What are the best and worst yarns to buy?

I am so new to this knitting world. DH wants to buy me yarn off of ebay. I have know clue as to what to buy and what to stay clear of. I see the names Lion Brand, Bernat, Four Season’s Noblesse Superwash wool, Plymouth Encore DK. I what does DK mean anyway???

I have only use Plymouth encore colorspun for my shurg and bed socks and Fortissma Socka for my basic socks and Galway Colornep wool for my tote .

What do you use?

DK is a yarn weight. It’s just under worsted. Here’s a link;

As for the best yarns…that’s a loaded question that you’ll 500 different answers to. Everyone has their own favorites and likes and dislikes. :shrug:

That being said… I love Plymouth Encore and most Bernat yarns I’ve come across have been good, but I certainly haven’t tried them all.

Nanaof6, do you have a yarn shop in your area? It would probably be a good idea to go there and look at yarn in person. You can feel it, ask questions, and get ideas by looking at pattern books they have.

Then, when you have a better idea of what you want, you can look on eBay again, and make a better decision.

Good luck!

The best is the one you like the best and the worst is the one you hate. Its as simple as that.:shrug: There are some people out there that for whatever reason hate wool. I think the best strategy is to do as Shandeh says and go to a yarn store. In some ways its like wine tasting. After going around a while you’ll develop your own “palate”.

I ditto Shandeh. Also if you are really flying blind try, http://www.knittersreview.com/yarn.asp

Yarn reviews. It is still an opinion, but it can give you an idea.

Also, some yarns are better for one project and the same yarn will be awful for another project. So it also depends what you’re making.


I’d advise the same as Shandeh…But…I don’t have LYS at all and still i try to figure out what’s what. First of all, i checked the weight system, so i’ll know what garments i can make with different weights of wool. Then, IMHO, you should think if you’re allergic to any of the yarn’s ingredients. Some only see wool and start scratching, others can’t touch acrylics… I would also browse this forum, because you can learn a lot from what people here tell about different yarns.
for example - I never saw Malabrigo, but i saw that everyone love it! And those who get it for the first time - never disappointed. So i have an idea and when i’ll be able - i’m going to try it!
Good luck and hooray for the supportive DH :cheering::cheering::cheering:

I like to touch yarn - that tells me if I like it - and then you can get the same stuff off Ebay. Jeremy said it the best - the best yarns are the ones you like and the worst ones are the ones you don’t.

If it helps, here are some yarns I’ve used recently that I’ve enjoyed working with.

Naturally Dawn (a laceweight wool/silk blend)
Geisha (a really soft bulky weight novelty yarn)
Lion Brand Wool Ease (I used their super bulky for an afghan)
Filatura Di Crosa Baby Kid Extra and Rowan Kidsilk (laceweight mohair yarns)
Little Lehigh Pebbles (a DK weight cotton/acrylic blend, better for knitting than crocheting)

At least, these are the ones I can remember. I also bought a bunch of Cascade brand wool yarn to make a sweater, but I can’t remember which type it is.

Here are some yarns that I have tried and LOVE. :heart:

Debbie Bliss - anything by this company is wonderful, but my absolute favorite is PURE SILK :heart::heart::heart:
Berroco Cotton Twist - perfect worsted weight yarn for summer knitting, with a lovely sheen
Malabrigo - gorgeous, soft, and satisfying when you knit
Berroco Peruvia - a LOT like Malabrigo :heart:
Patons Grace - summer knitting and baby items
Lamb’s Pride - excellent wool yarn
Bernat Baby Coordinates - perfect for baby blankets
Bernat Baby - SO SOFT!
Bernat Cotton Tots - soft, easy to use, and makes lovely fabric
Bernat Handicrafter - perfect for dishcloths
Lion CottonEase - baby items
Lion Incredible - fun to knit with for fast summer projects
Lion Wool Ease or Plymouth Encore- perfect for hats, mittens, gloves, scarves, sweaters
Berroco Plush - makes a SUPER SOFT, cushy fabric
TLC Amore - I like to double-strand this yarn to make soft, cushy scarves
Lisa Souza Hand-dyed Sock Yarns
Wildfoote Luxury Sock Yarn - my favorite soft sock yarn
Lang Jawoll - my favorite standard sock yarn

Here are some yarns that I have tried and HATE. :ick:
Lion Trellis - needle always gets stuck in ladders
Lion Homespun - hurts my hands when knitting, and splits easily
Lion Microspun - splits easily, and VERY hard to weave in loose ends
Red Heart Super Saver - hurts my hands when knitting, cheap looking
Red Heart Baby Clouds - too thick, inconsistent, and hurts hands
Any brand of chenille yarn - hurts hands, stitches come loose and get out of shape
Any brand of eyelash yarn - I only use this for children’s clothing, and only under protest. :teehee:

if oyu want personal opinions to get a gauge of whats out there…

my personal favorites are (im big on colors and feel)
SWTC - karaoke. soft with gorgeous colors. light worsted wt. the mermaid mix colorway is breathtaking in person

[jitterbug sock yarn](http://www.colinette.com/sess/utn;jsessionid=15466e4220a9bd3/shopdata/0020_yarns/0007_wools/0005_jitterbug/product_details.shopscript?article=0300_Jitterbug%2B-%2BBlue%2BParrot%2B%3D28JIT%2B-%2B16%3D29) - again the colors along with a nice subtle sheen, super soft and machine washable

manos del uruguay - stunning colors. single ply bulky thick and thin yarn. amazing. i LOVE this stuff

i appreciate serviceable yarns such as encore, but im not in love with encore. it gets the job done and done well, but i love amazing colorways. encore is a good yarn to use for most items that will be worn often or by kids or if there is a budget.

Those are GORGEOUS, geekgolightly! :inlove:

i know. i want to eat them up! and i love your first pick; the debbie bliss alpaca silk, too. it’s indescribably soft. i like the feel of it running through my fingers. i’ve only used it once and i keep petting it hoping to come up with an excuse to buy it.

Here’s the list of love and hates:


Just about any KnitPicks yarn you can get your hands on.


Bartletyarns 2 ply fisherman’s wool. My favorite yarn for oversized, weekend sweaters.

Punta del Este Just our yarns Mericash (a single ply merino/cashmere blend. love it.)

Just about any Morehouse Farm yarn you can get your hands on. I especially like their laceweight. It looks a little overspun on the skein, but it’s really not.

Web’s Valley Yarn Stockbridge- great stitch definition (I use it for a lot of aran sweaters)

Jamieson and Smith 2-ply Shetland wool

Alice Starmore Hebridian 3-ply

Karabella Aurora 8

Maine Merino

Koigu Kersti (it’s a bit splitty, but great for cables)

There are [B]many [/B]more, but those are my absolute favorites. I love all wools and natural fibers, and don’t get me started on sock yarns, you’d be reading this all day.


Any synthetic yarn. Any.

Any eyelash yarn (that’s about covered in #1, but…)

A super bulky yarn (except for a brushed yarn)

That’s about it!

Wow! Sandy, thats a big list . And I’m so disappointed that we don’t get any of those the best or the worst out here:(.

You know I make 99% of my yarn purchases on line…it is kind of like a “hobby” of mine to find yummy yarns at reduced prices. Buying yarn on line can be a bit dicey but I can’t think of any major disappointments. I got so much info from knitting forums I kind of knew ahead of time, you know?

Anyway favorites:

Cotton - King Tut, hands down! Love the sheen, drape, extraordinary colors.

Cotton blend - Valley yarns Goshen. Cotton, modal and a bit of silk. Yummy! Noro Lily which is cotton/silk blend, just lovely.

Wool - Noro Kureyon, Big Kureyon and all Noro wool blends.

Wool Blends - Cascade Bollicine Holiday. Wool and acrylic blend which is very nice.

“Workhorse” yarns - TLC cotton plus, Paton’s shetland chunky, paton’s merino.

As I get more confident in my skills I plan to splurge on Tilli Thomas silk and other ritzy stuff:drool:

There are no Bad" yarns, only yarns for which the prefect project has not yet been found:happydance:

I buy yarn from ebay all the time, it is an opportunity to get different yarn and save money. If it arrives and I decide it’s not what I wanted for a paticular project then I add it to my stash till the right project comes along!

If you ever see Yarn Bee PLAYFUL, avoid it like the plague!

Hobby Lobby clearanced that stuff out, and I stocked up on it, having not used it, and every day is another disaster. I’ll eventually probably just suck it up and do some lame garter stitching, but even at 50 cents each, I actually regret it.


I agree with Jeremy!

I personally love soft, yummy yarns.

It is like wine tasting! Everyone develops their own palate over time …and exposure to different offerings!

Good analogy, Jeremy! :thumbsup:

Hmm… well from experience, I bought a lot of 6 skeins of this pretty light green wool on eBay and when I received it, it was so rough and scratchy that the only thing I could possible use it for is maybe a beach bag. But handling it is so uncomfortable that I probably never will.

So I ditto going to a yarn shop and touching the yarns before making a decision.

Mmmm King Tut - I was in NYC last week and had a chance to visit Seaport Yarns (once I found the place, it’s like they don’t really want you to go there lol) and touch and see this brand for the first time - the colors are so beautiful.