Have you tried our new Fable Fur yet? It’s a ridiculously soft faux fur yarn that knits (or crochets) up beautifully at a bulky gauge. It makes a delightful faux fur fabric, perfect for all kinds of things like cowls, headbands, cuffs, collars, cat beds, blankets, slipper linings, and stuffed animals, to name a few! But, if you’ve never used anything like it before, it might be a bit tricky to work with. So I’m here for you, with some tips and tricks!
First of all, relax and don’t worry too much. The great thing about this furry yarn is that (most of) your mistakes will be totally invisible. Use whatever increase and decrease methods are easiest for you, because you won’t see any right or left leaning stitches or slants. When seaming pieces together or picking up stitches, no need to worry about exactly where you’re sticking your needle, as long as the pieces are joined evenly.
Here are a few of the only things you DO need to care about:
- Be careful not to drop a stitch! If you lose a stitch, you might never be able to find it and bring it back up.
- Use a row counter, or write down tally marks for how many rows you’ve worked, if you need an exact number. It’s nearly impossible to count your rows. If you just need to work to a certain measurement, however, there’s no need to keep track of rows!
- Keep stretchiness very much in mind, when casting on, binding off, and seaming. Depending on your gauge, Fable Fur tends to make an extremely stretchy fabric, so a super stretchy and/or loose cast on and bind off is highly recommended.
Let’s talk about gauge! Depending on your project, you may not need to worry about getting a certain gauge. If that’s the case, just make a fabric you like; if you’re not sure what needles to use, knit up a gauge swatch and see if you like the result. You can knit very loosely with Fable Fur and not see holes in your knitting, so you may want to use larger needles than you might expect.
If you do need to measure your gauge, it can be very tricky. One way you might prefer to get a stitches per inch measurement is to keep your knitting on the needle/cord, flatten the swatch on a smooth surface, lay down a ruler to measure 4 inches, and then count the live stitches across the needle. This will be approximate, but that should be all that’s needed with this yarn.
A tip for projects in the colorways that have color variation (these are Bjern, Mishka, and Kuma, which is pictured above): blend between skeins by striping for a few rows back and forth when switching. There can be slight variations so this will ensure a smooth transition.
A tip that might seem obvious, until you’re knitting away and lose your place: use BIG stitch markers! This is some serious fur—things can get lost in there. If you don’t have them handy, making loops from scrap yarn to use as stitches works in place of “real” stitch markers.
If you’re knitting in the round, you may like to use differently sized needle tips to help make it a little bit easier, especially if you’re a tight knitter! The right-hand needle, or the needle which the stitches are being made onto, should be the size you need for gauge, and the other needle, that the stitches are coming off of, can be a couple of sizes smaller. This might make sticking the needle through the stitches smoother for you.
Here’s a neat trick for if you need to thread Fable Fur (or any other thick/fuzzy yarn) into the eye of a yarn needle and are having a tough time: grab a small piece of paper; here I used a page-marker size sticky note, folded in half length-wise (sticky part inside the fold!), but you can just use a small, thin scrap of normal paper. Fold that in half, and place the yarn in the fold.
Now thread the paper through the yarn needle! Much easier than trying to thread a strand of fur on its own!
One more personal recommendation is if you’re nervous about working with Fable Fur, you might want to try crocheting with it first. With crochet, you can’t drop stitches, and with the furry yarn you can basically just stick your hook anywhere. Below is a cat bed that I improvised with a giant hook (I think size M/N)—I just started in the middle, went around and around, sticking my hook in wherever to attempt to make a smooth increase outwards. It’s far from perfect, but the yarn is very forgiving and it lays flat. When the base was as large as I wanted, I stopped increasing and just worked approximately one new stitch into each existing stitch, until my skein ran out. The best part? It only took one skein! It was a fun and easy way to try it out; after this, I knit some garter stitch and it was no problem, much easier than I’d feared!!
Do you have any Fable Fur tips, tricks, or favorite projects? We’d LOVE to hear them in the comments.