Yarn Balls with Knots: Peeves & Helpful Tips

Knots… Do you hate surprises in yarn balls where you discover a knot? Like many of you, it boils my blood too! Only with certain types of yarn balls though.

How to Crochet A Basket Weave Pillow
Crochet Basket Weave Pillow

I have an extreme love for slowly variegated yarn. You know, the ball is so slow to transition that you will only see the same colour maybe 3 times in a yarn ball.

See my Crochet Basket Weave Pillow Pattern Project.

As my good friend Michelle reminds me, a ball of yarn always has a beginning and end. It would be an environmental catastrophe if every yarn ball sold on the store shelves had no knots between the start and the end of the ball. It would mean if the strand broke, frayed or the master cone ran out in the middle of making a ball, the ball would then be garbage. Basically filling up land fills with usable yarn in between the knots.

  • Think about your stash and think how many times you have run into a knot while working on your yarn ball. If you had to throw out all the balls that didn’t have a knot inside the yarn ball, I bet your stash would be thinned out.
    Multiply this by a yarn manufacturer where they produce thousands of yarn balls a day, they could potentially be throwing out more yarn than they make in an average day.

I mentioned above that I love slowly transitioning yarn. I have done projects where there has been knots inside of the ball. Sometimes I am extremely irritated as the knot has joined two colours together that are not in sequence of the entire ball. This throws off my colouring of my entire project and though I shouldn’t easily admit, it really gets my goat!

Wind Up Your Balls First

Yarn Ball Winding
Yarn Ball Winding. See My Article and Video Demonstration.

To solve my issue with slowly transitioning yarn, I have gotten used to winding up a fresh ball of yarn onto my yarn winder. Sounds stupid you may think but there is a method to my madness. A ball can be wound up in less than 4 minutes. That 4 minutes is time well spent!

See a Live Demo of Yarn Ball Winding.

  • By re-winding the ball you can get an advanced preview of the yarn itself.
  • In a case of a nice knitted scarf I am doing, having a knot where the yarn on either side of the knot isn’t in colour sequence is going to wreck my design.
  • I can see very quickly if there are any knots and whether I need to deal with it in advance. So if the operator that made the ball didn’t align the colour to be the right sequence, I can fix it immediately by cutting out the knot and ensuring the colour on the other side of the knot is the same.

This action alone for me allows me to relax and enjoy my crochet and knitting a lot more. I can be comforted knowing that I won’t be expecting any surprises half way through the ball.

I know for some of my fans that getting knots in the yarn balls are a huge deal. If the colour is solid, I don’t even bat an eye and can adapt. I know how to effectively change colour or strands without anyone noticing it.

As I remind myself, “Life isn’t perfect and neither are yarn balls!” If you can adapt, you will be a lot farther ahead and not waste yarn too.

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