Today I’m pausing this project to consider the joys of working with chunky, bulky, and super bulky yarn. If knitting with big yarn and big needles isn’t something you usually do, I’d like to push you out of your comfort zone, and into the super cushy zone.
I don’t know about you, but I often get trapped in an endless loop (pun intended) of using lightweight yarns with complicated patterns. That’s been my habit for the past few months. So, when KNITmuch offered me the opportunity to work with a super bulky yarn I was relieved! I’d been feeling when knitting lightweight yarns like I was knitting all the time and getting nowhere. Be Wool was such a nice change, and I knew I could finish an entire rug on a weekend. Yeah, you heard me right! One weekend – project done even with an added garter stitch border. The Spiral Rug reminded me why it’s fun to dive into the world of big yarn from time to time.
What is a bulky yarn exactly?
I often get asked questions about yarn weights and sizes. Bulky weight yarn isn’t as common as some of the medium weight yarns like worsted or aran. Just in case you didn’t know what a bulky, super bulky, or jumbo weight yarn is, here some descriptions:
This information is from the Craft Yarn Council’s Standard Yarn Weight System.
Bulky (Chunky) Yarn
The term chunky or bulky is used to describe a #5 size yarn. It’s about the size of two strands of light worsted weight (#3) held together. Using the recommended needle size US 9 -11 [5.5-8mm] – it has a gauge of 12 to 15 stitches to knit 4”.
Using the recommended needle size US 11-17 [5.5-8mm] it has a gauge of 7 to 11 stitches to knit 4”. Be Wool, the yarn for the Spiral Rug pattern is super bulky.
This is the largest yarn available and is usually only knit into blankets. You can see some in the foreground of the photo above. It has a gauge of 6 stitches or fewer per 4” of knitting on needles size US 7 [12.5mm] and larger.
These days who has time to knit?!
These days even the simplest tasks take a lot more time and effort. Since the spring I’ve been finding my energy low, and my knitting time-limited. Enter the super bulky yarn projects! Whether it’s a chunky pair of reading socks, an oversized cowl, or a quick throw; my time is maximized with big yarn and big needles. I can get all the satisfaction of a finished project with a fraction of the time. And let me tell you with so much of my life up in the air right now it’s grounding to accomplish something.
The satisfaction of a knitting project finished, and put into use, has been comforting. When I can’t squeeze more time out of my day, I can maximize the time I have with bulky yarn projects. And I hate to mention it, but Christmas isn’t that far off. Can you see last-minute quick bulky knit gifts under the tree? Use the large size of your yarn and needles to help you destress your knitting life!
Up the coziness when you upsize your yarn
Of course, the other great benefit of working with a big yarn like Be Wool, is that any project you make will have an increased coziness factor. The super squishy warmth of bulky knits is perfect as days get cooler, and winter approaches. There’s nothing like slipping on a squishy pair of chunky knit slippers or reading socks as you cozy up under a big wool hand knit blanket. Let the softness of these large stitches cushion your life as you settle into fall and await the first snow of winter.
Well, that’s it really. If you want to maximize your knitting and create super luscious cozy knits, why not explore the world of bulky yarns. One last note: fashion trends have been towards super bulky knits. Everyone is getting cozy in bulky yarn! Now you can, too with Be Wool!
Join me and tomorrow and Friday, I’m going back to the Spiral Rug pattern to give you a few more suggestions for making this project your own. Learn about stitch marker placement, how to do a Yarn Over for this project, how to add an elegant garter stitch border and final finishing details with proper blocking. See you then!
This is part 3 of 5 in this series
Go back to part 2: Knitting the perfect invisible circular cast on