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When it comes to selecting yarns, what could be an expert’s idea of heaven could easily be a beginner’s biggest dilemma. That’s because there is a wide array of yarns available in the market and it’s absolutely normal to be quite at loss of what to buy, especially in the start.

The most important thing to keep in mind is that there is an ideal yarn to use for every kind of crocheting project you can think of, so the first step is really knowing what type of crochet you are doing. This goes a long way in helping you select the best type of yarn to use based on the results you are envisioning for your finished product.

Selecting a Crocheting Project

Crocheting is an art, so naturally there are many different techniques and styles one can learn and master to achieve the finished products that they want.

For those who are still learning how to crochet, it is best to start with a traditional technique known as filet crochet. It is done mostly using graphs and following patterns, and it makes use of fine yarn. If you’re ready to move on to making blankets, shawls or thick-knit clothing, you can learn how to do the Afghan crochet. It requires the use of a long hook called an Afghan hook and it makes use of thicker fabric.

Realty is that each crocheting project is designed to be made with a specific type of yarn. That’s because a yarn’s characteristics can affect the size and appearance of your project, as well as give you an idea of the amount of yarn you require.

Different Types of Yarns

With a finished product in mind, it’s now time to select the best type of yarn to use for your project. To make things simple, yarns can easily be classified according to is fiber and weight.

Yarn Fiber

There are generally two types of yarn fiber – natural yarn and synthetic yarn. Natural yarn can be made of angora, cotton, cashmere, mohair, silk or wool, and is an excellent choice for those who desire softness in their crocheted items. Synthetic yarn, on the other hand, is made of materials such as acrylic, nylon, polyester and rayon. It is more durable and water-resistant compared to natural yarn, however it is definitely does not feel as luxurious and comfortable on the skin as natural yarn does.

For beginners who are just simply learning how to crochet, wool would make for a great choice, as it is a very resilient fiber and is very easy to unravel and re-use in the event that you make any mistakes. Cotton is more difficult to work with, as it is an inelastic fiber, however, it’s a lot cheaper.

Acrylic yarn is a popular fiber choice for beginners, as well, although some of the cheapest acrylics can be especially challenging to crochet with. Yet you can most certainly find good acrylic to use, as it is widely available, it comes in a variety of colors, and it is usually one of the more affordable choices for yarn.

Yarn Weight

A yarn’s weight or thickness is measured by the number of strands that are twisted together to make the yarn. It is very important to know a yarn’s weight, as it can greatly affect your crochet item’s total weight and texture. To check the weight of the yarn you are buying, all you have to do is read its weight classification label.

A yarn’s weight classification is just a designation for the diameter of the yarn, and is standardized depending on the project you are making. Basically, a yarn weight classification of 1 refers to super fine yarn, and is best suitable for socks or other baby items. On the contrary, a yarn weight classification of 4 and above refers to heavier and bulkier yarn, and is ideal for use in making chunky items such as rugs, shawls or blankets.

It is important not to mistake a yarn’s weight classification with its actual weight, as this rating does not really refer to how much a yarn actually weighs. In fact, the amount of yarn or total weight of you need to complete a specific project is largely dependent upon the size you want your rug to be or how big you want your cozy sweater to be.

One More Helpful Tip for Beginners

If you’re new to crocheting, it is important that you take some time to read the yarn labels found on the different yarns available on the market. The information found on these labels is very helpful in selecting the type of yarn to buy and number of skeins you need for whatever project you want to embark. It usually includes information such as the yarn’s fiber content and its yarn weight classification, as well as home laundering instructions, so you can preserve your handmade creations much better.

Having basic knowledge of what yarn works best for what project goes a long way in ensuring that you’ll be happy with your finished products. If, however, you want to work with projects like doilies and lace tablecloths right at the get go, don’t let that stop you from using crochet thread at all. However, just be mindful of the fact that it’s not the easiest material to work with, especially for beginners. As such, if you do have the flexibility on what projects to choose first, it is best to start with those that will make use of yarn, as it is a much more versatile material to work with for you.

The good news about crocheting is that it’s a flexible art form. You can practically use any kind of fabric from cotton and wool to coir and jute. Just be mindful not to buy yarn that is too inexpensive or makes you itchy. This doesn’t mean that you should buy the most expensive yarn available in store. It only serves as a reminder for you that paying for decent quality yarn is the best way to ensure that your crocheted items will last over time. If all else fails, you can always go to your local arts & crafts store and ask the helpful staff about where to start!