Which afghan blanket is best?

Sometimes called crocheted or knitted blankets, afghan blankets come in different colors, patterns and designs. They can add a more traditional or colorful aesthetic to any room. They’re also comfortable and warm, so they’re perfect for snuggling up on the couch or chair on a cold day. If you’re looking for something both functional and creative, the Boho Throw Outdoor Knitted Tassel Blanket is the best option.

What to know before you buy an afghan blanket

Uses

Similar to throw blankets, afghan blankets can add a bit of decor to any room. They can be tossed or neatly folded over large pieces of furniture, such as armchairs or sofas. Some can even be added to an existing bedspread for a splash of color.

Since they’re functional too, you can also use these blankets as you would any other. They’re the perfect way to keep warm and cozy on cold evenings at home. Plus, they’re designed to be breathable, meaning you won’t sweat as easily when using one.

Size

Afghan blankets come in nearly any size. Some are small enough to only be able to cover your legs and lap, while others are large enough to be used as a substitute for a standard comforter. Common sizes include:

  • 36 inches by 48 inches: Meant for the lap.
  • 50 inches by 65 inches: Meant for general use.

Those meant to fit on top of a mattress are also usually measured in inches. Here are the standard measurements based on the bed size:

  • Twin beds: 66 inches by 90 inches.
  • Full beds: 80 inches by 90 inches.
  • Queen beds: 90 inches by 100 inches.
  • King beds: 108 inches by 100 inches.

Cleaning and maintenance

While many modern comforters and throw blankets are machine-washable, afghan blankets often require special care when cleaning them. This is mainly because they’re crocheted or knitted and can start to unravel when tossed in the machine. Here is the best way to wash one of these blankets:

  • Fill a basin with cold or room temperature water and a delicate detergent.
  • Put the blanket in the water and let it fully soak.
  • Pour out the basin and add new water without detergent.
  • Repeat this process until the water is completely clear.
  • Remove the blanket and very lightly squeeze it to remove excess water. Avoid wringing it. If necessary, pat it with an absorbent towel to remove more liquid.
  • Lay out the blanket in a warm place so it can air dry. If needed, flip it over every couple of hours until dry.

If you do want to wash it in a machine, check the label for the recommended cleaning instructions first. Some afghan blankets can be washed on a delicate cycle and put in the dryer on a tumble dry low cycle.

What to look for in a quality afghan blanket

Material

The material used affects the following: texture, heat retention, comfort and durability.

Most afghan blankets consist of yarns with the most common options being:

  • Wool: This is a natural fiber that’s durable, easy to dye and gentle on sensitive skin. It varies in weight.
  • Acrylic: Similar to wool, acrylic is soft and warm. However, it’s usually lighter than wool blankets.
  • Cotton: Hypoallergenic and lightweight, cotton is a sustainable fabric that’s comfortable and warm.
  • Nylon: Well-insulated and lightweight, nylon is resistant to general wear and tear because of its stretchy nature.
  • Polyester: A relatively inexpensive material, polyester is durable and resistant to tears or wrinkles. These blankets are often machine-safe.

Some afghan blankets use a combination of these materials, such as cotton and nylon, giving them the advantages of both.

Design

Since they’re crocheted or knitted together, afghan blankets usually have a distinct repeated pattern. Those made from wool in particular often have intentional gaps between the stitching. This gives the blanket increased airflow, making them comfortable to use while preventing overheating.

When it comes to pattern and construction, here are the main styles of blankets:

  • Mile-a-minute: These blankets consist of multiple long strips that are connected at the edges. The strips are usually thick and have a chunkier look.
  • Motif: Motifs are individual squares, pentagons, circles, stars or other shapes constructed together to make a whole blanket.
  • Round: Offering a distinctly round shape, these blankets often have a repeating or spiral pattern throughout.
  • Ripple: These are constructed to have waves or ripples in the pattern.

Some afghan blankets include tassels on the edges, while others have a distinct border or are borderless. Depending on the style and material, some are more textured than others. Many are reversible, meaning they have the same pattern and texture on both sides.

Color and theme

These crocheted blankets come in many colors, too, such as solid blues, reds, yellows or greens. Others combine colors, shapes and patterns for a traditional, modern, rustic, vintage, warm or cool theme.

How much you can expect to spend on an afghan blanket

A simple afghan blanket starts at around $15, while a more detailed or larger one with higher-quality yarns can cost upward of $100.

Afghan blanket FAQ

Can you make an afghan blanket?

A. If you know how to crotchet and have enough yarn, it is possible to make an afghan blanket. Check for an online video tutorial on how to make the design or pattern of your choosing.

What are some common problems with these blankets?

A. If they’re not constructed well, or if the material isn’t durable enough, these blankets can end up stretching or losing their shape over time, especially when washed in a machine. If you know how to crochet or knit, it’s possible to restore the blanket to its original shape, though. Another common issue is that these blankets can smell musty if they haven’t been cleaned in a while.

What’s the best afghan blanket to buy?

Top afghan blanket

Boho Throw Outdoor Knitted Tassel Blanket

Boho Throw Outdoor Knitted Tassel Blanket

What you need to know: This decorative afghan blanket is colorful and sure to brighten up any room.

What you’ll love: With five vibrant patterns to choose from, this acrylic blanket can add color to your living room or bedroom. It has beautiful fringes and is soft and comfortable. It’s also large enough to cozy up at 60 inches by 50 inches.

What you should consider: It’s more decorative than functional, as it doesn’t provide much warmth.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top afghan blanket for the money

Ntbay Acrylic Knitted Throw Blanket

Ntbay Acrylic Knitted Throw Blanket

What you need to know: This knitted afghan comes in 14 simple colors and patterns, including waves, checkers and stripes, making it a great addition to minimalistic spaces.

What you’ll love: It consists of soft, durable acrylic that’s machine-washable. It’s lightweight and practical too. In all, it’s 51 inches by 67 inches, including the tassels.

What you should consider: It is stretchy and can start to lose its shape over time.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Alcott Hill Magdeline Knitted Throw

Alcott Hill Magdeline Knitted Throw

What you need to know: This large afghan knitted blanket comes in a single color and works best in modern spaces.

What you’ll love: Available in six colors, including burgundy and charcoal gray, this machine-washable blanket consists of polyester and has tassels. It’s heavy and thick, making it ideal for colder climates. It also comes in two sizes: 50 inches by 60 inches and 60 inches by 80 inches.

What you should consider: It’s loosely threaded, so it can start to come apart if someone pulls at it frequently.

Where to buy: Sold by Wayfair

 

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Angela Watson writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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