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6 tips for knitting easily with jumbo yarn and large needles

 

It’s so important to know the properties and benefits of a yarn you’ve never knit with, before you try it for the first time. I hope yesterday’s overview gave you a good idea of what to expect from the very soft and cuddly Couture Jazz yarn!

Couture Jazz requires some special equipment; more specifically, knitting needle sizes. Most interchangeable needle sets only go up to a US 11 [8mm] or 13 [9mm]. With Couture Jazz you’re going to need a US 17 [12mm] or just bring out the big boys, US 50 [25mm].

These would be the vampire hunting needles.
These would be the vampire hunting needles.

 

The US 50 [25mm] knitting needles are, as my husband has deemed them, my vampire hunting needles. When I opened up Couture Jazz, I thought I had a couple pairs of fairly sizable needles, but I still had to go on an adventure to find the needles.

TIP 1 There are straight and circular needles in these sizes, I would highly suggest circular though. It spreads the weight of your yarn across both needles rather than one at a time.

You can see how the weight distributes evenly through both arms with circular needles.
You can see how the weight distributes evenly through both arms with circular needles.

 

The beauty with being able to spread out the weight of all those stitches on circular needles is your hands do not get as tired. That’s right, they don’t get as tired. This is a great opportunity to listen to your body and what it’s telling you.

TIP 2

Knitting with needles this large, takes some dexterity. If you find your hands get sore, give them a rest, and don’t knit for too long at a time. Taking frequent breaks is the idea. Anything you’ll knit with Couture Jazz yarn will knit up very quickly anyway.

As with any brushed yarn, large or small, the texture is so very soft.
As with any brushed yarn, large or small, the texture is so very soft.

 

The benefit of knitting this big yarn using circular needles is it allows to get more stitches on the needle at one time. With chunky knits, it’s easy to cast on a blanket and knit one up in a couple hours.

The large gauge of the stitches looks so good on a large garment. If you’re trying to knit something very small with large yarn, it won’t look natural. The circular needles are just more versatile.

TIP 3

I found with my straight needles, I had an easier time resting the right hand needle on my thigh and just moving the left needle when I was working the yarn and knitting.

TIP 4

Another option is to use plastic needles, they are usually more comfortable than their wood counterparts because they are generally lighter.

The metal needles on the right are much lighter than the wooden ones (left), but there's something sturdy and safe feeling about those wooden needles. Like I would be able to defend myself in a vampire situation.
The metal needles on the right are much lighter than the wooden ones (left), but there’s something sturdy and safe feeling about those wooden needles. Like I would be able to defend myself in a vampire situation.

 

TIP 5

When knitting with a fingering or a worsted weight yarn, the yarn flows easily from the ball. When knitting with larger yarn, pull a few yards of yarn out in advance, it will help avoid unnecessary tugging, making the process smoother. This will also help keep the gauge.

TIP 6

If knitting for a prolonged period of time with Couture Jazz, be mindful of your gauge. Because of the large size, it will happen that hands tend to tighten around the needles, therefore possibly affecting gauge. This might not happen to everyone, but certainly something of which to be mindful.

Couture Jazz in Denim Blue, I'll give you three guesses what my favorite color is.
Couture Jazz in Denim Blue, I’ll give you three guesses what my favorite color is.

 

With these tips in mind, I hope you jump into the fray that is Couture Jazz and chunky yarn. It’s a lot of fun and you’re going to be able to knit up all the afghans and blankets you want in very little time! Join me tomorrow for more knitting fun.

 

This is part 2 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 1: The properties and benefits of Couture Jazz yarn

Go to part 3: The jumbo yarn swatch that got away from me

About Michelle Nguyen

Michelle Nguyen is founder and creative director of Stitch Please Yarns. She originally got into the fiber arts business writing about knitting at her blog Stitches be Slippin, and now, also writes for KNITmuch.com.

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