What Hannah Makes

The Making Life Yarn Stash: Different Type of Yarn and What to Crochet With Them

Walk into the craft store. Take a stroll through the yarn store. Peruse the big bags of yarn at the thrift store. Search through the tote of yarn given to you from your great Aunt Ethel who no longer crochets.

You don’t really need more yarn, but the colors and the textures are just too appealing to pass by. Is this you? Do you feel the need to get one more skein of yarn every time you go to the store?

Well, even if you don’t, that’s my tendency. So much so that over the years I’ve acquired quite the yarn stash. The only problem is, I haven’t used and don’t plan on using some of the yarn I’ve accumulated. The other day I decided to winnow down my yarn stash and make some hard choices concerning which yarns I will actually use and which ones I won’t.

In the meantime, I thought it would be fun to show you the yarns I have sitting in my home and give you some information about each kind in case you had some or were considering purchasing one.

Without further ado, take a visual tour with me through my extensive yarn stash. Once you’re done, comment at the bottom about your favorite types of yarn and the projects you’ve finished or plan on making with them one day.

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Table of Contents for Easy Navigation

Different Weights of Yarn

Just in case you were curious about the weight of each type of yarn, I’ve included a graphic I made for my Crochet Basics guide.

1. Wool Ease Thick and Quick From Lion Brand

Number one on my list is Wool Ease Thick and Quick from Lion Brand. I’ve used this type of yarn quite a few times to make a number of crochet projects. Most recently I purchased this color which is called kale, and I’m in love with it. I want to make a new blanket for our living room that we can cuddle under during movie night or while reading a good book.

In the past, I’ve also used this yarn to make hats, hoods, and a little toy basket for my daughter’s pegdolls.  I like the way that it works up as it states “thick and quick.” It’s a super bulky yarn which is listed as a number 6. The recommended crochet hook size is an N-13 or 9MM.

The yarn is called Wool Ease, but it is actually only 20% wool. Wool Ease Thick and Quick mixes natural and synthetic fibers including acrylic (77%) and viscose (3%).

Even though it is partially made from wool, it’s still machine washable and dryable which is nice if you plan on making an item that may need washed from time to time.

What I Like About Wool Ease Thick and Quick

Here’s a rundown of what I like about this yarn:

  • Easy to crochet with
  • Works up fast
  • Looks great
  • Holds its form well
  • Comes in a fun and attractive variety of colors and patterns
  • Can be purchased in a number of venues
  • Not too rough in texture
  • Holds its shape very well when worked up

What I Don’t Like About Wool Ease Thick and Quick

  • One thing I noticed that I don’t like about this yarn is that it becomes a bit pilly over time. However, I’ve had the same problem with every type of super bulky yarn I’ve purchased so it isn’t unique in this way.
  • Not completely made of wool for those looking for a completely natural product.

Project Ideas for Wool Ease Thick and Quick

I personally chose this product because I wanted to make a new throw for our living room. Other ideas for this yarn include:

  • Hats
  • Hoods
  • Cowls
  • Mittens
  • Basket
  • Stuffed animals

Ravelry.com is a really great resource for finding free and premium crochet patterns. I went there to find some crochet patterns using Wool Ease Thick and Quick, and I will share some of the ones that caught my eye below. Keep in mind that in order to use this website, you will need to register. It’s free to register but it’s a small hurdle you’ll need to do in order to search their database or view my suggestions.

  • Jessie Stash Basket – a cute basket you can use to house your yarn stash or any number of items.
  • Waistcoat Basket – This is the same basket I used for my daughter’s pegdolls. The creator Stephanie Jessica Lau makes a lot of really beautiful patterns.
  • Faux Knit Twisted Ear Warmer – This head warmer pattern looks knit but is actually crochet. Very pretty and looks warm too.

Where to Purchase Wool Ease Thick and Quick From Lion Brand

You can purchase this yarn directly from the Lion Brand website. They offer a LOT of color options and often run sales that allow you to purchase their yarn at a chapter price.

This yarn can also be found online on Amazon, or in retail stores like Walmart, Michaels, and JoAnn Fabrics.

2. Caron Simply Soft

Let me introduce you to Caron Simply Soft. This is one of the first yarns that I ever purchased. I’ve made several afghan blankets with them as well as a few hats. There’s a wide range of colors and this brand is very soft and inexpensive. You can buy enough for a blanket without breaking the bank.

This is size 4 medium yarn (worsted weight) although it’s a bit thinner than other worsted weight yarns. It’s recommended to use an H-8 5MM crochet hook. The yarn is very glossy and pretty when worked up. This yarn is completely synthetic and made from acrylic. The yarn can be machine washed and dried and is easy to care for. Caron Simply Soft is made in the United States.

What I Like About Caron Simply Soft Yarn

Some things I like about Caron Simply Soft are:

  • Pretty colors
  • A glossy look
  • Holds up pretty well over time even after being washed
  • Very soft
  • Can be bought in most places where yarn is sold
  • Made in the USA

What I Don’t Like About Caron Simply Soft Yarn

  • Doesn’t hold its shape well. If you want to make something that has structure this is not the yarn for you.
  • The yarn can split apart as you’re working which can be a nuisance.
  • Takes a while to work up. If you want a project that will work up quickly, try something with a bit more bulk. Even other worsted weight yarn like Red Heart Super Saver (will talk about this later) will work up faster than this yarn will.

Project Ideas for Caron Simply Soft

I think this yarn is good for things like:

  • Blankets
  • Baby blankets
  • Sweaters or other clothing

Ravelry projects you might enjoy include:

  • Spectrum Afghan– a colorful blanket by the Caron Design Team.
  • Fair Isle Mittens – I personally think fair isle patterns are very pretty and this design by Yarnspirations looks lovely.
  • Friendship Shawl – A pretty shawl design by Kim Guzman.

Where to Purchase Caron Simply Soft

You can buy Caron Simply Soft Yarn on Amazon, or at other major stores like Michaels, JoAnn Fabrics, or Walmart.

3. Red Heart Super Saver Yarn

Red Heart Super Saver yarn is like the workhouse of the yarn community. It’s the yarn your grandmother probably used. It’s consistent. It works up well. It holds its structure well. You can find it in almost any color or pattern you can imagine. It’s 100% made of acrylic and it isn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

This is a worsted weight yarn that can be washed, dried, set out in the elements, and keep on ticking. The only thing you shouldn’t do with it is iron it or try to use it as hot pads. It will melt and burn. It was not created for that.

What I Like About Red Heart Super Saver Yarn

  • Comes in a variety of colors and patterns
  • Can be found almost anywhere (including your local thrift store)
  • Very consistent yarn — you always know what to expect
  • Can be used to make a wide variety of things
  • Inexpensive

What I Don’t Like About Red Heart Super Saver Yarn

  • Although yarn has come a long way in this department, Red Heart Super Saver yarn is not as soft as some other choices
  • Non-natural fibers if you’re looking for natural yarn
  • Not sure how to describe this, but this yarn looks the most basic in my opinion for a finished product

Project Ideas for Red Heart Super Saver Yarn

You can make just about anything with this yarn including:

  • Hats
  • Gloves
  • Scarves
  • Sweaters
  • Headbands
  • Blankets
  • Stuffed animals or amigurumi
  • Toilet seat covers

Some fun ideas on Ravelry for this yarn are:

  • Yarn Yoshi – Do you have someone in your life who loves Mario? This pattern by Ami Amour is ADORable.
  • Cici’s Ombre Super Scarf – Looking for an ombre scarf pattern that you can make while watching your favorite TV show? This one by Yarnspirations will make you feel beautiful.
  • Corner-to-Corner Ombre Throw – Keeping on the ombre train, this pattern by Carolyn Calderon is a nice throw made in an ombre pattern.

Where to Buy Red Heart Super Saver Yarn

You can buy this yarn almost anywhere that sells yarn. It’s available on Amazon as well as other retailers like JoAnn Fabrics, Michaels, and Walmart.

4. Sugar’n Cream Yarn by Lily and Yarnspirations

Sugar’n Cream by Lily and Yarnspirations is usually made into little bundles of yarn or larger cones of yarn. The yarn is made of 100% cotton grown in the United States and is made in Canada. It comes in a wide variety of colors and patterns and can be found online and in-store in many locations.

This is a medium worsted weight yarn that works best with a 4 MM to 5MM crochet hook. It can be washed and dried, but do be careful the first time you wash it because sometimes the colors run. It’s not recommended to iron this yarn even though it is made of natural fibers.

What I Like About Sugar’n Cream Yarn

This is one of my favorite yarns. Here’s why:

  • 100% natural fibers and grown in the US
  • Comes in a variety of colors and patterns
  • Looks very nice worked up
  • Perfect for kitchen items like dish towels and washcloths

What I Don’t Like About Sugar’n Cream Yarn

  • Sometimes I have trouble with the yarn getting tangled although that may just be user error.
  • Some colors bleed the first or second time you get them wet. I’ve noticed it most with the bright blue colors.

Project Ideas for Sugar’n Cream Yarn

I use this yarn to make dishcloths, and you can check out my free pattern here if you’re interested in making some of your own. Some other ideas for projects are:

  • Dishtowels
  • Amigurumi
  • Placemats
  • Dolls
  • Rugs
  • Baby blanket
  • Baby booties
  • Market bags

On Ravelry, a few fun patterns include:

  • Circle Rug. More of a hexagon than a rug, this rug is quite nice for a living room or a baby’s room.
  • Pretty as a Picture Frames. Small little circle frames for little pictures.
  • Easy, Breezy Carry-All. A bag you can take to the farmer’s market with you and pick up all the lovely flowers and vegetables.

Where to Buy Sugar’n Cream Yarn

You can buy this yarn online on Amazon, or in retail stores like Walmart, JoAnn Fabrics, or Michael’s.

5. Vanna’s Choice by Lion Brand

Vanna’s Choice Lion Brand Yarn is a 100% acrylic yarn that is similar to the Red Heart Super Saver. In my opinion, this yarn is a bit softer and looks a little nicer than Super Saver Yarn.

Vanna’s Choice is a worsted 4 medium weight yarn and Lion Brand recommends you use a J-10 6MM crochet hook with this yarn. It can be washed and dried, but not ironed. Vanna White has been Lion Brand’s spokesperson for over 15 years and this is a line of yarn that she recommends.

What I Like About Vanna’s Choice Lion Brand Yarn

  • Looks lovely worked up
  • Easy to work with
  • Consistent yarn
  • Lots of color and pattern choices
  • Soft
  • Inexpsensive

What I Don’t Like About Vanna’s Choice Lion Brand Yarn

I was having trouble coming up with things I didn’t like about this yarn. The only thing I could think of is that it’s a synthetic yarn if you would prefer natural fibers.

Project Ideas for Vanna’s Choice Lion Brand Yarn

Some things you can make with this yarn are:

  • Sweaters
  • Hats
  • Gloves
  • Blankets
  • Baby clothes
  • Shawls

Some ideas from Ravelry are:

Where to Buy Vanna’s Choice Yarn by Lion Brand

You can purchase Vanna’s Choice Yarn online at lion brand’s website or on Amazon. It can also be found in box stores like JoAnn Fabrics, Michael’s, and Walmart.

6. Wonderland Yarns

Once upon a time I went to a small little yarn shop and purchased yarn that was on sale. It was 100% superwash merino yarn called Wonderland Yarns. Unfortunately, I bought a lot of it in a sock/fingering weight without realizing it. It’s really not the weight of yarn I would ordinarily use and I’ve yet to use it for any project. However, I love it so much I also will not let it go.

This yarn is hand-dyed and spun in the US and is inspired by the book Alice in Wonderland. It must be hand washed in cold water and air-dried.

What I Like About the Wonderland Yarn

  • It’s SOOOO pretty
  • Made from merino wool (natural fibers)
  • Made in the USA (although I’m not sure where the wool comes from)
  • Love the colors and the theme is fun

What I Don’t Like About Wonderland Yarn

  • This yarn comes in other weights, but I just don’t use sock yarn typically.
  • Can’t put it in the washer and dryer.

Project Ideas for Wonderland Yarn

The particular weight I purchased this yarn in is different than the rest of their lines. I’m not sure what to recommend with this particular weight except maybe:

  • Socks
  • Lightweight baby blanket
  • Very lightweight hat
  • Lightweight shawl

Where to Buy Wonderland Yarns

The only place I know where to buy this yarn is online on their website or in local yarn shops. They have an option to search for local yarn shops on their website.

Special Note

If you get a hank of yarn like the one in green… you need to unwind it in a special way. Otherwise, it turns into a BIG mess. I have a tutorial sharing how to unwind a hank of yarn WITHOUT any special equipment.

7. Hipster Cotton Yarn by Premier

This Christmas my sister-in-law bought me this delicious Hipster Cotton Yarn by Premier. I have yet to use it, but I can’t wait until I do. Made from 100% cotton and dyed in really fun color patterns, this looks really exciting to use.

This yarn is a lightweight size 4 yarn and they recommend using a 5MM crochet hook. It can be washed and tumble-dried.

What I Like About Hipster Cotton Yarn by Premier

I haven’t used this yarn yet, but what I like so far is:

  • 100% Cotton Yarn
  • Beautiful colorful colors

What I Don’t Like About Hipster Cotton Yarn by Premier

I haven’t used it yet and I can’t think of anything I don’t like about it!

Project Ideas for Hipster Cotton Yarn by Premier

  • Dishcloths
  • Dishtowels
  • Hats
  • Scarves
  • Shawls

Some patterns you can use from Ravelry are:

Where to Buy Hipster Cotton Premier Yarn

You can buy Hipster Cotton Premier Yarn online on Amazon and Walmart.

8. Mandala Cake Yarn by Lion Brand

Knitters and crocheters around the world like yarn cakes. Or at least, I like them. They usually have an assortment of colors that look really nice together and it feels a bit like unraveling a present seeing the colors unfold. I picked up this Mandala yarn by Lion Brand the other day at JoAnn Fabrics.

This yarn is a 3 lightweight yarn and it calls for an H-8 5MM crochet hook. It’s 100% acrylic and it can be put in the washing machine and dryer. It cannot be ironed (it will melt!).  I bought this particular yarn to make a hat, but I haven’t made it yet.

What I Like About Mandala Yarn by Lion Brand

I haven’t used this yarn yet, but what I do like is:

  • The variety of color patterns
  • The softness of the yarn

What I Don’t Like About Mandala Yarn by Lion Brand

  • I prefer heavier weight yarn because it takes me a long time to crochet things, but this is a preference.

Project Ideas for Mandala Yarn

  • Hats
  • Scarves
  • Shawls

Ideas from Ravelry include:

Where to Buy Mandala Yarn by Lion Brand

You can purchase this yarn online on Lionbrand’s website or on Amazon. You can also find it at JoAnn Fabrics.

9. Additional Yarns In My Yarn Stash (Some That May Not Be Available For Purchase)

There are a few more skeins of yarn that I have… some of them may be retired or hard to find, but I wanted to share them anyway. This will be an abbreviated section.

a. Wool-Ease Chunky

I mentioned Lion Brand’s Wool-Ease Thick and Quick earlier, but there is also the Wool-Ease “chunky” variety. This is not quite as thick as the quick and thick, but will work up faster than worsted weight yarns.

This is a bulky weight yarn and it calls for a K-10 6.5MM crochet hook. I believe this style of Wool-Ease has been retired.

b. Cuddly Classic DK by Euro Yarns

I picked these up at a little yarn shop that an elderly woman was closing down. I have yet to find a purpose for it, but I like it nonetheless.

I don’t believe this can be found in stores any longer.

c. Merino 5 by Crystal Palace Yarns

This picture isn’t even in focus. Geeze. Also, I believe this yarn is also retired. Still, it’s beautiful and I love it. I started making a winter headband with it once but didn’t finish it. I hope I’m not the only one with half-finished crochet or knit projects.

This would have been a pretty headband if I had finished it. I think I made a mistake and then lost my place. Anyway, I still like it.

d. Nifty Cotton by Cascade Yarns

I picked up these cotton yarns at a local craft/handmade goods shop called 7th Street Marketry. I haven’t used them yet but I’m looking forward to making something from them.

e. Local Wool Yarn

I also bought this wool yarn from an elderly lady who closed down her shop. She made this yarn herself from local sheep. I love it but I haven’t used it yet. Do you have any fun ideas for what to do with this yarn?

What’s in YOUR Yarn Stash?

I’ve shared my yarn stash with you, what’s in yours? Which of these yarns have you tried? Did you love them? Hate them? What yarn would you recommend to your fellow knitters/crocheters?

This post was fun to write, and I’d love to hear from you! I’m sure I’m not the only one who has more yarn than they have specific plans for. Maybe after reading this you’ve been inspired to make something new! If you’re brand new to crocheting, don’t forget to visit my Crochet Basics guide to learn everything you need to know to get started.

Until next time, keep making!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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