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kpelchat 08-02-2013 12:57 PM

beginning knitter needs help
Hello, I consider myself a beginning knitter. I really only knit stuff that is flat like blankets, scarves, etc. and only using basic stitches.

I am looking at a new project for a baby blanket but I am perplexed by all the different weights of yarn and how that correlates to size of needle.

The project is a King Charles Brocade baby blanket. It calls for DK weight baby yarn. Not sure what that means. and size 6 knitting needles. I have some Caron Simply Soft yarn that is medium #4 and suggests size 8 needles.

My question is can I use this yarn or should I get something different? If so what is DK weight baby yarn. Any suggestions would be great.


knitcindy 08-02-2013 02:32 PM

DK weight is #3 weight yarn. You could use the yarn/needles that you already have and your blanket will probably come out larger than what the pattern calls for.

I might go ahead and try this one soon!!

salmonmac 08-02-2013 04:57 PM

Hi and welcome!
Yes, knitcindy's advice is good about the weight for DK yarns and the result of using your yarn. Here's a chart that may help to clarify the different weights, too.
If the pattern is like this one, you could follow the directions for a smaller size and end up with a larger blanket that may be close to the size you want. Be sure to do a gauge swatch so you have an idea of the finished size.

kpelchat 08-02-2013 05:05 PM

Thank you both for your advise. The pattern is exactly like the one you have. Thanks for the chart also, that will be most helpful. I have been wondering about the gauge swatch. I hear about doing this but not sure what it means. Can either of you clarify this?

salmonmac 08-02-2013 05:45 PM

Doing a gauge swatch is a way of comparing the number of stitches per inch that you get with your yarn and needles to the gauge that the pattern calls for. If you're not getting the gauge called for you can adjust by changing needle size or by altering the pattern. There's a good explanation of gauge and some videos here (about two thirds of the way down the page) that may help.

GrumpyGramma 08-02-2013 06:35 PM

That's a really pretty baby blanket. What I finally got my mind wrapped around first about yarn and needle sizes is that fat yarn takes fat needles, skinny yarn takes skinny needles. What the others said is great. I'd just add that fortunately a blanket isn't as gauge-critical as a garment that needs to fit so you should be able to get close enough pretty easily and use the yarn you have. If you need to adjust the number of repeats or something, there will be help here so be sure to ask. Enjoy!

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