20 Jun

Family Afghan

This afghan has graced my dad’s couch for what seems like eons. It might have originally come from my grandparents. Or maybe not. Family things get passed down and I forget what came from where as they all seem to blend together both emotionally and aesthetically.

Old Family afghan

Anyway, after visiting my dad recently and seeing this, I have a wild hair to recreate it. Or at least make something similar. After seeing how much yarn an afghan can eat up when I made ripple blankets for my mom and myself though, I want to keep a lid on this one.

I’ve narrowed down some yarn choices, and I wonder if my yarny blog friends have any tips. I could return to teh Plymouth Encore. I’m pretty happy with my current Encore afghan — though it would be interesting to try something without acrylic. Choice number two is probably Lion Brand Wool-Ease. The colors and price are right, especially if I wait for a 50% off the entire order coupon from Jo-Ann’s. It’s still an acrylic blend though. Speaking of Jo-Ann’s, Patton Angora Bamboo looks intriguing. Ravelry says it can be hairs-in-your-nose-itchy though. This Bambool is also interesting. I’ve knit with bamboo and like the softness, but I’m afraid the size of an afghan would pull it out of shape. Back in acrylic blendy-land, Swish from Knit Picks keeps coming up, and it has good colors and a good price. They also have Wool of the Andes Worsted. I’m afraid that it will be too itchy and splitty and felt up on me though.

Anybody got any words of yarn wisdom for me?

9 thoughts on “Family Afghan

  1. I made one similiar, back in the very early 80’s. Mine was called Navajo I think. You worked it from side to side, starting a new yarn with each row. (That produced a fringe on the sides.) It was done in a single crochet, only going into the back of the stitch, leaving the front of the stitch to be double crocheted when you wanted the accent stitch.

    Have fun!

    I’d go with the Lion Brand Wool-Ease. Strong, warm and lasts forever!

  2. Don’t fear the acrylic blends. They help the wool hold its shape through the multiple washings an afghan requires over the years. I’ve never used the Plymouth Encore, but it comes in some lovely colors. I do love the Wool-Ease for its durability and hand. Either one should make a beautiful afghan.

  3. I would agree with Pat. Don’t fear the wool/acrylic blends. They are extremely washable, and get better with every washing. Plymouth encore is my “go to” yarn for baby gifts.

    I would also second the Swish washable wool. It is 100% superwash merino (no acrylic), pretty soft, and doesn’t pill very much (like regular wool).

    Cascade makes a lovely superwash wool but it would be much more pricey for an afghan’s amount. About $9 for a 220 yard ball. Maybe cheaper at WEBS or other online places.

    I’ve made some really nice afghans out of “Cotton Eaze” which is a cotton/acrylic blend. Very washable, has a nice “heavy drapey” feel and it wears like iron. Unfortunately it seems to be discontinued, but if you find some in a clearance room somewhere, go for it!

  4. Now I know where you got the gene to do handwork 24/7! Grandma Lotz used to always have a project and one of them was that afghan. How fun to create another one for the next three (or four?) generations.

  5. oh, hooray for crochet!

    i used only pure wool in my blankets: mainly Knit Picks WotA, Valley Yarns Northampton, Cascade 220 and other random brands chosen to expand the color palette. i don’t find WotA to be splitty, but some might find it itchy. the other two brands are neither splitty nor itchy. as for felting, of course, you just need to be careful with handwashing. now pilling is another story…

    have you considered using superwash wool?

    best of luck!

  6. check out smileysyarns.com. I’ve bought yarn in bulk from them before and you really can’t beat their prices if you can get the quantity and colors you need. The Filatura Lanarota brand has a really nice quality to it; but there are lots to choose from. Good luck and can’t wait to see it!!!

  7. I have used all three and I would nix the Swish. I just gave away a sweater I knit w/ Swish because it was too scratchy. It even itched through a turtleneck! It drove me crazy and went to a less sensitive friend. I also find the knitpicks yarns underspun and prone to pill because of that.

    Of the two blends, I prefer Plymouth Encore over LB Wool-ease for softness. I think that Plymouth sources softer wool for their blend than LB. Have you tried Berroco Comfort? It looks intriguing.

Comments are closed.