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bailey

To soften stiff yarn

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Has anyone heard of rinsing a completed item in vinegar (vinegar and water I assume) to soften the yarn? RH worsted weight comes to mind - I crocheted a hat for charity and wish the hat felt softer.

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I've heard of vinegar being used as a softener after washing with laundry soap, simply because it cuts the suds and really gets them out. RH yarn softens up great just using cheap hair conditioner in the rinse cycle and letting it soak a while before rinsing and spinning.

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If you want to set the colors, you can wash or soak the item in vinegar and water (soak for at least 15 minutes).

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thanks - I'll try the conditioner

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IMO, some of those RH yarns just never soften up no matter what you do. Could be the stitch or the hook size. If you have a tight stitch and a small hook size, the fabric comes out stiff. Good if you're making a purse but not so much for a hat! I've heard of a vinegar/water soak but that's to set the dye, which hasn't been necessary with any RH acrylics I've used.

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when i was growing up in the fifties we would wash

our hair with bar soap, then rinse with vinegar so it

would be soft and shiny.

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I tried using vinegar in with the rinse on a project where the yarn felt stiff and it worked wonders! I was totally surprised. I will say that I didn't just add a cup or pre-measured amount, I just poured some right in the rinse cycle. But, I'd recommend it, it works great!

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I washed whole balls of yarn buy stuffing them in to a pair of tights and then adding fabric softener to the final rinse....hung the whole thing on the line in the sun and it dried well and left the yarn soft...I used to add vinegar to cotton nappies when I washed them ( when my girls were babies) I would think like previous posters that it would work well. :)

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Hello, I am new to Crochetville and dont really know how it all works yet but I have a question about softening a yarn project (hence the reason I joined). I have made a quite a few premie hats and some are just too stiff, so I am planning on doing the vinegar rinse. What I am concerned about is that many times the premies are so fragile and might be prone to allergic reactions to some products. I plan on doing the vinegar rinse and then washing with an non allergenic detergent, does anyone have any suggestions or knowledge as to if this will be alright? Any advice will be appreciated. Thanks :)

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ccfairie - I first heard of the vinegar rinse to soften yarn on a site for preemies.

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Please contact the neonatal unit you will be donating these hats to as the nurses will be able to tell you what they prefer. Most of the places I have donated to prefer cotton only.

I would not recommend using hair conditioner because it has types of oils and perfumes in it.

 

 

Hello.......... I plan on doing the vinegar rinse and then washing with an non allergenic detergent, does anyone have any suggestions or knowledge as to if this will be alright? Any advice will be appreciated. Thanks :)

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ccfairie - I first heard of the vinegar rinse to soften yarn on a site for preemies.

 

Thanks bailey, I am going to try it today and see how it goes, dont want to donate something stiff and scratchy. Hopefully that will do the trick.

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Please contact the neonatal unit you will be donating these hats to as the nurses will be able to tell you what they prefer. Most of the places I have donated to prefer cotton only.

I would not recommend using hair conditioner because it has types of oils and perfumes in it.

 

Last night after entering my question, it did occur to me to ask the unit at the hospital itself, duh, I am a little slow sometimes. My preemie granddaughter had an acrylic hat, but very soft. I didnt think the hair conditioner would be a good idea for this particular project either. Hopefully the vinegar will work and do the trick, I will check with the hospital also though. Thank you.

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Here is the method I'm going to try. Wash the finished item with a load of laundry and add a liquid softener to the final rinse.

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I've never used vinegar on acrylic yarn and you don't need to set the colors for acrylic - cotton yes but not for acrylic.

 

I just toss my stuff in the washer and dryer (with a sheet). Regular acrylic yarn really doesn't need any special treatment. Once you get into the higher end or fancier yarns - a lot of them do.

 

Red Heart is scratchy but a lot of that is the sizing that's put in it to give it body when you work with it. It does come out in the wash. RH isn't the softest yarn out there and I wouldn't use it for tiny little babies.

 

As far as donating to a neo-natal unit - definitely ask the hospital what they would like and can actually use including any special washing instructions.

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I just finished a hat for my daughter made out of RHSS. The pink was very stiff and scratchy. I ran it through the wash then put it in the kitchen sink with a capfull of liquid fabric softener. I left it overnight, rinsed it and put it in the dryer with a dryer sheet. It is so soft now.

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You can also wash it before making something with it. Take the band off the yarn skein loosen it up and place in a lingerie bag. Wash in cold water, fabric softener,dry on low in the dryer and you will get a softer fluffier yarn

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I just joined to get advice on how to soften some yarn I was given, but there are so many neat things on crochetville, I will hang around for awhile!!

 

Anyway, I used this yarn to make a baby blanket. The yarn is gorgeous, but it feels AWFUL! I have tried washing it a few times with fabric softener to no avail! If I try soaking it in conditioner, how much conditioner do you recommend that I use? Also, does the vinegar idea make it smell???

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I use vinegar instead of softener to help counteract our hard water. It does make your laundry room smell a bit vinegary for a short while but your laundry does not smell like vinegar. I don't think it does a lot to soften the fabric, though, just as a hard water softener .

 

Acrylic is just rough stuff, I don't quite agree that laundering does much except make it pill. Conditioner or fabric softerner will just add a coat of oil or wax and make it smell nice. Acrylic is plastic, it wont absorb anything to make it softer as natural fibers might.

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My husband does a lot of manual labor and when I've used vinegar in the rinse cycle, he complained that he smelled like a salad bar when he perspired. Sigh....

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The only thing that laundering really does is wash out the sizing. A lot of times that's what makes it feel really bad. Adding a drying sheet also adds a slight coating to help soften it.

 

Some brands and some colors of different brands are just rougher than others.

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