stitches stayed intact.
  24. I love this yarn. I’ve only used it to make Loveys for babies, so haven’t really been bothered by worming. But the softness is perfect for those little baby fingers!
  25. Hi! I LOVE the Bernat Velvet Yarn. I’ve made a few baby blankets with it and all of your tips are right on the money. I only use a hdc and I use a smaller hook. But what I don’t do is check as I go. I can’t tell you how many times I had to frog my last blanket. Thank you for sharing!
  26. Thanks for tips. It is really a wonderfully plush, silky product. The product labeled "baby" velvet is more silky and dense than the other one, both by Bernat. A) are great, crushed as well. As if yarn isn't addictive enough, now there's velvet! Be safe.
  27. I purchased this Velvety yard to make a baby blanket for my sixth great grand child, due in September. I have tried knitting with it, took apart four times After reading your tips I am going to make one last attempt to crochet with it, hopefully it will work out ok, if not back to Michaels it goes!!! I have knitted and crochet many many things in my life and never encountered anything so frustrating as this yarn! Wish me luck
    1. Hi, this yarn is hard to work with. I tried to crochet a baby blanket. I’ve started three times now. A lot of my problem was the pattern I wanted to use. Didn’t work, as pattern had two many stitches that had holes. It was a wave ripple pattern. So now I’m using a basic double crochet in the back loop. Rather boring, but the yarn is looking smoother. The stitches are harder to see I think. It is a real soft yarn!!
  28. I love the feel of this yarn, however it is hard to see the stitches. I have practiced various stitches and have found that the waffle pattern works great and also I have done a granny square blanket which turned out really pretty. I am new to crocheting since January.
  29. I have used the velvet for baby booties (knitted) fail. I tried doing a scarf (fail). Now I am a guy and I knit tight and i mess up so I had taken it out a couple times well once velvet is knitted it doesnt come undone unless you want gaps in the velvet. Uhggg I love the feel and look hate using it. Maybe if i was more experianced it would have worked better.
  30. I made a gorgeous blanket out of this yarn washed it in a laundry bag on gentle cycle and cool dryer. The whole blanket looks like a shag rug. Horrible. $60.00 worth of yarn and hours of work down the drain. I used a front and back double crochet with 3 size smaller hook because I realized the problem in advance. Still a disaster. I was wondering if knitting may be a better option? Any suggestions?
    1. Nope, just finished a baby blanket and had a few loops. I thought washing it would help redistribute the tension...like you I was wrong. I have more and bigger loops now. Will try smaller needle and double it. Will start small and see, otherwise.. forget it!
  31. Has anyone tried using a second strand of non velvet yarn mixed with the velvet yarn to make it easier to work with? Considering this tactic for a blanket.
    1. I tried that with a sock weight yarn. No help. Tried again with a worsted weight yarn, still have the problem of slipped loops and worming. I reduced my needle size by 4 sizes!! Still awful. I'm about ready to find the closest trash can. Desperately trying to find out how to save this project. I love the feel of the yarn, don't like working with it, and HATE the results.
  32. I made a throw pillow. My problem is that the ends keep unweaving themselves and stick out of the pillow no matter how many stitches I weave. Any way to prevent this?
    1. Hi Heather. I also am making pillows for my nieces. I’m at the point of sewing them together. It’s too thick for the sewing machine. Do you know which stitch I can use to hold the two pieces together?
    2. I read a comment that said to lightly burn the ends of this yarn .... since it’s 100% polyester it causes the yarn to melt a little bit, this helps to keep the yarn in place after you weave in the ends. I’ve heard about this melting trick a few times, so I’m going to give it a try.
  33. I have also fallen in love with this yarn! I've made 2 baby blankets and blankets and figured out all the tips here. Wish I had seen this earlier! Incredibly softyarn and no splitting stitches! I do have to say it does have some weight if making a large size blanket. Lighter colors are gorgeous for back loop stitches.
  34. I love the feel and texture but on my upteenth time of trying to get a single chain and 1 row finished, I’m tearing my hair as well as my yarn out. I have snipped off so many frayed tails I could make a small ball. Using the darker colors will definitely hinder the ability to see stitches. Right now using brighter light hoping this helps. Are there Any Tricks to finding those pesky stitches that disappear into the yarn?
    1. I had the same problem the first time I attempted to make a chain the first time I used the velvet yarn. You may be more experienced than myself as I had just started back and relearning - what I ended up doing on my next project, because I looove this yarn so much, I wanted it to be heavier as well - so I used a thicker worsted yarn [on this particular one bernat baby yarn so it was extra soft also] and made a chain and 2 rows then started my 3rd row with the velvet. I also used two strands of the velvet and did a mock basket weave stitch using a smaller hook size and was quite pleased with how it turned out. Thought the tip might help.
  35. Sure wish I'd seen this blog before making the one blanket I've done so far! Thankfully all is not lost, as I still have quite a bit in my stash and will keep your info in mind for the next one. So glad I came across it in time for my makes that will use up the rest of my supply. Thank you for this VERY helpful and informative article!
    1. Haha, not me, finished an entire full size Blanket for my friends birthday. Now goin going to undo entire blanket, reduce needle size considerably and redo. Thank goodness her birthday isn’t until September.
  36. I'm making a throw and alternating 2 front and 2 back post double crochet stitches and then reversing the stitches every few rows. It keeps the rows straight. I also downsized to a 5.5 mm hook. I love the way the yarn feels. At first I tried a Tunisian stitch but didn't like how that came out. I agree, I wouldn't use a triple crochet on this yarn.
  37. The only thing I have used this yarn for is making the hair scrunchies. I always crochet loosely because I found that if I am not careful when taking out stitches I will create 'bald' spots on the yarn strand. How do you avoid this when taking out stitches made with a smaller hook?
  38. What type of yarn join did you do when needing a new skein? I usually use a magic knot, which has always worked well for me, but I’m having trouble with the slipperiness of the yarn. Thanks for posting the tips!
    1. When making magic knot make sure you turn yarn after first tie so the yarn looks like first tie. If you don't you are making a slip knot on second tie so yarn slips. I have run into same issues and took some frustration before figuring out to turn second tie.
  39. I did buy this yarn when I first saw it hoping to make a cardigan before your beautiful pattern came out. I found patchy spots of missing velvet and just a thin string that broke easily. I read a few reviews mentioning this and some reviews that didn't. I attempted to start just to see if I could get around the issue but eventually gave up and returned the yarn. Did you come across any bald spots? How did you fix the problem? I really want to make your beautiful cardigan but I'm afraid of this happening with me not knowing how to get around it. Thanks
  40. I have only made a few items with this yarn - specifically hair scrunchies and fashion scarves. Now that I have seen your finished cardi and your tips, I may step out of the box and go for a larger project. I did notice that the ends do tend to sneak out. And have had a little trouble with breakage when pulling from the skein. Thank you for the tips!
  41. Thank you Ashlea . I bought some of the velvet yarn when it first came out. I had the worming problem and have not been able to get any answers from other designers with recommendations on how to fix this problem. I bought enough to make an afghan and its still in my project bag. I bought your pattern and I'm definitely going to try again. Thank you so much.
  42. I made my first project with this yarn for a gift ( hooded cowl) got 1/2 way thru, took it all out and went to a smaller hook. Pattern called for FPTr, talk about worming. But i finished it. The weight of the completed piece helped with the little squiggly devils. But no more trebles for me. I adjusted the pattern. LOVE THE YARN ( i am a sucker for soft) and cant wait to get the cardigan pattern.