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Q & A: How Much Yarn Do I Need?

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Q & A: How Much Yarn Do I Need?

Q – I want to knit a simple baby blanket in worsted weight yarn. How much yarn will I need?

A – While the amount of yarn will depend on your gauge, yarn choice, the stitch pattern you select, and the size of your project, we do have a great chart that has estimates for many common projects. The chart is divided into knit and crochet (which use different yarn amounts!), various types of garments, sizes, and yarns by weight. To find the weight of your yarn, check its label, or look at the list towards the bottom of the page.

For a 20″ x 30″ baby afghan, you will need around 1000 yards of worsted weight yarn. What does that mean in terms of the number of balls or skeins you need? To find out how many skeins/balls/cones to purchase, divide the total yardage needed by the chosen yarn’s amount per skein/ball/cone. Be sure to round up to the nearest whole skein/ball/cone. For instance, if you were to use the Nature’s Choice Organic Cotton, you would want to divide 1000 yards needed total by the 103 yards per ball of Nature’s Choice, for approximately 10 balls.

This chart really is a great reference — you may even want to bookmark it or print out a PDF of it to keep handy!

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  • Hi I am new to crochet and love the look of your yarns however I live in the uk do you have a list of stockists over here as postage is so expensive from usa to uk thanks

    Zontee says: Hi Carol, please contact Banyan Tree Yarns, a Lion Brand distributor in the UK.

  • How much cotton yarn does it take to make a dishcloth 8 by 8 using a # 7 knitting needle

    • Hi Donna, since we don’t know which yarn you’re using or how tightly or loosely you’re knitting, it’s hard to say.

      However, you can easily figure this out for yourself: Make one dishcloth; weigh it (a food scale or postage scale will do nicely). Look at your yarn’s ball band or tag (it should have the total weight of the yarn in ounces and/or grams). Divide the total weight of the yarn–the number of ounces (or grams)–by the number of yards (or meters) to figure out how much each yard or meter weighs. Now take the weight of your dishcloth and divide it by how much each yard weighs to figure out how many yards you need. Now you know how many yards should be in each ball.

      For instance, if my dishcloth weighs 4 ounces and I have a 12 ounce cone of yarn with 240 yards, then I know that each yard weighs 0.05 ounces. If my dishcloth weighs 4 ounces, then I know that I need 80 yards (4 ounces divided by 0.05) for a dishcloth. Hope that helps!

  •  I need this answer because I brought a cone of cotton yarn and would like to wind it into balls to carry to the knitting the knitting group.  Thank you for any extra time for effort on my behalf.

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