Blocking Tips

Does anyone have the best and safest method to block a 50%wool 50%acrylic blanket? This will be my first time blocking and I don’t want it to shrink! :-/

Hmmm. Not sure how well a yarn that is 50% acrylic will block? Because synthetics have such a strong fiber-memory I have never had much luck blocking or shaping it but have never tried it with the blended. Anyhooo I think you should treat the garment as though it is 100% wool since that is where the shrinking would be a concern, and of course avoid heat in your process.:slight_smile:

@crocheterclaudia What exact yarn are you using? Is the wool superwash? Do you still have your swatch? If so, I’d wash and dry the swatch and see what happens. Or make up a swatch and wash it. If the wool is superwash, you can probably wash and dry the blanket in your machines, using the gentle or wool cycle on the washer. Blocking can mean anything from simply machine wash and dry all the way up to hand washing and pinning. Acrylics won’t typically hold a pinned block. If you want your blanket to relax some, use a medium or warmer cycle on the dryer. You can also block acrylics with steam, but that tends to kill the acrylic and give you lots of drape…probably not what you want for your blanke, but it’s great when blocking shawls.

Thank you!

@knitterlady13 I’m using Loops and Threads Cozy Wool for most of the blanket. The instructions say handwash and dry flat. The ends (about 7 rows at each end) are in Lion Brand Wool Ease Thick and Quick which is machine washable and dryable. I think I will make up a swash and steam it?

@crocheterclaudia Ah ha…then yeah…you’d need to care for the blanket in the way recommended for the more delicate yarn. You may still be able to wash on the wool or gentle cycle if you have a top or front loader without an agitator, but be careful. The Loops & Threads cozy may recommend hand washing because it tends to pill more than because of shrinking. I haven’t worked with it, so I’m not sure. If you want to hand wash, you could still put it in the washer to spin the water out if you have the choice of a spin cycle only.

How do you feel about the texture and heaviness of the blanket now? If you like it, then you may not want to steam. Steaming will relax the acrylic fibers permanently and will make your blanket more drapey. The more steam, the more relaxed the fabric will become. A gentle and quick steam all over (hovering the iron or steamer above the fabric…NOT touching it) may give you a bit more drape which is probably what I’d want, but don’t hover the steam over any area for too long or you’ll end up with a thinner, much drapier fabric. I’d recommend testing out your steaming on a swatch (it can be a small swatch) or on just the corner of the blanket if you don’t want to make a swatch just to ensure you’re getting the desired result before steaming the entire piece. I personally like a thinner, drapier blanket, but I know other people want a heavier, thicker fabric.

@kinitterlady13 Gosh, knitterlady, you are so knowledgeable. Everything you say makes perfect sense. I would like the ends to relax a bit. I will send you a picture when I’m completely done. I do have front-loading washer and dryer and the dryer has a steam-only cycle. The blanket is a present for one of my very best friends so I want it to be perfect. I have only been crocheting for a little over a year so I am proud to say the edges are straight! How long have you been crochetting/knitting? I tried knitting but I did not enjoy the class and the way I have to undo my mistakes. I find crocheting more forgiving.:slight_smile:

Oh, forgot to answer your main question. The blanket does feel heavy right now.

@crocheterclaudia I look forward to seeing your finished blanket!

I’ve been knitting since the mid 1990’s and crocheting for maybe 10 years. I’m an experienced knitter, but an intermediate crocheter at best. I can do all of the crochet stitches (thank you, YouTube), but since I don’t crochet nearly as often as I knit, I am slower with crochet and can’t seem to ever get the tension even. I’m a bit the opposite of you. I find fixing errors in knitting easier because I usually don’t have to rip back…just drop down to the error. Crochet is much easier to rip back, but since I’m slow at it I find myself wishing I could just drop down.