So, my latest FO, a scarf that is a Christmas gift.... was made with Red Heart with Love yarn. It was presented to me as an alternative to the yarn-that-is-not-to-be-named.
The other yarn runs around $3.65 for about 350 yards.
The Red Heart yarn is around $5.00 for about 370 yards.
The other yarn comes in almost a hundred colors.
The Red Heart yarn comes in about a dozen colors.
The other yarn is softer, and has a better all-over-evenness to the yarn that isn't BAD in Red Heart, but isn't quite as good quality-wise. If I ranked the first yarn as an 8 on a scale of 1 to 10 in quality; this one is closer to a 7.
But, it is a good 'almost' alternative. And it would be better if they came out with more colors. When it boils down to all else? The limited color options is probably the biggest detriment to me.
I absolutely LOVE that it's made in the US and for the price difference, I'm ok with the barely higher price if it's going towards American workers.
Now, most Red Heart yarns soften with the wash. So, I'm hoping a trip through the washer and dryer will help take this scarf to the next level of softness.
All-in-all? I will use it again... but it probably will be when I need something I can go and pick up quickly (as opposed to ordering on-line or special ordering through an LYS) and when the color matters very little.