Imagine you have recently been introduced to the wonderful world of knit and crochet. You found an amazing pattern and are anxious to get started on it. So, you take off to your local yarn shop. You walk in and are mesmerized by all the colors…they draw you in and speak to you. You walk over to a yarn that is particularly pretty and imagine the project you want to make. You can see yourself wearing that item, and in this color…just…wow! You give yourself that moment. It’s an amazing feeling. Enjoy!
All too soon, though, the bubble bursts and you realize you need to figure out if that amazing yarn is really something you can use for your project. Your patterns says you need a certain weight yarn, certain kinds of needles, you need to match a gauge. You look around and see isle after isle of yarn, needles, and other stuff. Some of it makes perfect sense, (after all, you are new, but not totally clueless!) and there are things you never saw before and can’t imagine how you might use them. You are now feeling a bit intimidated. Thankfully, this store has an amazing staff and they help you with your choices and it turns out to be a fun, easy experience.
But now you want to learn a bit more about the tools of this art so you are less overwhelmed when you go back to the store. Excellent!
Your yarn daydreams will become realities leading to a more fulfilling creative experience overall. It’s all good, my friend.
So, where to begin?
Well, that can depend on what has inspired your dreamy vision. Was it the yarn? The pattern? I haven’t really heard of someone choosing a needle first as inspiration for a project, but I wouldn’t be surprised if that were the case! Anything can inspire us, right?
We said earlier that It’s okay, I totally get it. It happens to me all the time…every time. That’s the fun of it.
After the period of dazzled amazement passes, you think about the pattern instructions and all that it says you need to achieve your perfect results. It says you need a specific type of yarn so we’ll start there.
There are all kinds of yarn. Each one is made of a specific fiber and spun to a particular draft for a specific weight characterized with a particular ply and twist. These different variables all bring specific qualities to the finished project. The pattern is designed with these specific characteristics in mind.
Different fibers lend qualities such as texture, strength and drape to your project’s finished fabric. The draft, or how the fibers are spun will result in varying yarn behaviors. The weight, or thickness of your yarn will determine how heavy your finished fabric is. Twist will lend a level of springiness to your finished fabric.
All of these qualities are what make each specific yarn better for one type of project than another. Read on to learn more about each of the different characteristics and how they can boost your freedom in creativity!
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