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Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Bernat Mohair Plus Yarn

Bernat produced a number of fine mohair yarns for the textile artist to explore and create.  Today, let's talk their Mohair Plus brand.

The official Patent was issued November 1964,although the yarn was actually released to the market in 1963 with the advertising blitz in newspapers going full force across major city markets in the United States by the local yarn shops.  

66% mohair, 17% virgin wool, 17% nylon
1-1/2 oz balls (pre-brushed), 103 yards each

Note:  This yarn makeup is the same as Bernat Mohairspun, with the difference being the Mohair Plus is pre-brushed.   In many patterns, they are shown as interchangeable or combined for effect.  



This 1964 advertisement was one of the first.   Interesting that the same ad is placed in different markets, which, I assume means, they are syndicated through Bernat.   Ie, Bernat supplies the suggested advertisements with the yarn deliveries to the individual shops.  (Perhaps there is some type of contract agreement to ensure the promotion).    Also note that the yarn is 'on-sale' at point of introduction.   Another marketing tactic I'm sure.

This 1965 advertisement shows the Mohair Plus was originally produced in a balled shaped, versus the elongated skein.
Another highly successful ploy of Bernat' was the knit.  There were, at least, 10 different kits sold that featured the Mohair Plus yarn.    This particular kit -- Fluffi Tote Coat, in six fascinating colors, was very popular and marketed for several years.  The kits were available through the yarn shops as well.

The kits supplied everything but the knitting talent and the needles!   In this particular kit - for raglan mohair sweater - two variations of the pattern were given.


And, of course, there were a number of pattern books featuring not just Mohair Plus, but the other popular Bernat mohair yarn for this time period - Mohairspun.    This photo is the inside cover to the The Mohair Collection, Handicrafter Book 118.


In the late 1970s, Bernat apparently paired up with Judy Love of the then popular Stitchin' Times newspaper column.   The column, on a number of instances did complete columns of patterns featuring the Mohair Plus Yarn.  In these cases, 'Stitchin' Times' had patterns for the garments displayed that could be mailed away for.   Although sold under the name of Stitchin Times, there's no doubt that these designs were Bernat.


And promotions and sales continued until 1974, when the yarn was discontinued.  (For a yarn with an original suggested price of $1.40, it grew quite nicely (for Bernat) to a price of  $5.50/skein. 

There are quite a few vintage patterns for Mohair Plus.   There are a few in my shop, should you care to browse.   A substitute yarn should not be difficult; pick a mohair blend that meets the pattern stitch gauge.

Should you make create one of these designs, please share a picture (and what materials you used)!

Thanks for dropping by,

2 comments:

  1. Great post Lorrie; what memories this brings back! My Dad's oldest sister was an accomplished knitter. Whenever I would visit her apartment there was always a knitting project on the go. One year there were bags & bags & bags of pink Bernat mohair everywhere. When I'd ask what she was knitting all she'd say was that it was a surprise. For Christmas that year each of her four sisters-in-law (4) and each of their daughters (4 nieces) received a beautiful Bernat "kit" sweater. It was the shorter sweater in the bottom row, third from the left in your the kit advertisement. Even the big buttons were pink mohair!

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    1. What a sweet memory Liz. That number of sweaters would have been quite an accomplishment for your aunt. Now ... don't you wish you had a picture of the eight of you all wearing your pinks.

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