Most of the time, when I make a project, I go down to my LYS, and just pick up some yarn. A couple of times, I have bought "a sweater's worth of yarn" online, and then found a project. But that is not something I can do now. I need to think, and plan, and then my loads of yarn appropriately. Welcome to the Yarn-Offs!
- Requisites for the yarn:
- - no animal hair.
- - no animal hair.
- Ideally acrylic, or an acrylic blend, for durability and ease and care.
- - wide range of colours.
- With my current colour-scheme, I would need: red, a more different red, orange, yellow, green, light blue, dark blue, purple, pink, black (outlines and names) and grey (most likely background colour).
- - easily available.
- Ideally with some certainty that it's not going to disappear of the market (I haven decided yet whether to buy it all at once or in stages).
- - not ridiculously expensive.
- While my brother has both his kidneys if I need one in the future, I shouldn't just throw away mine.
I had a perfect yarn picked for it, Rowan All Seasons Cotton. I love this yarn. However, while the 2009 colours will fit my blanket just perfectly, the 2010 colours are very few, and not in the right ranges. I could wait until next year to see if they change them again, but I won't hold my breath for them. I shall play a sad tune, and move on to current yarns.
I scouted the local yarn shops, and brought home 4 candidates for my yarn. In the order I selected them, I bring you my candidates. All the yarns are satisfactory, but have extra pros and cons.
Candidate number 1
Rico Kids Classic Aran
50-50 acrylic poliamide, aran weight, 115 m/ball
Pros: has most of the colours I need, acrylic blend, machine wash & dry, preferred thickness
Cons: doesn't have all the colours
Candidate number 2
Rowan Handknit Cotton (rav)
100 cotton, worsted weight, 85 m/ball
Pros: has all the colours
Cons: I'm a bit weary or using pure cotton for a blanket, not a lot of yardage per ball
Candidate number 3
King Cole Bamboo Cotton (rav)
50-50 bamboo cotton, dk weight, 230 m/ball
Pros: has most of the colours I need, it's a blend
Cons: a bit too splitty and thin, doesn't have all the colours, delicate machine wash
Candidate number 4
Hayfield/Sidar Bonus DK (rav)
100 acrylic, dk weight, 280 m/ball
Pros: has all the colours, immense yardage
Cons: some of the colorus I need are so bright as to be radioactive, a bit thinner than wanted
Over the next couple of weeks/months, I shall be swatching with each of the yarns. Testing the yarn for such a big project is important. This will also allow me to decide which pattern to use for the squares, as well as know how much yarn I will need for each one, helping me determine how much yarn to buy. My initial preferences are towards Rico and Hayfield, but I won't really know until I work with and wash all the yarns.
Will keep you posted with some swatches soon!