View Full Version : Best Practice Yarn
01-04-2006, 07:29 PM
I'm a new Knitter and was curious what the BEST and cheapest yarn to learn off of was (we pretty much just have Michaels here). Right now I've been using Red Heart Super Saver Yarn from Michaels, 100% arcylic. I hate it! It seems to come undone easily as I knit. I do notice, have no idea why, that the multicolor Red Heart seems to work better than the solids. I also like it because I can see my stitches better! :happydance:
Also, I started out with metal needles and kept losing my stitches. I moved to plastic ones and they don't slip off, but it can stick to the needle. Any tips?
01-04-2006, 07:57 PM
stick with red heart - when you are just learning you don't want to waste big bucks on the nice stuff
i make all people who want to learn start with red heart
01-04-2006, 08:06 PM
Alexis, first of all- welcome!! How wonderful that you are here and learning to knit!! When I was first learning, I used bamboo needles. Metal is definitely slippery- it took some getting used to, and there is no way I would have been able to use them in the beginning. I'd say use whatever you want for practice yarn- acrylic is cheaper, but don't limit yourself just because you are a "beginniner". Use what makes you feel good and what feels good when you knit. I used super cheapo acrylic for my first sweater, because I doubted my ability to do it, and didn't want to "waste" the money on good yarn if I couldn't do a good job. Now, I think I underestimated myself, and wish I had used nicer yarn- at least a wool/acrylic blend.
Jan in CA
01-04-2006, 08:13 PM
Used Red Heart when I was learning, too. :shifty: ;)
01-04-2006, 08:18 PM
i don't even wanna talk about what i used when i first started....sheesh. the yarn store didn't have prices on the yarn, that i could see anyway, so i picked what was pretty not knowing how expensive yarn could be.
red heart it ain't.....sheesh. yeah if i recall correctly that was a $20 hank of yarn. beautiful but....
i gained my yarn snobbery early in my career i guess.
i am knititng an afghan (this would be afghan number 4 that i have started!) on TLC baby and it isn't upsetting me at all! :) nice and soft and the color is perdy (lime green anyone?)
pick what you like and can afford. Lion is a fun brand to start with because many of the yarns aren't terribly expensive but also not terribly cheap. I liked the thick n quick stuff cuz it was bright and chunky and knit pretty. some of their yarns are definitely not worth the price in my book but the thick n quicks are.
01-04-2006, 09:10 PM
Hi Alexis :waving: I started on Red Heart, too. In fact, I still have skeins hanging around, and I use them to test patterns or different stitch techniques. Also, early on, I bought Lion Brand Homespun. Stay away from that. Talk about splitting stitches; it was a nightmare for me. I'm wondering if yarn from Paton's would be a better alternative. I think it's reasonably priced, but I've never knit with it, so I don't know how it holds up. Oh...how about ordering Wool of the Andes from KnitPicks? You can't beat the price, and you'll find lots of good reviews of it here on the forum. On the needles, try Susan Bates Quicksilver's. Not as grippy as plastic or wood, but not as slick as metal, IMHO. Good luck to you!
01-04-2006, 09:11 PM
IMO (and it is an opinion - no hard fast proof :D ) I think that knitting with quality yarn is easier to learn with. I'm not talking $20 a hand (Brendajo) but something nice, that feels good and looks nice knit. Working with cheap yarn can be discouraging. It doesn't feel nice and can be difficult to work with so you get discouraged. Work with something soft and yummy and you will be hooked. Or go buy $20 a hank yarn :D
01-04-2006, 09:15 PM
let me point out that i haven't bought a hank that is that expensive since then!! :shock:
though there have been a few reeeeeeeeeeally pretty hanks that have considered spending lotsa money on when i got gift money. but i am a little too cheap and always find myself remembering how much lambs pride i can buy with that money! :rofling:
01-05-2006, 12:18 AM
I used Red Heart to do simple kids scarves because they'll need washing...and once upon a time, I didn't even KNOW there were 25 gram hanks of yarn that could cost over $30.00!! Sheesh! But since I've been here on this forum, I've found some great little online places to get good yarn nearly as cheap as Red Heart. If you have a friend order with you, you can split the shipping cost.
I like to knit socks. :D I'd heard about Lorna's Laces yarn ever since I came to KH.com, so finally I ordered the least expensive of that--Shepherd's Socks--for my dil's Christmas socks. It cost me 15 bucks for enough to knit 1 pair of socks!! ( I've never even BOUGHT a pair for that much!!) Some of it was MORE expensive than that...and I wanted to try it--but I just can't afford it. DIl's first pair had been out of some cheaper--maybe it was Kroy--and she has really seen the difference in the way the Lorna's Laces feels!! And so did I when I used it--it was a pleasure to knit with. SO I haunt the online stores for where I can get the yarns I like for the least amount!! I check the Herrschners.com site often...they have a weekly sale and some of the least expensive yarns are there and then some of the more expensive too. I try to check other blogs to see if anyone's mentioning a sale!! Believe me--I rarely buy anything at full price!! one day, maybe I'll afford to---but I doubt it!! :oops:
01-05-2006, 01:44 AM
Caron makes a cheapo acrylic called Simply Soft that is actually soft. Red Heart also has a brand called TLC that is soft and its cheapo. Sometimes Micheals will carry some cheapo acrylics that are soft. Maybe some of the baby yarns? Yeah stay away, faaaar away from homespun. And WOTA from KP is only $1.79 a skein! Real wool! Click on a link from inside KH to KP and it helps this site too. Welcome and good luck :thumbsup:
01-05-2006, 09:38 AM
When I first started knitting, I picked up a couple skeins of Red Heart and some of Wal-Mart's cheap acrylic, Mainstays. If you don't like Red Heart, but want to stick to a cheap acrylic for learning purposes, I recommend the Mainstays. It's actually pretty soft for a cheap acrylic, in my opinion. I also recommend Caron's Simply Soft.
01-05-2006, 09:51 AM
I like Wool Ease from Lion Brand-I think you can get it at Michaels, and it has 20% wool and 80% acrylic (except for the color wheat), and its not much more than Red Heart. It feels much nicer to work with too, I really like it. Ok I *love* the expensive stuff, lol. But I can't afford it, so, Wool Ease is a decent compromise. And I think it's easy to work with, so good for a beginner!
I second the vote for bamboo needles too! It's slower, but its also a lot harder to lose stitches.
Good luck, and welcome!