Wednesday, September 25, 2013

30 Day Sweater Challenge - A Simple Way to Estimate Yarn Requirements

A Simple Way to Estimate Yarn Requirements

Have you ever found an AMAZING yarn and decided to make a sweater out of it only to sit and ponder if you’ll have enough yardage then eventually decide not to get it because you just don’t know? If you have, I can relate. Today I am going to share with you a few simple ways to estimate the amount of yarn you’ll need for your next sweater project! Be glad, the days of the unknown yardage requirements are over!

Realistically speaking I don’t know of any simple ways to estimate yarn requirements, they all involve a good deal of math. However I do have some suggestions for methods that I use all the time to figure out how much yarn I’ll need to make a sweater.

The first resource I want to introduce you to is the yardage calculator over at Jimmy Bean’s Wool. Just head over to the Jimmy Beans WoolCalculator  and choose what kind of project, what size and the weight of the yarn you’ll be using. Then it does all the math you would need to do - instantly! Brilliant! This seriously makes things so easy! It is certainly worth taking a look at, especially if you do a lot of your yarn shopping online and need a quick place to find your necessary yardage. Another great way to use this tool is if you tend to use one weight of yarn fairly often, just take a minute and go calculate the yardage for the types of projects you like to knit. Take the numbers you come up with, write them down in your phone or on a piece of paper and put it in your purse or wallet so it is there when you need it.

Another great estimating tool I like to use is the Yarn Estimator App (for those of you will smartphones). This app is $.99 but believe me, it is a dollar well spent. The Yarn Estimator app calculates how much yarn you’ll need for knitting (and crochet) projects and it also has the ability to calculate how much yarn actually went into your finished project and how much is left over. That may seem like a trivial detail but if you know exactly how much yarn you have left it is easier to use it for small “stash busting” projects.

The last method I use for estimating yardage is finding a pattern that is similar to the project I plan on making in a yarn like the one I’m interested in and get a general idea from that pattern for about how much yardage I’ll need for my size.

If you’d like to learn more about estimating yardage and all of the other details that go into preparing to knit a sweater, download our free Sweater Planning Guide. This guide covers everything from choosing a suitable yarn to getting gauge and accurate body measurements. And did I mention that it’s free?!

This guest post is part of the 30 Day Sweater Challenge promo tour. Join us this October as we help 5,000 knitters around the world knit a sweater they’ll love, in 30 days. To sign up just visit and download your free sweater planning guide. It will help you get started on the right track! See you in October!

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