Crochet: the yarn gobbler part 2

Last week I shared my findings about how much yarn is used in knitting versus crocheting by comparing swatches of with simple knit and crochet stitches (single, half double and double crochet).

This week I want to complete the investigation with more complex stitch patterns.
I chose four different stitch patterns: two different lace patterns, basket weave and cables.

Seeing as I can’t do more than knit and purl when it comes to knitting, I enlisted the help of my lovely friend Michelle, you can follow her adventures in knitting, aerial arts and general day-to-day life on Instagram here.

We made made 10x10cm squares using the same/similar pattern.
We didn’t block the squares, as this isn’t of importance when it comes to weighing them.
I did ask Michelle to stick to 20 stitches for her cast on, which she did, except for in the cabled square. The reason being that in knitting the cabling technique pull the work quite a bit, which meant that her square was much narrower than mine.

We both used the same yarn and I again used a 4mm hook for my squares.
Michelle’s tension is quite lose, so she used 3.5mm needles.

Now lets begin:

The first square is a simple lace stitch pattern and both patterns used 6g of yarn.
So, nothing spectacular to report, except that if you have a limited amount of yarn to work with you should choose lace patterns 😉

Knit Vs Crochet Comparrison


The second stitch pattern was a slightly more elaborate lace with shells and picots.
Here the crochet piece weighed 7g whereas the knitted piece weighed 5g.
Again not too much of a difference.
On a side note, I think that the crochet pice may also be slightly heavier due to the added stitches on the side, as I adapted the pattern to fit into a 20 st row. The actual pattern repeat was not based on a multiple of 20.

Knit Vs Crochet Comparison


This was the most interesting comparison:
The basket weave. The crochet square weighed 10g whereas the knit square only weighed 5g.
Now, the reason for this difference is quite easy to explain.
When creating a basket weave stitch in crochet one uses post stitches, alternating between front and back post stitches. This creates the woven look.
However, since one uses post stitches one creates a much denser fabric than in knitting, which is simply an alternation of knit and purl stitches.

Knit Vs Crochet Comparison
The difference between the cable swatches was similar to the basket weave.
The crochet swatch again weighed 10g whereas the knit square weighed 7g.
The fact that the knit square weighed slightly more probably stems form the fact that Michelle used more stitches as explained above.

Knit Vs Crochet Comparison

So, there you have it.
I am really glad I did this comparison because it actually means that the ‘crochet takes approximately 1/3 yarn more’ statement is incorrect.

I would really like to know how it was calculated because according to my findings it is not very accurate.

Here’s a little summary:

Single crochet pieces create the densest fabric, so they are the real yarn gobblers.
Stay away from single crochet pieces if you don’t have much yarn to work with 😉

Half double and double crochet stitches; in fact all longer stitches use slightly less yarn than single crochet, and you need to make far fewer rows/rounds in order to create length.
The only exceptions are patterns that make use of post stitches, such as basket weaves or cables.

Lace stitch patterns use the least amount of yarn….

so go get some yarn and a hook and create something lacy!
Just make sure you block your lace project, since it does display the pattern in all it’s glory.

Tomorrow (if my squares are dry by then) I will post about week 5 of the Scheepjes Wol CAL.


06. November 2014 by Stephanie Davies
Categories: Tried and Tested | Tags: , , | 1 comment

One Comment

  1. Very interesting and helpful. Thank you!

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