Choosing the right yarn for your crochet project

by Laura Eccleston

05 Apr 2021

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Choosing the right yarn for your crochet project
If you're new to crochet and yarn in general then knowing which yarns are best for your projects can be a daunting task, and picking the wrong yarn as a beginner crocheter can mean the difference between finding a new passion and giving up before you've even finished your first project. So, today I want to break down my suggestions for the best yarn fibres to choose for certain projects, whether you are a beginner or not.

Amigurumi and Toys
Most toys will be made for a child or pet so it can be a good idea to choose a natural fibre that washes well, such as cotton or bamboo. The added benefit to using cotton or bamboo fibres too is that they don't pill. What this means is that they won't look fuzzy, especially after they have been washed. Using cotton is also a really good beginner fibre in general because you will be able to see your stitches much more clearly compared to say using wool or acrylic.

Blankets and Afghans
The key to a good blanket has to be it's warmth and coziness does it not? You want to be able to snuggle down and keep warm under your own creations so I find using acrylic yarn or wool are really good options. Particularly acrylic for baby blankets as they will wash much more easily than wool, which may shrink. Some alternative options though if you want to avoid your blanket becoming fuzzy over time is polyester yarn as polyester is a soft and smooth material that has many of the same properties as cotton.

Clothes and Apparel
For clothes and other fashion items you can choose any material in my opinion depending on how easily you want to wash it or to be able to see the stitches. For example, baby clothes could be made with cotton for its breathability or acrylic for its warmth and ease of wash. For adults, wool can be wonderful as a warm, breathable and natural material but of course it can be expensive, so you will need to weigh up your choices depending on your ability level, budget and end requirements. 

Socks
I've placed socks in its own category because I feel the best materials for socks is wool, but acrylic or cotton are good alternatives too. You cannot beat a lovely warm pair of woolen socks, but acrylic can be a good, cheaper alternative. I also recommend using yarns that contain nylon because it will increase the durability of your socks over time, however it can make the yarn a little less soft and more scratchy. So for me, wool is the best!

So here is my break-down..

Acrylic
Benefits: Easy to wash, inexpensive, good for babies, cozy
Negatives: Man-made fibre, can become fuzzy over time, can feel cheap if not chosen carefully

Cotton
Benefits: Easy to wash, durable, breathable, natural fibre, non fuzzy
Negatives: Can loose its softness after many washes, not as cozy

Wool
Benefits: Natural fibre, breathable, fire resistant, soft and cozy, long-lasting
Negatives: Can be itchy, expensive, can shrink so hand-wash only, can become fuzzy over time

Other fibres to consider
Alpaca: expensive but super soft, has all the benefits of wool, but much less irritable on the skin
Bamboo: a wonderful natural fibre, softer than cotton but with all the same benefits

I hope you find this article helpful! Let me know your favourite materials and why over on my Instagram channel at instagram.com/happyberrycrochet


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