substituting yarns

Can I substitute Brooklyn Tweed’s Shelter for Rowan DK Tweed? Or Miss Babs Yowza for Rowan DK Tweed?
All thoughts welcome - this substitution thing has me flummoxed.

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I use a lot for eyeballing what will work as a substitute. If you go there and plug in the 3 yarns, you’ll see they have differences, more so for the Rowan. Gauge would be my question, depending on what you’re knitting - a garment that is sized versus a scarf or cowl. All 3 are plied yarns, Rowan and Miss Babs are superwash, but not BT Shelter. Miss Babs matches gauge, per YarnSub, but Shelter does not (at least with the recommended needle size). I say swatch, measure pre- and post-blocking, see if the yarn blooms in a similar fashion (or acts in a similar fashion), and take it from there. Have fun!


Thanks very much for this reply - it’s very helpful. Item to be knitted
will be a sweater for me (size 14), so I’ll have to pay close attention to


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Such a great website. Love it.

Yarn Sub is great, but substituting between DK and Worsted can be tricky, depending on the project. If it’s a sweater, I’d say it’s possible even if Yarn Sub and common wisdom say no. Knitting a worsted at a DK gauge requires packing 2 or 3 more stitches into the 4" span than worsted weight yarn usually likes. And after all that, you may very well end up with cardboard for a fabric.

However, one thing you can do is to figure out the gauge your worsted yarn actually agrees with, then using your desired finished bust circumference, figure out how many stitches that gauge will give you. Match that number to sizes given in your pattern – in the ballpark sense. This works perfectly for yoke and raglan sweaters because they are usually proportionate, but you may need to fiddle with arms hole heights and neck contours for more tailored silhouettes depending on how far you stray from your “usual” size.