Whether you knit or you crochet, choosing the right yarn can make the difference between a perfect project and a complete failure. There are several factors that you need to consider when shopping for yarn. First, there is the fiber from which the yarn is made. Secondly, there is the weight of the yarn. Last but not least, you also need to consider the color and the dye lot. Keep on reading to learn how each one of these factors will affect the quality of your knitting project.
There are two main categories of yarn fibers, each one with several fiber choices.
Natural fibers are either plant based or animal based. There are dozens of fibers to choose from, but we will focus on the most popular ones.
Synthetic yarn is usually more affordable than natural yarn. In the past, synthetic yarn used to be of poor quality, but nowadays you can find synthetic fibers which are very similar to natural fibers, and there are even some projects where synthetic yarn can work a lot better. Moreover, since most synthetic fibers are smooth and elastic, they are rather easy to work with, so they are ideal for beginners. Here are the most popular synthetic fibers:
The weight expresses the thinness of the yarn. Very thin yarn is used for delicate projects and light garments, whereas thicker yarn is used for warm winter garments or bulky projects like blankets or carpets.
You can find yarn either dyed in a specific color, or undyed. You can use undyed yarn as it is, or you can dye it at home with special yarn dye. Dyed yarn be plain or it can come in a specific pattern such as:
Aside from the color, it is essential to also consider the dye lot. It is not uncommon for knitters to run out of yarn during a project, and it can be very hard to find the same yarn shade if you don’t know the dye lot.