Caron Simply Soft – A Yarn Review
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Caron Simply Soft was my first yarn purchase, and I think it is where a lot of other U.S. based yarn crafters have started their yarn crafting journeys. I know a lot of people that started with Red Heart Super Saver, as well. I think a lot of this has to do with the fact that both are made in the U.S., which makes them more readily available to us.
Caron Simply Soft, was my first purchase because of its softness. I wanted to make a baby blanket and Red Heart Super Saver was simply too scratchy. This long with availability, and versatility are the main reason why most U.S. based yarn crafters start with Caron Simply Soft.
Caron Simply Soft, is a worsted weight or 4 weight and comes in 43 different solid colors, 8 ombre colors, 3 heather colors, 8 stripe colors, 7 bright colors, 3 tweed colors, and 10 paint or variegated colors. That’s a LOT of colors, the color combos are almost endless.
One drawback of Caron Simply Soft is that the different types of color skeins come in different sizes. Let’s explore this, the solid color skeins are 6oz/170g and 315yd/288m; the ombre color skeins are 4oz/114g and 208yd/190.2m; the heather color skeins are 5oz/141.7g and 250yd/228m; the stripe skeins are 5oz/141g and 235yd/215m; the bright color skeins are 6oz/170g and 315yd/288m; the tweed skeins are 5oz/141g and 250yd/228m; and the paint or variegated skeins are 5oz/141g and 235yd/215m. Overall this drawback isn’t too big of deal, it’s just something you need to keep in mind when mixing the different color options.
All of them are 100% acrylic, except for the tweed. The tweed colors are 97% acrylic and 3% viscose, which is rayon fiber. The washing instructions are the same for the different color options, machine wash cold, dry flat, do not iron, do not dry clean, and do not bleach. I have machine washed and machine dried all of these colors options, except for the tweed, and have only experienced one downside to machine drying. Machine drying your projects created with Caron Simply Soft will cause them to pill a lot more.
I have used this yarn to create a very wide variety of projects, but some my favorite uses for this yarn are winter skirts, sweaters, lacey summer tops, boot cuffs, and amigurumis. Now, I know some of you are thinking that amigurumis, or stuffed toys, should only be made in cotton, but I disagree. My stuffed toys created out of Caron have held just fine and some cotton yarns I find stiff and difficult to work into nice tight stitches.
The clothing garment I have made have come out beautiful, nearly every time, and the colors last. Many of the wearable items I have made have been for my children, and trust me they can use and abuse clothes with the best of them, and to my delight a lot of these items have survived multiple kids, and still look great to hand down to future generations. Making family heirlooms is one of the things I treasure most about yarn crafting.
I have found place where Caron Simply Soft is not my recommendation. One of those types projects would be anything that needs to hold up to heat, hard wear, or water such as pot holders, trivets, bowl/mug cozy, washcloths and scrubbies; basically not a good idea for the kitchen or bathroom.
If your are thinking about using this for a garment there are some types of garments where this may not be a good idea. For instance, one of the popular cardigan styles features an open drapey front. This is probably not the not yarn for this type of garment. This is because with all the weight and hang of the sweater can cause the front, or where ever there is heavy draping, to stretch more and more as you are wearing it or it is hanging, than you are most likely hoping to achieve.
How Soft is it?
Caron Simply Soft is a very soft and silky yarn, and it creates a very soft, silky looking item. It doesn’t seem to have a lot of stretch in it, but if its wet or a heavy item it can stretch a lot more than expected. When you wash your items, or block them, be careful not to stretch them too much while wet, because if it has been stretched while wet and dried that way there is no hope of it returning to it previous shape, from my experience.
This yarn is also one the thinner side of worsted weighted, it is not a thick and fluffy yarn. This is what makes it perfect for those lacy summer tops, or light cardigans to wear with dresses. Hobby Lobby’s soft Secret is very close comparison to Caron Simply Soft, with only a few differences. They are both super soft and silky in texture, but Caron Simply soft usually has more issues with splitting and with yarn defects.
Oh the splitting….
Splitting has to been one of the most frustrating yarn issues out there, normally caused by the yarn not being spun tight enough. For Caron Sipmly Soft users, the biggest complaint is the splitting. This is a bigger problem from me when crochet, and not as much of a problem when knitting. When crocheting with this yarn, I find that changing the way you yarn over or under can change how the frequency of splitting problems.
The splitting problem doesn’t just cause issues when working stitches, it can also affect the overall look of the finished project. It is really easy to snag just a single strand of yarn in stitch in a completed project and cause that stitch to permanently look weird. Once the strand has been pulled way from the rest it can be very difficult, if not impossible, to make that strand go back and the stitch look right.
Caron Simply Soft is also of the easiest brands to get your hands one, especially in the U.S., and it is widely available online through several retailers, Joann’s, Micheals, yarnspirations.com, Annie’s, Amazon, Herrschners, and Walmart, just to name a few.
I’ve now pointed out a few of the down sides to using Caron Simply Soft, good and bad uses, and some of it’s major selling points. I really hope I have been able to answer all your CaronSimply Soft questions, and that you’ll give it a try. It really is a great yarn.
I would love see your Caron Simply Soft creations, read your comments and answer any questions I may have missed.