I Need Some Good Yarn

Since I first started learning to knit I’ve been buying cheap yarn. Mostly acrylic and a little cotton. I feel like I’m about ready to try something with some good quality yarn.

Anyone have suggestions on some decent quality, good feeling yarn that isn’t too expensive for something like maybe a sweater?

I shudder to even think about knitting a sweater but I feel like until I do I’m not a real knitter.

I knit my first sweater 3 mos after I had started knitting. It’s much easier than you think! I did a top-down raglan from Knitting Pure and Simple.

As for yarn… do you want wool, acrylic, cotton…??

OK… Will you be hand washing it or tossing in washing machine. Do you want a winter sweater or a spring/summer sweater.


Sorry, imagine a 7 month pregnant daughter w/ her hubby & their 21 month old daughter asking me why do you ask so many ? ( I was finding yarn for an afghan. )

Any KnitPicks yarn. High quality, low cost wool. And, you might want to consider getting a copy of [I]The Sweater Workshop[/I] by Jacqueline Fee. Then you will be able to calculate your own sweaters, knit in the round, at your own gauge, with your own yarn. You don’t have to follow a line by line pattern. Plus, your Options set will get you through most of the sweater knitting, but you will need a large selection of DPN’s and 16" circulars (all available from KnitPicks, so you only have to order from one company, and you will most likely get free shipping.)

I also highly recommend knitting all your sweaters in the round, from the bottom up. (it’s what I do all of the time) for several reasons: You can try it on as you go, there are no seams to sew up (a big plus for me), and they always seem to get done faster.

As for yarn fiber, since you’re on the road a lot, I would recommend a superwash wool, because you can just throw it in the laundry with all of your other stuff. You can wash acrylic, also, but if you can get a high quality wool for the same price as a synthetic, why not?

Hope that helps you out!

Yeah, I’m using KnitPicks Telemark for a sweater for my husband. Cheapcheapcheap, but not so soft. :pout: It looks REALLY nice, though! I just got some KnitPicks Shine today (:yay:) and it’s SUPER soft. It’s a cotton, so it’d make a really good summer sweater of some kind! :thumbsup:

Oh–just remembered, I did some hats out of Patons Merino wool, and it was quite nice to work with. You can get it at Michaels for about $5 a skein, which is still fairly inexpensive.

Wow! Ok.

Let’s see here. I prefer wool, but machine washable would be excellent. I want to make some stuff for both cool weather and cold weather. I would even like to make some stuff for summer too.

Conti: Lots of info there. Thanks. I would prefer knitting in the round to seaming. I’ll look for that book.

Hi Mason.

That is such an open-ended question. Asking a knitter what kind of yarn to make a sweater out of is like asking how much a house costs. Depends. Are you looking for wool? Do you mind having to hand wash or dry clean your sweater? Or is washable the way to go for you? How much do you want to spend? Yarn prices as you might already have discovered, go from reasonable to ridiculously expensive.

I suggest you find your pattern first and when you find one you like and feel you can tackle, look for a yarn to match the gauge of the sweater. I’d recommend starting with one that called for a worsted weight yarn.

Knit Picks is a great source for yarn. And they are having a SALE! on their already reasonable prices.

You are already a serious knitter. You will do fine. Just remember that gauge matters in sweater making more than scarves, socks and hats. If you want your sweater to fit, make a gauge swatch.

And as Ingrid says “Trust the pattern, grasshopper.” (Ok – the grasshopper part is mine :happydance:)

If you have a little time, you might want to read some of the yarn reviews on Knitter’s Review

Best of luck on your project!


The whole gauge thing bothers me. I haven’t even attempted to gauge anything yet as I’m sure I’ll never get it right. I was kind of leaning towards a bottom up, adjust as you go kind of thing.

But I guess I’ll have to learn to do it right some time. :rofling:

Sorry, but you won’t get away without a gauge swatch, even in the round. :shrug: It will keep you from spending a lot of time and effort knitting the Jolly Green Giant a Christmas present or making a gift for one of Santa’s elves. That said, you will still have to pay attention to gauge while you work on your sweater and make adjustments as needed. But you will be rewarded for your efforts if you do. :thumbsup:

Debbie Bliss has a superwash merino that’s wonderful, and often on sale. It’s a worsted weight.

www.knittingfool.com has a sweater calculator for top-down raglan sweaters that works with your gauge and your yarn. So you can punch in your figures and they’ll give you a pattern, rather than having to match the gauge to a pre-written pattern.

Yeah, I was afraid of that. I’ll just have to bite the bullet and learn to swatch I guess.

I’m knitting my first sweater with Patons Classic Wool, and it’s soft (but not machine washable!). Cascade 220 is another nice wool.

Cotton, since it’s so heavy, will tend to sag under its own weight. I know we gals don’t like saggy sweaters, and I would imagine guys don’t either!

And what’s this about you not feeling like you’re a real knitter?! Mason, you’ve knitted socks! You’re definitely there.

“I hereby declare that by virtue of knowing his way around pointy sticks and string, as evidenced by production of items of hosiery and other various and sundry items, Mason (aka Knitting Guy) is a Real Knitter.”


Mason, with [I]The Sweater Workshop[/I], you still have to knit a gauge sample, but you don’t have to knit more than one, unless you don’t get the fabric you want the first time around. You can then calculate your project with [B]your[/B] gauge, with [B]your [/B]yarn, and then you can knit [B]whatever sweater you want[/B].

With [I]The Sweater Workshop[/I], you can knit the sweater [B]you[/B] want, with [B]your[/B] gauge, with the stitches [B]you[/B] want. You still have to knit a gauge sample, but only until you get the fabric [B]you[/B] want, so you virtually only have to knit a small gauge sample. It’s really liberating to knit your own design, rather than a line by line pattern.

The book has instructions for a stitch sampler, and you just practice different stitches. I’ll run through what you go through:

-Cast on in the round and garter stitch
-Stockinette stitch
-stripes (knit, purl, ribbing, and raised)
-different types of raglan decreases
-4 different types of binding offs.

The book has percentages for raglans, drop shoulder sweaters, and vests. I highly recommend it.

When you do a guage swatch wash it when done by what ever method you plan on washing the finished item. Sometimes super wash or handwashable wool grows and other fibers might even tighten or shrink, so you want to check that out before making a calculation. The Yarn Harlot gives quite a lecture to the reluctant swatcher in her book [U]Knitting Rules![/U]

Exactly, never forget that [B]integral[/B] step.

And people always ask me why I don’t want to knit sweaters…

When I first started crocheting I used all 100% acrylic. Only when I started knitting did I discover wools. Ive used merino wool and that was nice but Im knitting my first sweater with lion brand wool ease and I really like it. Its nice and soft and its I think 80% acrylic 20% wool. Its not expensive at all. I think it was maybe 3 to 4 bucks per skein.

Thanks everyone. Looks like I still have a lot to learn.