Wednesday, 16 February 2011

3 ply - What's the point???

I am very angry right now. Last week i saw a pattern that i wanted to knit for my partner, so we talked about it and he chose which colours he wanted. I ordered the wool, and as the pattern called for 3 ply i obviously bought 3 ply, which i may point out is the first time i have ever knitted with 3 ply.

The yarn arrived yesterday, so today i set to and started on the back. The first thing i always do is a tension swatch to make sure i knit things up correctly so they knit to the right size. Tension square done, and i decided that my main tension on the 700 would be 4 and a dot (which seems about right considering i use around T6 for 4 ply.

Knitted the ribbing, transfered the stitches knitted the back, looked ok. Knitted the fronts, not looking ok! Knitted one sleeve to see if it would be ok, and no completely too short, so i dont know where ive gone wrong considering i did everything correctly and followed the pattern.

All i can say is, 3 ply - whats the point???? I may aswell be knitting with cotton thread from my mums sewing machine your that thin!!!!!! So i got so frustrated, things got flung across the room and a few rude words kept coming from my mouth. In the end i ended up walking out of the room with a raging headache.

So, ive decided what il do is tomorrow i will knit a tension swatch and try and use the Knitware design software with the help of Susan's videos.

I will not be defeated by 3 ply!!!!!!



  1. Sleep on it and I hope things work out for you.

  2. Hah! I am no yarn expert, infact a lot of it boggles me, but the ply has nothing to do with the size of the yarn (apparently).
    I read, that the ply is how many strands are woven together, it just depends on the size of the strands as to how big/small it is knitted.
    Rather than check the ply if knitting with a different wool than specifies in the pattern you shloud shop to the swatch tension, they all should have it on them (commercial yarns).
    Hope that helps, but there is information out there on it...I just can't remember where I read it :)

  3. Thanks for your comments. Generally from the yarn i use and the information ive read in machine knitting books, the fewer plys means the thinner the yarn. ie 1 ply being thinner than 3 ply and thus 3 ply being thinner than 4 ply. This is true with the yarns i have in my stash and in can make a double knit (8 ply) by using two 4 plys together. I think what it is having thought about it is the material its made of. I expect acrylic 3 ply to be more on the thinner side to a 3 ply wool for example.

  4. I think different countries refer to yarns differently though, as i know a 4 ply in America is more like the British Aran weight

  5. Hey Phil, this isn't the post I originally read, but explains it all the same :)
    Hope it helps.. And I agree, "most" commercial yarns are a uniform size by ply :) most :P