This year for Christmas I've decided to give homemade gifts to my family, including a knit toque. Now, I am a bit of a yarn snob, but I'm not too bad. I think that Acrylic yarn has it's use but in general I prefer to use wool, especially for clothing. My local yarn shop has a fantastic selection of beautiful yarn, and I don't mind spending the extra for good quality wool. Plus this is Canada, and we need the extra warmth!
So what's my problem? Most real wool is hand-wash only. I go to the yarn store, and I stand in front of the beautiful wool, and I think "this would be perfect, but it's hand wash only!" There's a limited supply of appropriate superwash (real wool that is machine washable), and what I really want to use is the nice, soft, hand-wash only wool, but I feel such guilt! I hate handwashing my own knits, and I feel like it would somehow be rude to give my family hats that they can't throw in the washing machine without ending up with shrunken felt.
So what would you think if someone gave you a hat made out of real wool, that you would have to hand wash? Would you think "Oh, how lovely!" or would you think "hand wash? I don't think so!" and throw it in a drawer? Should I get over my fear of hand washing, or should I bite the bullet and go for acrylic?