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24 Acrylic Yarn Knitting Patterns

You might be surprised to learn just how many uses for acrylic yarn there are.

Updated May 13, 2020
Acrylic Yarn Knitting Patterns

It's almost inevitable that knitters who have been stitching for quite some time will develop strong feelings about acrylic yarn. It's the kind of fiber you either love for its affordability and availability or hate for its cheapness and lack of breathability. Certainly the difference between wool and acrylic yarn is great, but that doesn't mean that it doesn't have its place in the knitting world. Like any other fiber, there are pattern types that just make the most sense to be knit with acrylic yarn.

Acrylic yarn is one of many synthetic types of yarn which, if I can spare you the scientific talk, is essentially plastic. Not relying on any sort of animal or plant, acrylic yarn is ridiculously cheap to produce and stock on shelves. For this reason, even the biggest fiber snob probably used acrylic yarn or some acrylic blend in her very first project. It's also washable and mostly hypoallergenic, which makes it a very safe option. There are, however, downfalls to this yarn: it lacks the insulation and breathability of natural fibers, which can make it feel stuffy and uncomfortable when used on wearables like sweaters or scarves, it melts when it comes in contact with high heat (making it unsuitable for potholders), and it lacks absorbency, ruining its potential for dishcloths. There's also plenty of discussion on the negative environmental impact of acrylic yarn. What can I knit with acrylic yarn, then you might ask? Well, especially if you're a beginner, you can knit whatever you want with acrylic yarn. Why should a beginner spend big money on natural fibers when he or she can hardly cast on?

That said, there are plenty of uses for acrylic yarn that even the seasoned knitter can get behind. These acrylic yarn knitting patterns will help you bust your synthetic stash.

Toys and Amigurumi

The key when figuring out what to knit with acrylic yarn is to think outside the wearable box. While acrylic yarn isn't suitable for everything that you'd have around the house, toys and amigurumi are an excellent choice for a number of reasons. Stiff acrylic yarn can help give complicated amigurumi a little more structure, and soft acrylic can make a toy for a young child soft and huggable. You can even knit your pets toys with acrylic yarn—just keep a close eye on things to make sure the toy doesn't begin to unravel (Fido or Fluffy doesn't need to be swallowing long lengths of yarn).

Home Decor

When something is hanging on your wall or sitting on your tabletop, it really doesn't matter what kind of yarn it's made of. Bear in mind that acrylic yarn isn't suitable for home decor that has other uses—dishcloths, hotpads, potholders, and coasters are all better suited for cotton yarn, but there's no sense in wasting your precious cotton yarn on, say, a throw pillow or a basket.

Blankets

While blankets can certainly be nice and luxurious when knit with superwash wool, alpaca, or even cotton yarn, the truth of the matter is that blankets use a ton of yarn, and that makes using natural fibers on them extremely expensive and, honestly, a bit of a waste a lot of the time. Alternatively, acrylic yarn is cheap, readily available, and washable, and if you're snuggling up in your blanket in front of the television every night, it's going to eventually need a run through the washing machine.

Baby sweaters

Though I wouldn't necessarily recommend that you knit an adult sweater out of acrylic yarn, unless it's your first sweater (after all of that time and energy knitting, you may as well use yarn that keeps you warm without making you sweat), I change my tune when it comes to baby sweaters. Baby knits, in general, are really best to be knit with either acrylic yarn or cotton yarn. Firstly, if you don't know this baby, you don't know if she's allergic to wool and it's really better to be safe than sorry. Secondly, babies are messy! Mom will appreciate being able to chuck the nice cardigan that little Susie just spit up on in the laundry bin rather than having to delicately hand-wash it.

Up Next:

How to Pick Yarn for Knitting

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