Monday, December 23, 2019

Heat Wave yarn

Heat Wave

So I heard about this new yarn called Red Heart Heat Wave. It’s supposed to heat up to 12 degrees when exposed to UV light. If it works as indicated what a great help to those who work outdoors or the homeless who are exposed to the elements on a daily basis.

Here’s a picture of the label front and back. You can see it says this is a “heat generating yarn” which is “sunlight activated – even on cloudy days”. It has the 12 degree Fahrenheit  (6.6c) notation. It is made in the USA of imported fibers. It is a medium weight (#4) yarn and the recommended hook size is 5.5mm which is an I hook. I always find it interesting that the knitting needle size on most yarns is slightly smaller. In this case, it is 5mm. It allows machine wash and dry and is 100% acrylic. The part that didn’t come out in the photo is Coats and Clark address and distribution info.

The arrow points to the CAUTION. “Do not microwave or expose to high frequencies”. I’ve never used a yarn with a caution. How interesting! 🙂

Here is the inside of the label where it explains how the process works. There is a typo in it. It should say “Heat Wave uses a patented fiber that ABSORBS energy from the sun to turn it into warmth, even on cloudy days. The special fibers are spun into the yarn from the beginning so they will never wash out. Heat Wave will keep you up to 12F/6.6C warmer when you are outside …”

I have not seen the yarn available anywhere close to me so I ordered some from Joann’s to try it. You can also get it at the Yarnspirations website  but Joann’s had it on sale at the time for less than $5/skein.

The Crochet Crowd has a nice little FAQ on this yarn that I found informative. With regards to the caution Mikey explains: “Simply, don’t put it into the microwave. The fibres are sensitive to pick up the UV light to activate the heat. This is not a yarn to use for applications like a rice bag or anything along those lines.”

A review on YouTube  – I don’t remember which one it was but just search for Heat Wave yarn – indicated that it is similar to Supersaver in that it is rough at the start and softens with washing.  I washed the three-color scarf and confirmed that it was much softer after washing.

There was another reviewer who went all out and gave specific temperature info. Kudos to Jillian Eve. She even did a video which I found interesting to watch. She found the Heat Wave significantly warmer.

After I read her review I remembered that we have one of those tools to measure temperature. I tried it but I did not get the same results she did. Maybe due to location? I put the scarf and a couple of skeins of comparable colored yarn on a metal chair in my backyard. It was a cloudy day and very humid and a bit cool. I did find the maroon color warmer but the blue and grey were pretty close to the other manufacturer yarns in the hour or so I had them out there. I measured them outside and then again inside. Inside they quickly went back to normal temps.

When my yarn came in it looked pretty much like any other yarn. When I started to work with it, I found each color different. The grey (color name radio) was the softest by far and had less pilling than the other two. The maroon (color name luggage) was a little rough and most like Super Saver in my opinion. The blue (color name swim shorts) was full of pilling and I did not like working with it at all. In fact, I had a small ball leftover after I did the multi-colored one and will probably just throw it out. I hear the gasping. Throw out yarn?? It isn’t enough to do much with and I wouldn’t want to combine it with another type of yarn because of the specific properties of this yarn. That said, Jillian Eve did not complain about pilling and she seemed to like working with it so maybe I just got a bad skein. In her video, she indicated she is more familiar with wool but found the Heat Wave had some similar properties.

Here is a picture of three scarves. They are about 72″ long. I’ve already sent them off but I think they were about 6″ wide.

The maroonish color did not show up well in the photo. It is a much prettier shade of red, not as dark as it looks there. You can see it a little better in the photo where I used all three colors to finish up the yarn. A darker blue would have worked better here I think but it will be warm regardless.

Here are all the colors from the Yarnspirations website. I did think the yarn names are funny considering it is supposed to keep you warm. Maybe thinking about the beach makes you feel warm.

In order: top row: Sandy Shores, Seaweed, Beach Ball, Bikini, Blue Skies, Red Hot, Swim Shorts (my blue),
bottom row: Passport, Radio (my grey), Summer Night, Beach Bag, Ocean, Luggage (my maroon)

I would not buy the blue again but the grey was nice. I guess I’d have to try each color to see how it feels and works. I probably won’t do that unless I find it locally. Let me know if you try it and have a different experience.

Happy Crocheting!

Happy crocheting!