Do you prefer to knit with super bulky yarn? Well, then this post is for you. There is just so much confusion these days in what is considered "super bulky," right? For those wondering, it's the number 6 you see on the labels. (Do we want a post on how to read yarn labels?) However, just because you see that number 6 doesn't mean that it's equivalent to every other super bulky out there, nor will it work up the same. Let's get right down to business here. I am far from being an expert, so take what I say here with a grain of salt. **This post is in no way sponsored by any of the yarn companies I am using for examples.
Shown below is a small sample of the yarns labeled "super bulky" from my stash. I love each and every one of these for different reasons, and they knit beautifully on different patterns, but look carefully and you can see that they are clearly not equivalent to each other. Some look thicker, some look more fluffy and soft, and others look quite thin, almost close to a bulky weight yarn instead. So how do they actually compare? Keep reading!
The fluffier yarns: Sugar Bush Chill, We Are Knitters The Wool, Buttercream Cozy, Wool and the Gang Crazy Sexy Wool, and Indie Dyed fluff. All of these are beautiful in their own way, whether it's the colorway or the feel or the way the project looks afterwards. These are what I consider a heavier super bulky, especially The Wool. The Wool feels more coarse to me, and more stiff compared to the others. That being said, I have also had different colors of The Wool feel much thicker than others, which is weird, right? One would think, same brand, same yarn - it should feel the same - but that isn't the case. The Natural and Marshmallow colorways have felt much thicker to me! Wool and the Gang Crazy Sexy Wool can also feel thick at times too, especially compared to something smoother like Sugar Bush Chill, which I used not not like so much, but now love. I have personally not yet use the Buttercream Cozy (it was a lovely gift from a friend), but it is very squishy and soft, much like the indie dyed fluff (peachy color above). The indie dyed is a gorgeous roving-type yarn that is super soft and I highly recommend trying one if that's in your budget.
But guess what I forgot to include in the photo though! Everyone's favorites: Malabrigo Rasta and Cascade Spuntaneous! These are pictured below. The black is Cascade Spuntaneous and the one in the middle is Malabrigo Rasta. These are ultra-smooth and I feel are very comparable to Sugar Bush Chill in thickness and feel. I have successfully blended these three in patterns with great success! To the right we have Cloudborn fibers, which I believe is discontinued. (It was part of the old Craftsy site, but Craftsy is now quite different from where it started. I don't believe they sell yarn anymore.) To the left, the pink, is Manos del Uruguay Franca - a cloud soft yarn that isn't quite as bulky as the others but is so dreamy and luxurious to knit with, simply beautiful with the right pattern.
Now for the other end of the spectrum. These are three of the lighter weight super bulky yarns. Well, ones that are labeled super bulky by companies. The furthest to the left is the ever-so-popular indie dyed yarn at 76 yards. These are actually labeled super bulky by the distributor, but thinner than any of the yarns mentioned above. In the middle is Baah Yarn Sequoia and it has about 85 yards per hank. I love this one best using US 10/ 8mm needles, maybe up one size sometimes, but it definitely is thinner than the yarns above as well. Sequoia comes in a beautiful array of colorways and is much softer than either of the ones pictured with it. The one on the right is Madeline Tosh ASAP and that comes in at 90 yards. It's a very dense and tubular-feeling single ply yarn. I have yet to be successful in substituting this in a super bulky pattern though. It just doesn't have the bulk that the others do.
Now let's take a look at some of these close up. Can you guess what is what?
As you can see, there is great variety in these super bulky yarns, right? Ok, I cheated, because the furthest one on the right is actually a bulky yarn (Amano Yarns Yana Journey), but look how close the Sequoia, ASAP, and Indie Dyed 76 yards are in width to that! Yana feels very similar in density to ASAP to me, maybe a little bit softer, but just look at the difference from left to right! Now we can see why certain yarns just don't work with certain patterns!
There are so many characteristics to any yarn that it would be prudent to consider what will work best for your project before you begin. As long as you know the gauge from the designer, you can make any project work and save yourself a lot of trouble later on. It's even better when you know what yarn they used and then use Yarn Sub to find a suitable alternative! (Yep, that site is a thing!)
I hope this brief look into just one weight of yarn helps you a little bit when you're choosing yarn for your next project. Until next time, keep knitting! ♥