July 31st, 2012

Tuesday’s Tip – Alternating Skeins when using Hand-Dyed Yarns

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Hand-dyed yarns can vary quite a bit in shade, even within the same colorway.  If you knit through one skein completely, then another, you’ll see a distinctive line in your project where the two skeins meet. This isn’t a problem if you’re making a one skein project, but what if you want to make a sweater, a shawl or something else using multiple skeins of hand dyed yarn? Try alternating your skeins! If knitting or crocheting flat, work two rows from one skein, then work two rows from another and so on. If working in the round, switch skeins at the start of each round. This will blend the color changes together to transition more smoothly and will give you a much cleaner look.

This same technique can be used when using commercially dyed yarns from different dye lots.

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Grace

Customer Service Liaison at WEBS - America's Yarn Store
I started working at WEBS in September 2010. I learned how to knit 5 years ago and have been crocheting since childhood. When I'm not knitting, I love to be outside with my Black Lab, Ellie.
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  • Allie @ Fiesta Cat Yarn

    Thanks for sharing this smart, simple tip!

  • Ebockley

    Even within one skein there are great differences.  I knit socks two at a time and split the skein in two.  It looked like I knit each sock with a different skein! Just gotta live with it!

  • http://twitter.com/stefaniegrrr stefanie

    It’s also not nearly as annoying to do as one might think – and TOTALLY worth the finished results. Thanks for sharing this tip! 

  • Vicky

    Currently knitting a cardigan with 2 different dyelots of commerciial wool, knitted the bask in one dyelot. Finished the back & 1 sleeve so as to tally what was needed to complete the remaining half, realised i would be cutting it fine so added a lace pattern above the armhole decrease on all pieces, so now have an original that looks like is from the one dyelot.

  • Chatterbox Knitter

    There actually is a ratio for using skeins of different lots or using hand dyed yarns. It really depends on how many skeins you have overall.  Alternating using the 2/1; 3/2; 4/3 etc. works really well.  Just carry the alternate yarn on the edge so you won’t have a bunch of ends to work in later.
    Then again you can purposely change dye lots to put emphsis in an area. For instance:  I saw some beautiful hand dyed yarn I HAD to have. I needed three skeins. They have two of one dye lot and a single that was close but had a bit more peach and green in it. So when I looked at my shawl pattern I saw where I could use the peachier one in the center and in the second ring of the pattern. Then I will use the two skeins on the first ring and the last ring. Depending how much of the peachier one I have my edge may be of that one.