Knitting Help – Alternating Hand Dyed Yarns

[00:00:17] In this video we’re going to talk about Alternating
Hand-Dyed Yarns. And when I say that, I mean alternating two
different balls of the same color of yarn to prevent color pooling. And this question comes up all the time, and
I always tell people it’s just like working stripes, but I need a video on it to send
people to, and so I’m happy to answer this question. When you’re working with hand-dyed yarn, it’s
kind of normal practice to have two balls of yarn going at once and alternate every
two rows or every two rounds to break up the way the color looks, because color pooling…usually
what happens, this always happens, is you’ll have a yarn hand-dyed that has different colors
going on or different tones of the same color. You’ll be knitting along and it will be all
dispersed really nicely and then suddenly it’s a dark blob and a big light blob and
it looks really different from the rest of the work, and you can avoid that just by having
two balls of yarn going at the same time. And this video is sponsored by Knitter’s Pride. I’m using two different sets of their needles
here, but the one that we’re really going to talk about are the Nova Platina 16-inch
circulars. And I have kind of this little hat going. You can see how nice this needle set is. You have all of the sizes that you need for
most of the hat knitting that you’re going to do. It comes in this awesome case. I’m gonna give you a close-up of my needles
as you can see the nice sharp point. These are great hat-knitting needles. I swear by the 16-inch circular sets, and
so we’ll get to those in a moment and I’ll show you how those work. But first let’s take a look at…I’m gonna
demonstrate both on flat and in the round. So let’s take a look at the flat piece I have. This little bit of knitting that I have here
is the same stitch pattern used in the one-row scarf, so if you’re interested in that I’ll
give you a link here in the upper right-hand corner. And I have two balls of yarn going, and the
thing that I wanna demonstrate is how I’m working the two balls of yarn so that I end
up with a nice edge here where it looks really even and consistent. It doesn’t look all that much different from
the other side, because I’m wrapping it the same way each time. So I have the yarn ball that I’ve just finished
with, the stitch that I just worked, and what I’m going to do is take the other color from
underneath, like this. That’s the way I’m going to wrap it every
time. And when I switch back to the yellow or the
other ball of yarn, I’m gonna go from underneath and pull it forward to use it. That’s the wrapping that I do. And so you pull it from underneath. If you mess it up once it’s not gonna be that
big of a deal. But if you get it in your head the exact way
that you’re going to wrap the yarn each time, that’s how it’s done. And this pattern is, if you’re curious is
Knit two, knit through the back loop, purl one. And I happen to be using Knitter’s Pride bamboo
double pointed needles, which are my favorite double pointed needles for larger-gauge knitting. I can take this old chord that I was using
and give it a little tag if there’s some looseness and this edge will be fine. That’s how it’s done. Always reach from underneath to pull the new
color up. And when we’re looking at in the round. I have this…You know, I just cast this on
for demonstration and now it’s looking like the cutest kids hat. I think I’m gonna finish it. I know someone’s gonna ask. This is Twisted Owl Chunky, it’s merino nylon
and the color way is paisley. And the Knitter’s Pride needles that I’m using
here are the Platina set that I showed you. I’ll give you a link to more information about
the Platinas in the video description field. They have a nice, long taper and a sharp point. And you can pick the needle size you need
for any project. I’m using this chunky yarn, so I’m using a
pretty big needle size. And you pick the needle size you need and
you just attach it to the chord using the key that comes in your kit. And just a hand tightening you end up with
this amazing, smooth join. These are great needles. If you’re looking to invest in a set of 16-inch
circulars, you cannot go wrong with these Platinas. So now I have this row cuff kid’s hat that
I definitely have to finish because it’s so cute. But the point of the video is you see how
nicely the colors are distributed through there. There is no color pooling because I’m alternating
these two balls of yarn. And what I get on the inside of the hat is
this here. Just the wrap worked the same way each time,
just runs up the inside of the hat at the beginning of the round. And I’m gonna show you how I deal with that
now, how I get that nice wrap each time. You can change every round when you’re working
in the round or every two rounds. I usually change every two rounds. So I’m here at the beginning of my round I
just slipped my marker. I’m ready to use the other color of yarn and
this is how I do it every time. It’s the same way as when I’m working flat. I have the old color on top. I grab the new color from underneath and forward. And that gives me the nice little twist that
I have going on. And I work the first stitch, tighten it up,
stretch the work a little. You wanna make sure that you have nice tension
on this but it’s not, you know, bunching up. So give it a tug, but not too tight, and then
just keep knitting. Then when I finish this round I’ll work one
more round and switch back to the other color, and I’ll go from under and pull that color
up to use it the same way. So, really, you have two balls of yarn going,
but the most important thing is to always wrap the old color around the new color the
same way each time, so that carrying the two colors together and the place where you carry
the two colors together at the beginning of your row or your round doesn’t become a distraction
to the rest of the work, it’s just a tidy little thing going up in the work. Anyway, many thanks to Knitter’s Pride and
their 16-inch Nova Platina Circular set for sponsoring this video. Good luck. [00:07:06]

75 thoughts on “Knitting Help – Alternating Hand Dyed Yarns

  • What's the point in wrapping and changing? I'm not getting it. Are you saying it's because of the even sides of ur project?

  • Really interesting! Thank you for the tips! And those yarns (both for the flat piece and the hat) were so pretty and cute! ^^

  • πŸ˜β€πŸ˜β€πŸ˜β€πŸ˜β€πŸ˜β€πŸ˜πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–πŸ’–

  • What if you want the color to pool? I've seen lots of videos for "planned pooling" in crochet, but how would you do that in knitting?

  • Wonderful information as always. I'm curious why you like the 16" cord so much. What else would you use that length for?

  • Even when you say it so many times, being able to see the actual technic as it goes, makes it super didactic! Well, I learn something today!!! So thank you! <3

  • Do you alternate the same way if you are working short rows? I just knit a sweater with hand dyed yarn and the pattern called for some short rows after joining the sleeves to raise the back neck a little (bottom up raglan construction, knit body tube, knit sleeves, join then knit up to neck.). I alternated everywhere except the short rows. Looks ok but just wonder if I should have done it there too.

  • Great tutorial has always. I am wondering if you would give us your opinion on Zing Circular needles. Would you recommend them and for the best items to knit with them. I understand they are made by Knitters Pride.

  • If i am knitting a shawl with 1 100g skein of hand dyed yarn? should i split it and alternate or not? If so how should i split the skein? Thank you!

  • Staci, thanks for this clear demonstration. I was wondering two things. (1) If you are using two new balls of yarn, do you knit both strand pulled from the inside or one strand from the inside and one from the outside? (2) If you are making two balls of yarn from one new one to accommodate this technique, do you wind one from the inside of the big ball and one from the outside, or do you wind them both from one source? Thanks! I learn something from every video.

  • Oh, Staci, I'm so grateful for this video! Thank you for doing this. I was originally planning on purchasing a variegated hand dyed yarn for a shawl project, but decided against it when the shop keeper at my LYS reminded me that I should be alternating the yarn. From your video, it's clear that the technique is simple enough, but I had never done that before and felt intimidated. Instead, I decided on a tonal version of Malabringo Rios and was relieved when the project turned out (

    I do have one question. In doing this technique, what is your method for casting on? In other words, are you casting on with both yarns (long cast on technique) or are you casting on with one and then adding the other the same as you would with a new color in a stripe pattern? I'm just interested to know what you've found works the best. Thank you! πŸ™‚

  • I've been a victim of color pooling! Thanks for the video. Now I've been enlightened. (btw I bought the 16" KP nova platina interchangeables last fall after seeing them on one of your videos and love them. )

  • Love your videos! Love watching you knit (I need to learn to flick better) and love seeing the yarns. Most importantly, I learned something about my new circular needles (ie using the key) – who knew? Thanks!!!

  • I love Knitter's Pride πŸ™‚ I have interchangables in a few different materials and lengths (short vs regular)

  • I'm knitting socks – so I really don't care if they don't match or if there is color pooling – but this is great information for some larger items that I have in the works.

  • I would love for you to do a tutorial on holding the needles and yarn the way you do …it just looks so smooth and effortless…mine is so clumsy and my hands hurt!

  • This was perfect timing! I will be starting a knitted top soon with hand dyed yarn. Thank You for all of your videos I have learned so much from them!

  • thank you so much! I've been wanting you to demonstrate this for ages. Greatly appreciate you doing this video.

  • Hi Staci!
    I want to attach a scalloped piece to a flat piece. I've seen pix of 3 needle bind off but no clear video of a "join". Do you have a video?
    Thanks, Ruth Shields

  • Joan Luiz
    I am finding Portuguese knitting really easy to learn with your videos. Currently working on perfecting my tension. Perhaps a video about how to keep your tension even with Portuguese knitting?

  • Love your pod casts…I have a problem..I just knitted a hat and it is HUGE. (Quele domage) (how do you like my french?) (that's the extent of it). I need a pattern that makes sense for me for my daughter. I knit something called "the Gilmore girls hat" and it was a disaster!! I could fit two of me in there. (possible three). Jodi…help me out. I have a large head and usually have to purchase a man's hat for the size. I ask Jodi because she is a self proclaimed hat person. I think I used size 8 needles with a cupcake yarn in pink/purple/red. I must say I am not very good at this despite my willing nature. The hat looked very "homemade" and I was very disappointed. BUT, I will persevere. Thanks for letting me rant! Honey

  • Omg I was just going to sign up for a class that costs $65 dollars at a local yarn shop (not including supplies) to explain the same thing you just did. You're making me want these needles!!

  • Hi Staci – I am wanting to make the Hitchiker scarf that uses 150g of yarn. The yarn I used only came in 100g hanks though, so I used up 50g of one for something else, and now have one 100g ball, and one 50g ball. Should I just split the 100g into two 50g balls? Thanks

  • Interesting! I've knitted mostly with hand dyed yarns and I find the shift of colours absolutely mesmerizing. However, I have never experienced this "colour pooling". Maybe the German ladies that dye the yarn are complete pros at this? πŸ™‚

  • Great video showing how to carry your yarn! This is the cleanest edge I've seen. Also, great visual on carrying yarn when knitting in the round. This one is going in my Knit Encyclopedia playlist.
    Love your work… I've been watching for years. ❀

  • Love your videos! I"ve found them informative. I do have a question this time. Can you point us to a good image of 'pooling'?

    Thanks so much!

  • Thanks so much for another great video! A bonus is now I have a great excuse to buy a second of the "specialty treat myself" bulky hand dyed yarn. My first thick 'n thin too. I know I can count on you for great tips and detailed video instruction πŸ™‚

  • Hi Stacy! Always a pleasure watching your tutorials and this one was so timely for me. I'm a bit of an advance beginner and I've been looking and practicing how to knit a hat in the round and using two colors. Not kidding I've spent a whole afternoon trying and trying and watching videos, oh well? Gracias, gracias Stacy.
    P.S. I love your little pep talks.

  • I Love your tutorials. You never make me feel stupid for clarifying simple things and make more complex things simple. I know how to knit largely due to you. Thank you

  • What if I am knitting in reverse stockinette (where the knit side is on the inside)? I am working on a pattern and am having a hard time getting this technique down.

  • Thank you for this! I am still fairly new to knitting and never even thought to use 3 different balls of yarn to avoid the color pooling.

  • Thank you! I made a pair of socks that I kinda hate because of the color pooling. Now I know to aviod pooling the future.

  • I've been alternating with 2 balls of yarn and am close to binding off. How would you recommend dropping the first ball of yarn before binding off with the second? Simply weave it in or a different technique? Thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *