View Full Version : Sub for yarn? (any alpaca experts?)

04-26-2007, 02:38 PM
I would like to make the "Bridal Stole" (http://www.sussdesigns.com/knittingSite/productDetail.php?prodID=430) in Suss Cousins' "Wedding Knits", but the price of the yarn (http://www.sussdesigns.com/knittingSite/productDetail.php?prodID=44) is a bit steep for me at $12.50 per skein, and I'd need 7 skeins of it (although the yarn they used in the FO looked just beautiful in the picture :inlove: ). The description of the yarn they used (Suss Ultrasoft) says it's "a viscose alpaca blend with vintage inspired colors; knitted up it has a feather like feeling". Would I get that effect with Suri Dream?

I realize that KP's Suri Dream is a bulkier weight yarn, but they recommend it for knitting a feather and fan throw on size 8 needles, so I know it'll have nice stitch definition, as well as that nice soft halo.

I guess what I need is somebody that's worked with alpaca enough to give me some opinions on the yarn sub. I know I'll have to use different sized needles of course if I go with the Suri Dream because it's listed as a super bulky yarn, but beyond that, how do you think Suri Dream would be as a sub for the Suss Ultrasoft? I listed the yarn fiber content for both if it helps to know the difference.

Suri Dream:
74% alpaca, 22% wool, 4% nylon

Suss Ultrasoft:
40% viscose, 30% alpaca, 20% acrylic, 10% nylon

Or, would there be a better yarn sub for the Suss Ultrasoft than the Suri Dream? :shrug:

04-26-2007, 02:54 PM
Just found the gauge for the ultrasoft:
Needle Size: US 7-9 Gauge: 5 stitches and 6 rows per inch

Personally I think Alapaca is a tad itchy. I am fine with it as long as it is not directly on my skin. If I made a stole that touched bare skin, I would use a merino wool.


04-26-2007, 05:43 PM
That is one beautiful stole!

I recently bought some beautiful Berroco Ultrasoft (50% wool/50% alpaca). This is probably midway between the two yarns you mentioned. the Ultrasoft is supposed to be worsted weight...size 7/8 needles. Clerk said it looked thin but would "plump" up. It never got to the plump up stage for me on either #8's or #7's. There were holes in my pattern and I don't knit loosely. The yarn was too expensive to use double-stranded so I switched to Paton's Decor (75% acrylic/25% wool). I will use the Berroco for another scarf but will add a fingering/2-ply yarn to "plump" it up!

When I'm in doubt about a yarn I usually buy just one skein and try it out. In this case I bought the yarn at a shop more than 30 miles away so I bought the four skeins right off the bat.


04-26-2007, 08:42 PM
The Suss Ultrasoft is actually more like a novelty yarn than an alpaca yarn. It has a strand of alpaca paired with a strand of squiggly viscose. Off hand I can't think of anything comparable but then I don't pay much attention to novelty yarns. Trendsetter Dune has a strand of mohair paired with some viscose but it is even more expensive I believe.

The stole itself looks like nothing but a basic feather and fan pattern. If that is true you can probably use anything you want. Personally, if I wanted a light, airy, romantic look I would probably use one of the lace mohairs like Kidsilk Haze, Kid Seta, Douceur et Soie.

I've heard that Suri Dream doesn't hold up well to washing so if you decide to use it be sure to make a swatch and wash it first to see what it looks like. Another alpaca yarn you might consider is Frog Tree. It is a sport weight so may be closer to the right weight.

04-26-2007, 09:24 PM
Personally I think Alapaca is a tad itchy. I am fine with it as long as it is not directly on my skin. If I made a stole that touched bare skin, I would use a merino wool.

See, that's what happened to me. :verysad: The first few times I wore alpaca, I was fine with it, but now, it seems itchy to me, and I'm VERY sad about it. In fact, even when I knit with it, it seems like little fibers fly off and bother me (maybe I developed an allergy to it?). Merino is the only wool I've found thus far that I can wear close to my skin, but I was concerned about the effect of merino wool versus the alpaca because alpaca has that nice soft mohair-look to it, while merino is more of a smooth yarn. I suppose it doesn't matter entirely; I'm making a shawl with this pattern right now out of a cotton/acrylic blend and it looks GORGEOUS! (it turned out much better than I ever would've thought).

Thank you all for your help because everybody had VERY helpful ideas! :hug: