We live in a golden age of fibers with a sometimes overwhelming number of yarns to choose from.
In Part 1 of this class, we’ll take a closer look at fibers and yarn with the ultimate goal of deeper understanding and making better, more informed choices for our knitting projects. We will discuss the properties and sources of both animal and plant fibers, then talk about the processing that goes into making these fibers into specific types of yarns. We will discuss the differences between worsted and woolen yarns and how plying affects yarn behavior by looking at examples of knit/purl textures, lace, cables and colorwork in a wide variety of yarns to see how fiber and yarn structure affect each type of fabric. If you’ve ever wondered why a yarn pills, why it grows when you wear it, why it feels light or heavy, or wondered what yarn would be best for a cable or lace pattern, this is the class for you.
Once we have a foundation for how yarns work as a function of their fiber content and structure, in Part 2 we will look at how to match a yarn with a project to achieve the best results and discuss how using alternative yarns may change those results. We will look closely at everything that needs to be considered when substituting a yarn, including calculating yardage and understanding grist, fiber and spinning properties, and ply structure. We will learn about how different fibers wash and wear and discuss what fiber blends achieve what results, in order to choose a yarn for a specific purpose, whether you want to make a heavenly cowl or a hard-wearing sweater. The aim of this class is to help you make better, more informed decisions to get the result you want from your projects. This class is lecture/discussion-based; we will not be knitting in class.
Technique Requirements: knit/purl, cast on/bind off, increase/decrease, have knit a few accessories