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How to Substitute Yarns

Changing the yarn in a pattern for a different yarn can be necessary for a number of reasons, such as the yarn being discontinued, being made from a fiber you don't like or are sensitive to, being out of your price range or simply unavailable for another reason.

It is not that difficult to substitute yarns, but the prospect of finding the right yarn to complete a project can be quite daunting for beginners.

Here are some tips on how to choose the right substitute for a yarn given in a pattern.

The most important piece of information you need about the yarn in question is its gauge, or the number of stitches and rows per inch that the designer got when she or he worked the pattern.

You will need to find a yarn that allows you to knit that same gauge when using the same size needle.

If a pattern doesn't tell you the gauge, it's likely it will tell you the weight of the yarn, whether its chunky, worsted, or fingering weight.

Some patterns that give gauge will also tell you the weight of the yarn, which is handy information to help in your search.

You can also adjust your needle size to get the guage you need so it's not important if you can't find a yarn that has the exact stitch guage. You can make it work by adjusting your needle size.

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