Crochet Basics: Choosing Yarn
These simple tips and yarn recommendations are aimed to help crocheters select their first yarn to use for making practice swatches when learning how to crochet. Hope you will find them useful!
The first decision that you have to make is what type of fiber you are going to work with. There are many various options to choose. You can crochet with everything. However, the three most common yarn choices for beginners are wool, cotton, and acrylic yarn. There are pros and cons to each, although I really recommend them for beginner crocheters.
Wool is an excellent choice for practicing your crochet stitches. It is a resilient fiber and is forgiving of mistakes. If you do make a mistake, most wool yarns are easy to unravel and re-use. Some people have wool allergies, which is something to be aware of, but for most people, wool yarn is a good choice for crochet.
Acrylic yarn is popular and widely available, it comes in a variety of colors, and it is usually one of the more affordable choices. The one key thing to be aware of is that some of the cheapest acrylics can be challenging to crochet with because they may split apart. This isn't common but it does happen, so if you start to crochet with acrylic and are having a tough time, try switching to a different brand of acrylic yarn or to cotton or wool yarn instead. Don't make it hard on yourself to learn to crochet.
Cotton is an inelastic fiber, which makes it slightly more of a challenge to crochet with than wool is. Some people find cotton slightly more challenging than wool, it's not all that different, and it is certainly something you can try as a beginner. If you're learning to crochet during the summer when the heat makes it unpleasant to work with wool, cotton yarn is an especially great choice because it is lighter than wool. As a rule, cotton yarn does not like to stretch. That's a good thing when sturdiness and durability matter most, so expect durability, not stretch. Many people choose cotton yarn because it's a natural fiber, and they're interested in earth-friendly crochet. That's great! But remember, not all cotton yarn is eco-friendly. If you really want to help the planet, look for the "organic cotton" label.
Tips to keep in mind
- Yarn texture: Choose a smooth yarn rather than a textured yarn. For your first several projects, avoid eyelash yarns and other textured novelty yarns, which can be frustrating to work with.
- Yarn color: Choose light yarn rather than dark; it can be challenging to see your stitches when you work with yarns in dark colors.
- Yarn price: The price of yarn can vary significantly from fiber to fiber and brand to brand. As a beginner, you may find it smart to select among the most affordable yarns so that you get the hang of the craft before investing a lot of money. That's why cotton, wool, and acrylic are top fiber choices; they tend to be the most affordable.