Knitting (or Crocheting) with Handspun | Ancestral Evolution | Skillshare
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6 Lessons (27m)
    • 1. Introduction

    • 2. Project and Materials

    • 3. How to Measure Yardage

    • 4. How to Measure Yarn Weight

    • 5. Finding a Pattern for Your Yarn

    • 6. Tips, Tricks, and Final Thoughts

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About This Class

Hi there, and welcome to Knitting with Handspun! In this class, we'll be talking about how to measure and quantify your handspun yarn so that you can knit (or crochet) a project with it. When you're spinning your own yarn, it doesn't come with a handy label telling you its weight, yardage, and recommended needle (or hook) size. So how in the world are you actually supposed to knit or crochet a project with it? This class will teach you how to create your own yarn "label" so you can make a project with it. Specifically we'll be talking about:

  • How to measure yardage
  • How to measure yarn weight
  • How different methods of finishing your yarn can affect the above measurements
  • How to find a pattern for your yarn using the above information

For this class, I recommend you have a basic working knowledge of yarn and needle/hook sizes. It is also helpful to be able to read a knitting or crochet pattern.

You do NOT have to be a spinner to get something valuable out of this class!

I hope you join me on this next episode of fiber adventures. Enjoy the class!

Music Credit: "Glen Canyon" by Dan Lebowitz

Meet Your Teacher

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Ancestral Evolution

Traditional skills for the modern world


Hello, we are Eliza and Dave! Join us on our adventures with homesteading, the ketogenic diet, and science of natural living. We run a small farm with a flock of fiber animals made up of several different kinds of sheep and a guard llama named "Banjo." We look forward to sharing what we've learned along the way with the Skillshare community. Whether you are thinking about starting a small farm or just embarking on a journey into fiber, we hope to have something for you!

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1. Introduction: Hi there. I'm ELISA with ancestral evolution. I've been knitting and spinning since I was little, and now my husband and I run a small farm and have a lot of fiber. We've got a couple of different kinds of sheep and the guard llama. Today we're gonna talk about how to meet with hands in particular. We're gonna talk about how to measure your hands fund so that you can make a project with whether that be getting crushing, leaving at center when you spend your own yard. It doesn't come with a handy label telling you how many yards is in it, what weight it is and the recommended needle size. So together we're gonna figure that out from our hands. This class is for anyone who wants to learn how to quantify yarn so that you can use either cans fun or a mystery skein or any skein. Basically, that does not have a like So I hope you join me when you buy commercial yard. It almost always comes with the label. For instance, this label tells us that this yarn is made out of Super Wash Marino and nylon. It tells us its weight. So with 100 grams and 463 yards. And it also tells us that it's fingering. Wait, and it has a suggested needle size to use with it. So looking at this label, I have a pretty good idea of what to do with this yarn and what kind of a pattern I might make. What kind of needles to start with, etcetera. This yarn is some hands fund. It's took off the wheel. This does not have any kind of label on it. So if I were just looking at this, it might be kind of tricky to figure out what kind of meeting or per saying pattern I could make with this yard. So together we're going to go through the process of basically creating our own label, four hands fund yard. Or, if you don't have hand spun a mystery skein in your staff for work. For this as well. In this class, you're gonna learn how to measure the length of yarn and how much yardage is in a skein of yarn. You're gonna learn how to measure the weight of yarn or kind of the thickness, the diameter of the arm and we're gonna use these measurements to find a pattern that you can make with your yard. We're also going to talk about some tips and tricks when working with hand spun yarn, as opposed to commercial yard in terms of a pattern, So let's get started. 2. Project and Materials: your assignment for this class is to create your own label for a skein of yarn. It could be a skein of hand spun that use Find yourself. It could be a skin of hands fund that someone else fund. It could be a mystery skein of yarn in your stash. The point is to go through the process of measuring the yarn so that you could do something with it. In the future, please post a picture of your yard and also a picture of your yarn label. And if you do make something out of it or you find a pattern that you like, just tell me a little bit about what you're gonna make or if you have a picture of your finished product, Great. So you're gonna need a couple of materials before we get started. At the very least, you're gonna need first and foremost some Mr Yarn or Hands fund. You're going to need a measuring tape. A ruler or yard state could work, but I think a measuring tape is a little bit easier to use for this. And you're also gonna need a pencil or a rasp range tool, and I'll show you how to make your own if you don't have one. A needy naughty is nice, but it is not required. I'm gonna show you a way to measure the aren't within any Nani and a way to measure the yard without so All right, so let's get started. 3. How to Measure Yardage: So one way to estimate the yardage in your yard is to use what's called in any naughty unity. 90 basically is a central pole here, with two arms that stick out perpendicular to each other. This one comes apart like so, and I just put it back together when I want to use it. Most in United's come in specified sizes. For instance, a one yard, any naughty or two yard getting naughty. This one is a two yard many naughty, which means that when I wrap my yarn around at once, that is about two yards. So this gives us a way to estimate are yardage in our yard and I'll show you how to wrap it . Specifically, if you don't have any money, you can actually make your own out of some pieces of PVC pipe. You're just gonna need a longer piece for the center and two smaller pieces for the outside and some connectors, but that works really well as well with us. But that works really well to you. All right. To use your 99 1st you're gonna tie your yard onto one of the arms. You're going to want to make a loose, not because you're gonna need to undo this a little bit. All right, Now you're gonna hold the arm with the yarn on it, facing you, and then you're gonna take your yarn, you're gonna loop it over the right hand side, then underneath the bottom leg there and then over the left hand side and then back to where you started and that is one round. So this would be approximately two yards worth of yard. So we're just going to keep doing this and we're going to count how many times we loop are you aren't around the nitty that's one. So this wrapped around my 19 i 24 times, so times two yards would be approximately 48 yards. Now, one thing to know is when you're using an any naughty, you really should not be pulling it very tight at all. Now I know that I have a tendency to pull tighter than I should, And therefore, when I do to compensate for that is after I get my knitting Nani measurement of yardage, I usually subtract maybe three or four yards from it so that I have a more accurate idea of how much yardage I have in terms of a pattern. Um, you always want Underestimate how much you are you have rather than overestimate. And anyone who has played the yarn chicken can attest to that. So I've got the end here, and I'm just going Teoh make a loose little's not here. And then you're gonna untie, then were you tied your yard on and then just high a little foot, loose lipped. That's I to And then we're gonna take it off in any now you're just gonna slip it off one length, and there are other legs here. You here's our scheme. So next I'm gonna show you how to estimate yardage without using. You're just gonna need your skin of the arm, hand a tape measure and calculates. All right, so for this method, you're just gonna let your skein down on a surface either floor or a table. That's big enough and you want to stretch it out kind of as far as it will go in this release the tension. You're gonna take your tape measure and you're gonna measure from one and to the other end kind of from the tip of the skein of yarn to you. The other tip. I'm getting about 32 inches there. Now. What you're gonna do is you're gonna take that measurement and you're gonna times it by two because you have a circle here. So you have two sides, so you're gonna do 32 times to you. So 64 and then you are going to multiply that by however many strands you have here. So you're gonna go through and you're gonna count your strands if you haven't already on the 1990. And I know because I just used in any naughty on this that there are 24 strands. So we're going Teoh, take 64 times 24 then divide that by 36 and that will give us our approximate yardage. So with this method, I got about 42.6 yards. With the nitty Nani method, I got about 48 yards. Now, as you can see, this yarn is not pulled tight at all. In fact, I can stretch it significantly more. Um, your measurement on an 80 90 is always going to be more than by this method. And so for that reason, I kind of Take a happy medium. I would probably put about 44 yards on a label for this yard based on that. So I subtracted about four yards from my nitty naughty calculation, and that's a little bit more than when I got with this calculation. So So you don't try it out. How many yards of your do you have? 4. How to Measure Yarn Weight: So now that we know how many yards are skein of yarn has we're going to figure out what weight of yarn it is. And to do that, you're gonna need either arrests per inch tool or a pencil. I have made my own rats per inch tool out of a pencil, and basically I put a glued a metal washer to one end. And then I've made a mark on the pencil at one each. Before I get any further, let me tell you a little bit about this. Your so this is some hand spun yarn that I spun. It is a two ply arm, and it is made up of about 45% south down and 45% lamb border Leicester police. And in the last 10% is just a little bit of red bamboo, which you can kind of see peeking through here. I really like adding just a smidge of bamboo to yarns because it adds a little bit of color and also a little bit of shine and some softness to it. So So I like doing that. All right, So to calculate your wraps per inch, you're gonna take your pencil. If you don't have a washer on yours, you can just make a mark and then make another mark at about one inch on your pencil with a Sharpie or something like that. So what you're gonna do is you're gonna take here pencil, and you're just gonna hold your rearm against your pencil like so. And then we're gonna take this end, and we're gonna wrap it around the pencil. You don't want to wrap this too tight, and we're just gonna kind of squish it down, But you don't want to squish it down too much, too. All right, so we're going to wrap it until we get to one inch here and then we're gonna count how many wraps we have. So you burn Teoh three or by six eight. All right, so eight ramps. So write down your wraps per inch. This is abbreviated WP I, and sometimes people will just use the WP ire the wraps per inch number on their yard label . But we can also use the reps fringe to get an official wait for the yarn, for instance, like worsted bulky, etcetera, etcetera. So I'll show you how we can do that. So once you've measured your wraps per inch on your yarn, we're gonna Gigio on Theo Internet and go to this site here. This is put on by the crafty aren't council and they have a lot of good resource is on their page. But what we're after here is this chart here and it's gonna tell us our yarn weight based on our wraps. Prange. So the yarn that we just measured had a wraps per inch or WP i of eight. So if we go down on this side, we can see that that would make our yarn a bulky weight yard. So if, for instance, you have a wraps per inch of 10 instead, that would make your yarn a medium weight yarn Or if you were more like 20 that would make your yarn in the super fine category. So once you know, you were once you knew your weight, then we can go to this page. And this is also on the Craft Yarn council website and I will put links to both of these pages in the Project tab. But so, for instance, our yard was bulky, so this page shows us the net gauge the recommended needle sizes. So for us, we're looking at a needle size of 9 to 11 with this weight yarn. And then it also tells us the recommended hook size for if you're crushing, so okay to em there. So this is a really great great resource. Like I said, I'll put links below. So now we know what? Wait, are you harness? We know how much yardage we have, and we know roughly what kind of needle or hook size we're going to be working with. So once we've done that, it's time to head over to revelry. One other note. When you see these ranges from 9 to 11 when you're working with hand spun, I would tend to go with the higher one just because hand spun tends to be a little bit more dense than your commercial yarn. So for me, with this yarn measurement, I probably would go with the size 11 um, to work with it to start and then go from there 5. Finding a Pattern for Your Yarn: So this is Raval re. And for those of you who are into fiber who don't know about revelry, I highly, highly suggest that you get an account. It's free, and it has. And it's an amazing resource in terms of patterns in just a fiber community. So, like I said, it's free. It's great. All right, So here is the home page of revelry and to find a pattern that might fit our yard, What we're gonna do is we're gonna just click the patterns tab up here and for our purposes , I'm just gonna look at free patterns. So if you look here and just click the free pattern and this will give us all the free patterns Now, as you can see, this shows up a search results of 1757 different patterns. So we're gonna need to narrow this down some. And the way that we're going to do that is by in putting our yarn measurements. So we're gonna go here on the left hand side. I'm gonna pick knitting because I'm mostly a knitter. But if your car share, you could pick crush a here, and I'm gonna go down Teoh, where it says Wait and yardage. So wait to We just figured out that the weight of our yarn was bulky, so I'm going to click the bulky tab there, and it's refine my search results. So all of the patterns now are using bulky yarn, and I had less than 150 yards, so I'm going to click the 0 to 150 yards under the yardage tab. All right, so that has further is refined our results here. Now the other thing to think about when you are looking for patterns is the composition of your yarn. What kind of fiber is in your yarn and what kind of garment or item do you think it would be good for? For instance, a really soft merino might make a great cowl, a more coarse wool or fiber. You might want to make, for instance, like a stuffed animal out of or some kind of outerwear that's not going to be directly against the skin. So think about your yarn and what's in your yarn when you're thinking about patterns also, so for me, I am probably going Teoh, look at accessories and I'm going to look at. So I'm gonna look at other headwear here, and I'm going to look at a headband. So this search result pulls up all the headbands now that fit our requirements of bulky yarn and less than 150 yards. Oh, the other thing that I need to put in here is our needle size. So I am going Teoh, put in E. I'm gonna put in the U. S. 10.5, and I'm going to put in the U. S. 11 in terms of needle size and see what we get. Okay, so we have some results here, and you can just go through and pick whatever you like. Instance, this is a kind of pretty one. Here's a twisted one, and this tells you your needle sizes us 10.5. Um, it's in bulky, and it tells you approximately yardage. So this uses 75 200 yards, which is more than I have, so I'm gonna go back. Unfortunately, when you have on the low side of yardage, there's not a good way to refine it in terms of the revelry Page. Let's try this one. Okay. So this one is headband here looks pretty and the sun requires about 25 yards worth of yarn , which I have plenty. Four, A bulky yarn weight. And it uses 10.5 size needles. Um, so this would be a great choice for the arm that I have. So that's just a example of something that you can go through and find. Um, once you find a pattern you like, I suggests going and go to add to library and that it will save it in your rivalry library for later. So yeah, there we go. We've learned how to measure our yardage in our yarn. We learned how to measure our wraps per inch and use that measurement to find the weight of our yarn. And we've also used those measurements to be able to find a pattern that fits those specifications. I've got a couple other pointers, so stay tuned for the last segment of this class 6. Tips, Tricks, and Final Thoughts: a couple notes and reminders before I let you loose into the world of yarn measurement. When you're working with hand spun yarn and you're picking and needle or hook size and you're you're looking at a range of different sizes, I recommend that you go for a little bit larger size in general hands. Fund your intensity a little bit more dense than your commercial yard, and so the larger needle and so the larger needle size is typically gonna work a little bit better. Um, but as always, do a swatch and see how your fabric looks before you make a final decision. That leaves me to my next point abouts watching with hand spun yarn, especially, is really important that you do some kind of us watch, the larger the better. I've heard people recommend at least six inches for hand spun yarn. Um, I am guilty as charged. I do not always do a six inch swatch, but I always do some kind of us watch. This gives you an idea of what the fabric is gonna look like, and I also recommend you to your swatch in the pattern that you are going to be making, um, technically, years watch is also supposed to be blocked, so that means make your swatch, then get it wet, then late, flat to dry and then measure it. Don't do it straight off. The other thing I wanted to talk a little bit about is yard finishing and how the process of blocking yarn itself can affect some of these measurements a little bit. So, firstly, like blocking and knitting or crocheting project, it is really important to block your yard, and this really helps A with the appearance of the yarn and be it helps even out the twist and make the yarn more even. I highly highly recommend that you block your yard at the very minimum. Just get after you spin your yarn and you take it off your wheel. Get it wet so could in some water for maybe 10 or 15 minutes with a drop of dish soap been taken out and just hanging up to dry and after it's dry, then that will also give you an idea of if your yarn is balanced or not. Some other ways. You can finish your yarn involved. After you soak it, you can take it and you can back it. And, uh, I recommend doing the whacking when you want your yard to kind of fluff out a little bit, I use it for yarn that I make out of down breeds, for instance, like Shetland or south down. I will make sure that I whack that yard because it kind of flips it and gives it a little bit more body quacking. Your ER is going Teoh, decrease your rats per inch number just slightly because your yarn is gonna be a little bit fluffy or in less dense. The other method that can affect your wraps per inch a little bit. And you're, um, length a little bit is if you choose to do something called fooling your yard. Um, this is done, especially with singles, that you want to stay singles, and it's essentially kind of felt ing the yarn together so it stays as a strand. This can shorten your yardage a little bit, and it can also increase your aspirin. So if you measure your yarn before you finish it, keep that in mind. Those measurements maybe a little bit off and you may want to measure it again after your yarn is finished. All right, So I hope this class is really helpful to you in figuring out how to quantify your hands fund yard so that you can it or per se with it. I'd love to see what you come up with and what your yard is. Put a picture below in the projects of your yard and your yard label and tell me what you're gonna do with it. Have fun.