Frequently Asked Questions & Knitter's Resources
We've put together some aids, answers, and authorities on knitting questions and concerns. We hope these how-to's, where-for's and FAQs will help you enjoy knitting and all things knitting related.
The Helping Hand page is designed to be a source for the knitter to learn more about knitting and all things knitting related. Additionally, we provide answers to some frequently asked questions (FAQs).
If you have questions that this page does not answer or if you have any suggestions on articles or items you would like to see addressed here, please let us know by contacting us:
Telephone: 1-800-723-9210 or 603-253-8731
Mail: Patternworks • Box 1618 • Center Harbor, NH 03226 USA
• Favorite Charities for Knitting
• Learn More About Our Designers
How to make a perfect gauge swatch
• Patternworks Tutorial Videos
Which Koigu is right for my project?
Koigu Painter’s Palette Premium Merino (KPPPM) yarns are truly handpainted water-colors. To create these stunning colors each two-pound dye lot is “painted” individually, then rinsed and hung on rods to dry. Once dry, the yarn is reeled and twisted into 50-gram skeins and labeled. This whole process takes three days. Maie Landra, the artist behind the color combinations, says that the perfect dye lot must be alive with highlights and depth. You will find the colors to be bold and luminous with a spark of life in each skein.
Many of you have asked for guidance in choosing variegated Koigu yarns to produce spectacular color palettes that make Koigu garments so outstanding. The best way to choose a color combination is to trust your eye, and to find a common color in each skein. For example, combine pinks that have touches of purple, purples with touches of pink, and blues with highlights of pink and purple. It really is that easy. So, relax and get started. Once you get going, you won’t be able to stop!
How do I choose the right needle?
The choice of needles is a very personal one. Some knitters love the speed of a very slippery, metal needle. Others prefer the warmth and resilience of wood or bamboo. Still others swear by plastic. Here are some general guidelines to match the type of needle with the type of fiber, but until you try a certain needle, you won't know how it feels. And that's the most important criteria!
Wool, Wool-Blend and Acrylic:
These yarns can be smooth or fuzzy, fine or bulky. They are all covered with tiny, microscopic scales that will cling to each other, the needle and you when they get the chance. For stitches that slide along the needle, easily and don't have to be moved along one by one, choose a needle with a slick surface. Addi Turbo, and Quicksilver are good choices. If you don't like working with metal needles, choose a wood or bamboo with a smooth surface such as Crystal Palace. Plastic needles have a lot of static electricity and are not ideal for fuzzy yarn.
This soft, fuzzy fiber knits well on metal or aluminum needles with a hard finish.
Treated to reduce fuzziness and produce a hard, smooth luster, mercerized cotton knits best on a needle that's not too slippery such as plastic, wood or bamboo.
Extremely slippery, linen is easiest to knit evenly with not-too-slick bamboo, wood or plastic needles.
Silk is similar to cotton in that it can be either soft or slubby or hard and smooth. Select your needles as you would for cotton.
Alpaca, Cashmere, Angora:
Extremely soft and fuzzy, these luxury fibers knit best on bamboo or wood such as Crystal Palace or Plymouth bamboo, Susanne's ebony or rosewood, or Brittany Birch.
Novelty, Boucle, Mohair:
These highly textured yarns will behave better with needles that don't get caught in loops or bobbles. Bryspun Flexible needles are a great choice since they have concave points that help pick up the whole fiber to reduce splitting.
How do I know what skill level I'm at?
Here is a basic description of the different skill levels:
Beginner:Knit and purl, minimal or no shaping.
Basic stitches, repetitive patterns and color changes, simple shaping and finishing.
Intermediate: Variety of stitches, knitting in the round, mid-level shaping and finishing.
Experienced: Advanced techniques (cables, lace, Fair Isle, short rows) and color changes, refined finishing.
What is the physical address of the shop?
Our address is 12 Main St, Center Harbor, NH 03226. This address may be used with map programs to get directions to our shop, however we do not receive mail or deliveries at this address. To return an item or send us something by mail, please use the address Rt. 25B, PO Box 1618, Center Harbor, NH 03226.
What are your shop hours?
Our shop, located in Center Harbor, NH is currently open Monday through
Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for winter hours. Typically after Memorial Day we have summer hours which are Monday through Saturday 9:00 am to 6:00 pm and
Sunday 9:00 to 5:00 pm. We are closed on Easter, Thanksgiving and
How do I get to the shop?
From I-93 in New Hampshire, take exit 23. At the end of the exit ramp, head east onto Route 104 towards Meredith. Travel 8.1 miles, you will come to an intersection with Route 3. There is a traffic light at the intersection; turn left onto Route 3 North. Travel 1 mile and you will come to another traffic light, turn right onto Route 25 East. Travel 4.7 miles until you reach a double set of traffic lights. Heath's Hardware will be on your right and Senter's Market on your left. Turn left at the light. Our shop is located in Senter's Market.
Can I get the free pattern without purchasing the yarn?
We have a selection of patterns that are available free with the purchase of at least one ball or skein of the featured yarn. These patterns are not available to purchase separately.
Are the colors shown in the catalog and on the Web site accurate?
We work very hard to get the colors as close as possible in the photographs. There will be minor variations due to printing or due to the color settings on individual computer monitors. If you receive your order and the color was not as shown, please feel free to return that yarn for refund or exchange.
What if I need to match a specific dye lot?
If you're ordering yarn and need to match a specific dye lot, please make a note of the dye lot that you need in the "Comments" window at the end of your order. We will look for the dye lot you need and contact you if we're unable to provide it for you.
What are your shipping charges?
Our shipping charges are based on the value of the merchandise being purchased. For orders being shipped within the United States, the shipping charges are as follows:
|Purchases up to $10.00
|From $10.01 to $25.00
|$25.01 to 40.00
|$40.01 to 55.00
|$55.01 to 70.00
For Canadian shipments, the shipping charge is the amount shown above plus $9.00. For Foreign shipments, the shipping charge is the amount shown above plus $15.00.
UPS 2Day® add $12.00
UPS Ground® (3-5 days) add $6.00
What do the different yarn weights mean?
Super Bulkyknits at a gauge of 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 sts = 1" on size #11 and larger needles or is crocheted with K to P hooks. If you'd like to finish a sweater in a weekend, then this yarn is the perfect choice!
Bulky yarns knit at a gauge of 3 to 3-1/2 sts = 1" on #9 to #11 needles or are crocheted with I or J hooks. Perfect for quick-to-knit sweaters, jackets, hats, scarves and vests for the whole family.
Heavy Worsted knits at a gauge of 4 to 4-1/2 sts = 1" on #9 to #10 needles or can be crocheted with an H hook. Slightly thicker than worsted-weight yarn, this weight is ideal for sweaters and tops to showcase cables and textures, plus blankets and accessories.
Worsted yarns knit at a gauge of 4-1/2 to 5 sts = 1" on size #6 to #9 needles or are crocheted with G or H hooks. By far the most popular yarn-weight category, since it covers every application!
DK is a light-worsted-weight yarn between worsted and sport, knits at a gauge of 5-1/2 sts = 1" on #5 or #6 needles or is crocheted with F or G hooks. An ideal weight for quick-to-knit baby items, children's hats and mittens, plus lightweight adult sweaters.
Sport yarn knits at a gauge of 6 sts = 1" on size #3 to #5 needles or is crocheted with an E or F hook. Just the thing for sweaters and vests, children's garments, heavier socks and traditional Fair Isle colorwork.
Fingering weight knits at a gauge of 7 to 8 sts = 1" on size #1 to #3 needles or is crocheted with D to steel-hook range. A great choice for baby items, socks and lightweight sweaters and when knitting lacy or detailed patterns.
Lace yarns can be knit at a wide gauge range depending on how open or lacy a fabric you want. Needles can range from as small a #00000 to #8, and crochet hooks are in the steel range.
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Learn More About Our Designers
Favorite Charities for Knitting
Teva Durham, creator of Loop-d-Loop, started her own line of yarns and patterns in 2000 after contributing to knitting magazines and pattern collections for years...Read more about Teva Durham
Provides handmade blankets to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need.
Project Linus National Headquarters
PO Box 5621
Bloomington, IL 61702-5621
Warm Up America
Distributes afghans to people in need
Warm Up America! Foundation
2500 Lowell Rd
Ranlo, NC 28054
Stitches From The Heart
Provides handmade clothing and blankets for newborn and premature babies in need.
Stitches From the Heart
3316 Pico Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90405
Mother Bear Project
Provides hand-knit or crocheted bears to children affected by HIV/AIDS worldwide.
Mother Bear Project
PO Box 62188
Minneapolis, MN 55426
Always read the care instructions on the yarn label, and include the care instructions from the yarn label when giving a hand-knit item as a gift.
Yarn Care Key:
* To care for garments knitted from superwash or machine washable yarn, turn them inside out and wash separately on a gentle cycle at the water temperature indicated on the label (30 degrees centigrade is a cool wash, about 86 degrees Fahrenheit. 40 degrees centigrade is warm, about 104 degrees Fahrenheit.) If the label permits machine drying, tumble sweaters briefly and remove while still damp to finish drying flat. Never tumble a hand-knit garment bone dry.
How to make a perfect gauge swatch:
Courtesy of Vogue Knitting International Magazine/SoHo Publishing Company
Note: Gauge should be taken over at least 2"/5cm and preferably over 4"/10cm.
Make a test swatch at least 4"/10cm square. If the number of stitches and rows does not correspond to the gauge given, you must change the needle size. An easy rule to follow is: To get fewer stitches to the inch/cm, use a larger needle; to get more stitches to the inch/cm, use a smaller needle. Continue to try different needle sizes until you get the same number of stitches in the gauge.
|2 strands fingering
|= 1 strand sport
|2 strands sport
|= 1 strand worsted
|2 strands worsted
|= 1 strand bulky
|3 strands worsted
|= 1 strand super bulky