Thanks to its soft, luxurious feel and silky drape, velvet yarn is one of the most captivating threads available. It’s no wonder this yarn is popular for both amigurumi, clothing, and more!
Bernat Velvet Yarn is a superior velvet yarn option because of its versatility and accessibility. A bulky weight (5) yarn, it can be used for amigurumi, wearables, and for baby items. Its huge array of colors makes it easy to work with, though all velvet sheds easily and is not for beginners.
Bernat is one of the more popular velvet yarn brands. Not only does it have quite a few color options for Velvet, but it also has two other types: Baby Velvet and Crushed Velvet. While this review will focus primarily on Velvet, I will briefly offer my opinions and comparisons of both Baby and Crushed.
To keep this review as honest as I can, I will admit I personally don’t like it for wearables, so most of my review will cover how it felt while making amigurumi and pillows. However, many people out there love making beanies, gloves, cardigans, and more with it.
I have made quite a few amigurumi with velvet yarns and will recount my experiences with it in the review below.
Table of Contents
Bernat Velvet Yarn Breakdown
|Number of Colorways||24+ (solid only)|
|How does it feel?||Extremely soft and silky|
If you search for ‘velvet yarn’ online or walk down the velvet yarn section of a Michaels or a JOANN, Bernat is most likely the first, if not only, brand you will see. Its popularity is not a fluke; their velvet yarn is superior.
Unfortunately, with a luxurious yarn like Velvet, its price may cause big projects to become costly. I have also experienced many of its color shades disappearing throughout the years.
With its popularity, it makes sense to change up their available colorways so there is never a lack of choices. With 315 yards per ball, there is a lot of yarn to work with in just one skein! You can make all kinds of things with just one ball of Velvet.
It’s a gorgeous yarn. It is one of the softest polyester yarns I have ever worked with. These super soft, plush yarns are tempting to work with right off of the bat, but they are not beginner friendly. I would not recommend velvet yarn for beginners.
The fluffier the yarn, the harder the stitches are to see, which can lead to dropped stitches, frustrations, and wonky creations. This yarn should be used after you have some experience with crocheting and are able to recognize stitches.
Until then, I would recommend acrylic or a non-plush yarn to start off with. I know it’s tempting, but save yourself some frustration before you indulge in velvet yarns!
One of the biggest cons of velvet yarn is that it sheds incredibly easily. Shedding like a furry animal in summer isn’t selective to just Bernat Velvet. It is one of the major drawbacks of any velvet or fuzzy yarn you may use, regardless of brand. When using Velvet, it may be a good idea to have a lint roller nearby to pick up your trail of loose fuzz that gets left behind as you create your project.
I find that Bernat tends to shed less than other velvet yarn brands. I have used Lion Brand Vel-Luxe yarn before, and it did not have the same durability as Bernat. It felt much thinner, snapped easier, and shedded like there was no tomorrow.
While the skeins have plenty of workable yarn, they almost always have multiple knots throughout. If you pull your yarn from the center, you’ll find most of these knots quicker than those who work with the outside tail.
The knots are usually easy to work around, especially with amigurumi. You just have to keep the knot on the inside of your project. Sometimes, if they’re too awkward, it would be easier to snip off the knot and reattach your yarn with an unknotted strand. It just gets annoying when you find knot after knot after knot when you’re on a roll.
My experience using this yarn!
To keep this review as honest as I can, I will say I did not listen to the not-a-beginner-friendly-yarn warnings I mentioned before. Bernat Velvet was one of my very first yarns I ever worked with. I indulged in that silky softness before I should have.
It wasn’t easy, and I didn’t crochet much when I worked with Velvet. When I switched to acrylic yarn, I found that it was much easier to use because I could see the stitches. After I worked up a few amigurumi with a yarn I could see, I picked Velvet back up and, boy, was it great to work with!
Velvet is one of my favorite yarns. I love the feel of it, and how soft it is. I love how the creations come out, looking incredibly soft and sweet. There’s a softness to each Velvet item, as if the light around it has been diffused to create a gentle aura around it.
I find that the tighter my stitches are, the less it will retain its initial softness. With amigurumi, the yarn will still hold its silky softness and feel softer than if it was made out of acrylic yarn, but it will not feel the same as it did when loosely wrapped in a skein.
This yarn is not the easiest to work with. I crochet with tight stitches more often than not, and Velvet has a fragile, thin thread underneath its plush fuzz. If pulled too hard, it will snap and leave you with leftover fluff and an unworkable thread. Not only that, but Velvet tends to be slippy and needs a tighter tension to keep the stitches clean. There is a fine balance that needs to be met when working with Velvet.
I find that working with a much smaller hook actually minimizes the shedding and the weakening of the fluff. I typically go down about one hook size from the recommended size when I make amigurumi, but with Velvet, I often go down two or three or even four sizes.
I find that it’s not easy to sew large pieces together with just one Velvet strand. The threads rub up against each other as you sew, which leads to shedding, and that will lead to a thin thread you wouldn’t be able to use anymore.
Once the strands lose their fluff, they become unworkable. If your yarn starts to thin, I would recommend stopping that strand and starting back up at the next part that still retains its fuzz.
What should you use this yarn for?
Velvet is incredibly versatile. Not only can it be used to create amigurumi, but it can be used for all kinds of wearables, pillows, blankets, and more! Need a project to be soft? Velvet is the yarn for that!
If you are creating an item for a baby, toddler, or younger child, I would recommend using Bernat Baby Velvet instead. Baby Velvet is essentially the same as Velvet, with a slightly smaller weight and the ability to be thrown into the washing machine.
What yarns can I substitute for Bernat Velvet?
Velvet can be substituted with Bernat’s own Crushed Velvet, which is basically a variegated Velvet, or with Premier Yarn’s Retro Velvet.
Crushed Velvet is the same in price, weight, yardage, and size, but it does not come in solids and has a limited color palette. It does come in fun colors, and it’s always fun to see how variegated yarns end up looking!
On the other hand, Retro Velvet has 28 colors to choose from. Its yardage per skein is slightly smaller, at only 306 yards, but it can be machine washed (but not dried). It is also cheaper at $8.99 per skein at the time of this review. It has the same Bulky (5) weight as Velvet, with the same recommended hook size of 6.5mm or K-10.5 hook.
Baby Velvet and Crushed Velvet Comparisons
Bernat has two other types of popular velvet yarn: Baby and Crushed. There is a Baby Crushed Velvet and Velvet Plus, but both are not nearly as popular as the other three. I have not worked with either of those. Each type comes with different shades of colors.
Baby is specifically made for kids in mind. I find it the most durable of the three types. It is also machine washable, which is a big plus! When compared to Velvet, it does sacrifice just a bit of softness due to its durability, but it still holds an incredible silky softness to it.
Crushed, from my experience, is the softest of the three. It does not come in solid colors and has a limited color palette. I’ve found that Crushed has the least amount of knots in each skein, even when pulled from the center. It’s lovely to work with!
|Metric||Baby Velvet||Crushed Velvet|
|Number of Colorways||12+ (solid only)||12+ (variegated only)|
|Weight||Worsted (4)||Bulky (5)|
|Fiber||100% Polyester||100% Polyester|
|Care||Machine wash and dry||Handwash|
|How does it feel?||Soft and silky||Incredibly soft and silky|
3 Easy Velvet Patterns!
Tri-Color Lenin Baby Blanket
Who doesn’t love a soft blanket? While this pattern was created with Velvet in mind, I would suggest switching it out to Baby Velvet instead, due to its machine washability. Baby Velvet is slightly smaller, so you may need to adjust the pattern to reach the pattern’s blanket size! Don’t worry too much about adjusting this pattern; it only has one type of stitch, making it easily adjustable.
If you’re looking for a simple beanie to create with silky velvet yarn, look no further! This beanie, created with just single crochets, is perfect for beginners. It’s a great pattern for beginning your journey into hats and other wearables with velvet yarns.
I just have to mention my velvet bee pattern! Not only is it a super easy amigurumi to create, but you can customize the colors of it to whatever you’d like. It’s a great amigurumi pattern for beginners to start working with velvet yarn.
Commonly Asked Questions
What hook should I use for Bernat Velvet?
The recommended hook for Bernat Velvet is 6.5mm or, in US sizes, a K-10.5 hook.
Can Bernat Velvet yarn be washed?
Bernat Velvet can be washed, but it should be hand washed only.
Is Bernat Velvet yarn hard to crochet?
Bernat Velvet Yarn can be difficult for beginners to use. If you’re at an intermediate level, then Velvet to be a fun challenge that gets easier to work with over time.
How many skeins of Bernat velvet yarn do I need for a blanket?
6-7 balls of Bernat Velvet is enough for a 50×60 inch single crocheted throw blanket. More skeins should be added for bigger blankets, and larger stitches like half double or double crochet stitches use less yarn than single crochet stitches.
The best way to figure out how many skeins you will need for a blanket is to create a gauge swatch and math your way into figuring out precisely how much you will need.
It’s always better to get more skeins than you think you’ll need, because you never know if you’ll need to play yarn chicken towards the end of your project!
What crochet stitches are best for velvet?
Any stitch can be worked with velvet yarn. As long as you can recognize the stitches, anything is possible.
If you want to work with velvet yarn but find that seeing the stitches is frustrating, you can use the Basket Weave stitch or any stitch that involves working around the post of the stitch rather than that tiny, very top chain.
How do you keep velvet yarn from tangling?
The two things to note when untangling velvet yarn are to be gentle and patient. It snaps very easily if you’re aggressively trying to pull the tangle out.
As long as you wrap it around itself, either by rerolling it or simply wrapping the loose end around the rest of the skein, and keep it from becoming an untamable pile of yarn barf, it will keep itself free of tangles.
Is chenille yarn the same as velvet yarn?
While very similar, velvet yarn is essentially a silkier version of chenille. Chenille is often classified as Super Bulky (6) in weight, making it bigger and chunkier than Velvet.