Poncho needing 10 balls of yarn?

Hi, I am fairly new to knitting after picking it up again with a long absense. It’s been about 20 yrs since I knitted as a child.

Anyway I am making a basic Poncho for my daughter. I am using the pattern at http://www.lionbrand.com/patterns/kbcl-funFurTrimmedPoncho.html which is basically two rectangles stitched together.

I am using 8mm needles and a yarn which has the same tension as mentioned in the pattern. When I checked my Gauge was 12 stitches per10cm. I calculated I needed 38 stitches.I am a bit all over the place with this gauge business but the 38stitches makes the rectangle 12" wide in my yarn. Using the pattern if I make each length 22" long … basically I made a pattern out of paper
:oops: with these measurements to try and get my head around it all and it fits my daughter perfectly so I want to stick to the finished garment measurement of 12x22" for each rectangle.

So here’s my problem, I have used ONE ball of yarn and I haven’t even knitted 5" into my first rectangle. So according to my calculations I am going to need 4-5 balls of yarn for each rectangle. So 10 balls for one poncho.

What is going on? Not only is it going to be very very heavy but most child’s poncho’s call for a few balls of wool, 4 at the most.

All I cant attribute this to is my choice of yarn. I’m in Australia so we have different yarns so I can’t just go out and buy the type mentioned in the pattern. I chose a yarn that is 45% wool, 13% acrylic, 42% polyamide, 50g each ball and approx 30metres in length. It says the needle size is 8mm and the tension 11 stitches x 22rows (10cm x10cm sq).

Given I am just one ball and 5" into the first rectangle, I am wondering if I call it quits and buy a different yarn? Will this make a difference?. I am just wondering if because it’s half wool it weighs heavier than other yarns and therefore I am maybe getting less in length than other lighter yarns? :shrug:

The poncho is just for a 5year old girl. Something just tells me 10 balls of wool doesn’t seem right here.


First of all, the yarn you’re using doesn’t seem to be bulky, which is what the pattern requires, thus it’s going to take more yarn to get 12" squares. Second, 30 metres per ball is less than the 50 in the yarn specified in the pattern. Both of those things together means that you’ll be using more yarn than the pattern states.

Something you might do is see how the poncho fits your daughter as you go along. Once it’s at the size you want, just stop knitting. It may not look like the one pictured in the pattern, but it should work fine.

You could also look for a pattern that calls for worsted weight yarn so that you’re not worried about the poncho’s weight.

OK thank you. Gee it’s quite confusing if you dont use the exact yarn and needles as mentioned in the patterns isn’t it? I have decided to not knit any further with that yarn and find a cheaper yarn, for my first project I’d prefer to stick with something cheaper incase the end result is not as desired.

Funnily enough I did notice Lion Brand here in Australia. It’s expensive though $13 per ball or skein as I think you call them there.

Wow, $13 per skein? I’m not sure of the conversion rate, but that seems like a lot! :shock:

And yes, not using the yarn specified can be a problem, mostly when the weights are different. (Not even all worsteds are the same, as I’ve discovered the hard way. :pout:)

I do hope you can find something that works, though! Just think “bulky”!

Yeah I thought it was $$ too compared to most other yarns you can buy, but they do have a lot quantity wise compared to most on the market here. With the conversion rate it would be about US$10, the exchange is excellent at the moment @80c

However because it’s imported and Made in the USA you ultimately pay a lot more.

I am definately thinking bulky :teehee:


Please be sure to post photos of the poncho when you complete it!

It seems like the yarn you are using is quite bulky, at 50 grams equaling 30 meters and a gauge of 3sts/in (12 per 10cm). Your yarn is only slightly less bulky than the suggested yarn. The suggested yarn is a novelty yarn, though, so it’s not quite the same. In any case, your gauge is pretty close to the patten gauge. I’m wondering if there’s something wrong in the calculations of how many balls you’ll need. One ball of yarn gives you how many stitches and how many rows?

Bulky yarns always require more grams to make something of the same measurements. I think if you use a less bulky yarn, you can get more mileage out of each ball. And it will certainly be less heavy.

Hi, I have cast on 38 stitches and knitted 15 rows (is a V classed as one row?) or 30 rows if you just count the strait line of stitches. Sorry not sure what constitutes one row. :oops: The piece measures 12" x 4.5"

I need the finished piece to measure 12" x 22" so I calculate that to be 5 balls to finish one piece. I need 2 pieces to complete the Poncho, so 10 balls.
(sorry we call them ‘balls’ here I’ll have to try to remember to say skein, does balls sound funny an unfamiliar to you when you see it read or do you sometimes call them balls too? I noticed you did in your post?)

Nothing wrong with calling them balls. :slight_smile:

According to my calculations, the pattern is asking for 4 balls of yarn that are 57 yds long. That’s 228 yards, which is about 209 meters. If you’re using 30 meter balls, you’ll need at least 7 to finish the pattern as written. If you’re getting 12 stitches:10 cm rather than the 11 stitches it’s calling for, you’ll use a little more yarn. So 10 may not be way off… :shrug:

Oh, and each V on the right side (outside of the garment) is one stitch, and one line of Vs is a row. On the back side, the purls on one row look like interlocking smiles and frowns.

ETA: mwedzi’s right. The yarn in the pattern is a novelty yarn–I’ve used it, and its thick-and-thin/bumpy texture makes it take up a lot of room on the needle even though it’s very light. If you’re wanting to look for a different yarn to start over, you should be able to find boucle yarn somewhere. It will give you something much closer to the original pattern.

Thanks, yeah I have decided to ditch that yarn for now and bought another. I didn’t get Bouclé though, this one is thinner but it’s knitting up nicely, the colour just isn’t ideal but maybe for my second Poncho I can head back into the rainbows :happydance: I just wanted to get on with it for this one.

I ended up adding more stitches to my project and working on 6.5mm needles. Given they are rectangles for the Poncho, I could afford to go off pattern and not be so worried about sticking to the guidelines, but it doesn’t help me for future projects that need accuracy. I’ll really have to get my head around all this planning ---- it all seems to be in the preparation and planning.