Let’s sub…yarn that is…

Have you seen a pattern that is exactly what you’re looking for…only to be disappointed because the yarn called for is discontinued, too pricey, doesn’t come in colors you like, or you really just want to use yarn from your stash?

mountain colors worsted yarn

Mt. Colors 4/8’s Wool

Never fear..finding a yarn to substitute for the original is not as difficult as it might seem. In Part 1 of this short series of posts, we’ll look at some of the considerations of subbing yarns for creating a project as near to the original as possible.

The first thing you want to do is make a list of the attributes of the original yarn.

1. Fiber content ~ what fiber or fibers make up the original yarn?
2. Yarn weight ~ is it fingering, worsted, bulky, etc.
3. Texture ~ is the original yarn a single or multiple ply? Does it have texture or is it smooth?
4. Gauge ~ what is both the manufacturer’s recommend gauge and the gauge designated in the pattern?
5. Yardage/Ounces/Gram ~ how much yarn does one ball or skein of the original yarn have?

When considering substituting yarns I always determine the fiber content first. Why? Because the fiber content determines how the yarn behaves ~ does it have memory and bounce, does the fabric have a nice drape naturally. If I want my project to be similar to the original pattern, I’ll want to use a yarn with a similar fiber content as the original yarn.

Classic Elite Yarns Ariosa

Classic Elite Yarns Ariosa

Along with determining the fiber content I consider the weight of the original yarn. Sometimes a yarn that is not exactly the same will substitute quite nicely, and sometimes not. Knowing what the original yarn weight is/was will be helpful in finding just the right substitute.

Wednesday’s post: Texture & Gauge….

Happy Knitting~ Jean