Knitting with hand-dyed yarn

I’ve been told that if you knit with hand-dyed yarn, you have to alternate between skeins so the colors work together and you don’t have a distinct line between skeins. How do you do this? Do you cut off when you switch and have 10,000 strings hanging out from skipping skeins? It doesn’t make sense to me…

You can alternate rows. First 2 rows, skein A. Rows 3&4, skein B. Which brings you back to the edge that has the working yarn for skein A. Carry the unused yarn up the side (just like with striping.) And catch the ends into the seam when you finish. Or if a scarf, do an overcast crochet border to “hide” the extra yarn.

Reread my post & realized I could have explained better. Knit 2 rows with skein A-leave the yarn dangle. Work next 2 rows from skein B-leave yarn dangle. Pick up the yarn from skein A & use it to knit 2 more rows. Repeat, changing skeins every 2 rows. The only ends are at the very beginning when you start the skeins. At the one edge, you have loops that cross over each other.

Some hand dyed is more even than others. My usual way to do it is to dye up from the washed fleece, then send to the mill for carding. their picker/blenders do such a great job, you’d never know the dye job wasn’t so great.

OTOH, when I do the carding myself, there are always variations. I don’t mind them, but if I were to try and avoid them, I’d alternate rows as above. Or better yet, work a simple 2 color pattern, even tho you are using only one pattern. (would that be too hard?)

I dyed a pile of wool…but I dyed them all together in the same pot…just kept knitting…and it seems to be fine…but I wouldn’t trust that persay!

I think I’m just not smart enough to do this!!! Let me see if I understand–I run the yarn along the edge and have loops at the beginning of each row? Isn’t that going to look weird to have a “hanging loop” all along the edge of the scarf? Maybe not since it’s only 2 rows? I’m using a beautiful skein of Farmhouse Yarns Lumpy Bumpy in Watermelon and I’m just doing a plain old garter stitch scarf using size 15 needles. There’s only 120 yards in the skein and I’m afraid it won’t make my scarf long enough. My LNS says it will, but I have a fat neck, so that’s when I decided I needed another skein. At $22 per skein, plus this issue with carrying the other skein along, maybe not… I won’t wear it for warmth–just a decorative accessory with a jacket. Do I need to just forget the extra skein and how to carry it along and use the one skein I have?

Just 2 rows won’t be much of a loop, and they can easily be hidden in the seam. If your item is to be seamless, you’d ned some sort of edging on it to hide the small loops.

If you have one of the more popular knitting machines, that is how 2 color knitting would be anyway, as they knit 2 rows of color 1, then 2 rows of color 2. Superba and certain Toyota machines are the only ones than can knit 2 colors in the same row, not 2 at a time.


If the yarn color looks the same on the 2 skeins, then you don’t need to alternate the 2 rows. Alternating is a way to disguise color variations. Say if the yarn comes from different dye lots. Or if you are using a self stripeing yarn that in making ugly blocks of color.