Tag Archives: swatch

Double the Yarn, Double the Trouble

19 Dec

I am confused and it’s not the first time. And this is no time to be confused – this is the time for decisive action. A couple of hours ago I suddenly realized that there is one more Christmas gift I really need to knit, and it’s a biggie. These Drops Tights. 

Let’s not even get into whether or not I have a stoat’s chance in hell to get these done. I’ve rationalized that to myself, that’s not confusing. The yarn suggested in the pattern is. The pattern lists two yarns, held double (one strand of each). One fingering, one sport. And yet the Ravelry page for the pattern lists the pattern as for a sports weight yarn.

Maybe Ravelry doesn’t let you list several weights under one pattern. But if that’s the case, why not list the combined weight of the two yarns? That would make it easier for folks like me who want to substitute the yarn for something else… and I may just have answered my own question there.

Some googling gave me three entirely different results on what the combined weight of the two suggested yarns might be, ranging from sport to worsted. Finally, in a forum comment, someone said it’s easy: generally, fingering weight translates to 4 plies. Double that, you get 8 plies. That translates back to DK weight. And so on.

This to me seems to be somewhat less arbitrary than some of the other proposed approaches to this pickle, and I was glad.

Except that sport weight is 5 plies, making the combined weight 9 plies – smack dab in the middle of DK (8 ply) and Worsted (10 ply).


There was no other option. I had to swatch, and choose which weight to go with based on which would match the pattern gauge more accurately or easily. I was more inclined to choose a worsted weight yarn because I’m in a hurry here… so that’s what I swatched first.


I didn’t say I did it well, or anything. I’ll do a proper swatch when I have the actual yarn. This was just to see what weight might be appropriate. Based on this shoddy swatch, I’d say worsted.

Then there’s the issue of the stated yardage. I can’t brain this bit. As an example: say you need 200 yards of X and 200 yards of Y – that’s 400 yards, stated in the pattern. But how much is that of XY? My instinct is it’s 200 yards, because when you knit X and Y together, you’re still only knitting 200 yards worth of yarn. Right?

Not to mention that these tights or long johns or what-have-you aren’t supposed to be full length like in the pattern.

 I’m basically going to have to wing this yarn purchase, aren’t I?

I’m sure it’ll be fine. Just like getting these ready in time for gift exchanging will be fine.

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