How to use yarn bobbins

Get the most out of your yarn bobbins with our quick guide to everything you need to know about them!

What are yarn bobbins?

If you like to crochet (or knit) patterns that feature regular colour changes, such as corner-to-corner projects, intarsia or mosaic crochet, then you should definitely have a set of yarn bobbins in your collection! Yarn bobbins are a helpful way to keep track of yarn colour changes by minimising tangled strands and lessening the need for multiple balls of yarn rolling around the floor.

You can use many things as yarn bobbins, such as pegs or small pieces of card. The idea is to wind yourself small skeins of yarn to use with various colour changes. You wouldn’t need yarn bobbins with a striped blanket or granny square, but you might find them helpful in graphgan designs.

Did you spot these pretty bobbins in Crochet Society Box 13?


Winding your bobbins

Wind the yarn on your bobbin starting from the left side, winding back from left to right and back again. Take care not to overfill your bobbins. Bobbins with too much yarn wrapped round are likely to cause your tension to be uneven, and may unravel too quickly, tangling your yarn and defeating the object of using your bobbins. Instead, it is much better to keep bobbins light and reload often – this may mean more ends to wind in, but far fewer tears untangling yarn as you crochet!

Using your bobbins

With your bobbins wound in the colours you need for your pattern, start crocheting following your pattern/chart, switching colours as needed from each bobbin. Make sure to keep the bobbins to the back of the work when crocheting the RS, and move them to either the right (if you are right-handed) or left (left-handed) as you finish each colour to keep them tidy. You might want to keep one of your MC strands on the skein as you will use more of this colour.

When working on the WS, keep the bobbins to the front of the work and continue as for the RS – it’s that easy! Using bobbins means you don’t need to crochet over any colours between colour changes, keeping your colourwork designs neat and clear.

Why not keep small amounts of black yarn on a bobbin in your project bag all the time? It’s a quick go-to for facial expressions for toys, or emergency stitch marker yarn if you need it!

We hope you enjoyed this guide. If you want to give bobbins a try, find a range of free crochet patterns here.

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