OH I'm one of the few I guess who don't find NOro Kureyon scratchy!
I've knitted several scarves and what's really weird, when I began I made a little short scarf out of #95 (my favorite color) Kureyon and I always reach for that little scarf when I go out instead of the luxurious soft ones.
It's just the right length and it's softened with wear ... I haven't even washed it. I think it gets softer as you knit with it and wear it. I LOVE THAT SCARF!
Think I'll even post a picture somewhere! ha
So, give it a chance, it wears like crazy too, I mean sturdy, I've never seen any hay or anything in it, would the Japanese even do that!?