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How a yarn’s characteristics influence the look of a knitted pattern

by Luke Gilligan

After the cabled sections, I worked the ribbing again and then bound off. This is where I get worried, with any pattern I knit.

I have always found that some yarns have no give or stretch to them, and so when you bind off, it’s much tighter and smaller than the cast on. To fix this, I would usually go up multiple needle sizes and then bind off. Well, when doing this, I found that I shouldn’t have been worried about it being tight, because Wisdom Yarns Angora Lace has so much ease in it!

When I started to bind off, the bind off was so large that it was probably double the circumference of the initial cast on. I ripped back and bound off again using the needle size called for in the pattern, and it was perfect. This was shocking to me because I have found that yarns that aren’t superwash are stiff and do not stretch that much!

Again, Angora Lace yarn would be perfect for a sweater or fitted garment because it will have built-in ease, but also fit your body well!

Knitting the Syrah Cowl in the colorway Spice Tree, Wisdom Yarns Angora Lace. The knitter is starting the final ribbing and is about to bind off.

After finishing both the cowls, I wanted to talk about the differences I noticed with the two different colorways. As mentioned before, variegated yarns can change what is highlighted in stitch patterns, just because of how the colors work up. With this pattern, I wanted to demonstrate that for you!

I knit the cowl with the original color, Merlot, which is a rich tonal color, but I also knit one in Spice Tree, which is a  variegated colorway. You’ll notice that the cables in the Merlot cowl, are highly defined and the staghorn design is quite prominent. I love the look of this, but I also love how the variegated yarn changed the look of the stitch pattern a little bit.

You can see that using the variegated Spice Tree yarn, the small cables that make up the staghorn design are more prominent and stand out more, as if sectioned off. The colors define and highlight different parts of the cable as it’s worked up, and each part is unique but changes slightly as the variegation and striping continue. If you look at the gauge swatch, the variegation is quite different and therefore changes the cable definition slightly. This is due to the fact that the gauge swatch is worked flat with fewer stitches and therefore the striping is not as spread out, as it is with the actual cowl.

How the striping of the variegated Spice Tree colorway changes when knitting cables.

Stripes in the colorway Spice Tree are much thicker when knitting flat and less stitches on the needle.

Again, this just demonstrates how yarn can change a pattern completely! I love how both came out and I hope it shows you that, if you step out of your comfort zone and change a pattern slightly by changing the yarn, you can have amazing results!

Tomorrow, I’ll go into more detail about Wisdom Yarns Angora Lace and what I thought about it!

This is part 4 of 5 in this series.
Go back to part 3: Why working the cables on the Syrah Cowl in Angora Lace is so yummy!

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