Variegated: exhibiting different colors, especially as irregular patches or streaks.
Variegated yarns exist as a spectrum - from subtle but mostly solid to lightly speckled to streaked and high contrast.
Finding that special one of a kind variegated yarn is one of the great joys of shopping hand-dyed and indie yarn, in our humble opinion. They seem to embody the uniqueness that you can only get in these type of small batch yarns.
But we find with variegated yarns like this, sometimes you can be drawn to the yarn without much of an idea what you're going to use it for. That's where we come in!
One Skein Wonders
One skein wonder patterns often stretch the color out & show it off. Here's some we think make great use out of a single wonderful speckled skein:
Reyna Shawl by Noora Backlund (Fingering)
- We have Reyna Kits!
Sonoya Shawl by Tamy Gore (Fingering)
Ingot Cowl by Lisa Mutch (DK)
- Our modifications to make it a one skein-er: 4 reps at the start & 5" in section 2; also stretchy bind off after the lace
Stay High Shawl by our very own Cadence Kidwell (Fingering)
Snow Drop Headband by Along avec Anna - (DK)
Favorite Ribbed Cap by Laurie Kimmelstiel (Bulky)
Best Beret by James N Watts (Worsted)
Bonus: These are not technically one skein-ers (more like 2-3) but still great projects for speckled yarns:
Adah Shawl by Ambah O'Brien (Fingering)
- You can make in one color or you can fade
Coastal Walk by Joji Locatelli (DK)
Decemberist Shawl by Melanie Berg (Bulky but we did ours in Worsted)
Fade Your Fav Variegated Yarns Together
Free Your Fade Shawl by Andrea Mowry
Dotted Rays Shawl by Stephen West
Make a simple sweater like a Weekender into a fade
Pair with a Solid
If you think variegated yarns can be a bit much on their own, we like recommending using it in addition to a solid colorway to add a little character.
Both Cadence & Melissa have often used more variegated yarns for Colorwork in sweaters, like in the yoke of Cadence's Norwood sweater
Breathing Space Sweater by Veera Valimaki is one that's fun to do the stripes in a speckle (Fingering - but this method works with any striped sweater pattern you like really!)
Koivua Sweater by Kaitlin Hunter (Worsted - more colorwork!)
Or: when making colorwork shawls, pick two or three solids and throw in one variegated one for some depth - like when we used Emma's fingering in colorway Orbit as one of the colors for our Stillness Shawl by Helen Stewart (Fingering) alongside two solids
Pressed Flowers Shawl by Amy Christoffers
- We have gorg variegated Pressed Flowers KITS!
Brioche is another great way to pair variegated yarn with a solid. We like these for a colorful brioche -
Big Easy Cowl by MollyGirl Yarn
Sizzle Pop Shawl by Leslie Anne Robinson (Fingering)
Working with Colorful Mohair
We have lots of speckled Mohair from Emma's Yarns in at the moment which is fun to hold together with solid (or vice versa - solid mohair + speckled yarn). For example you could make -
Birds of a Feather Shawl by Andrea Mowry
Madelyn is eyeing the Bennet Sister Shawl by Lindsey Fowler as a potential project (and yes - mainly because the name is a Jane Austen reference!)
We had to mention that variegated yarns seem made for sock knitting!
Rose City Rollers by Mara Catherine Bryner is a great beginner's pattern!
We especially like to keep an eye on these yarn dyers for when the perfect variegated skein comes in:Manos
Lots to mull over hopefully!
Happy (colorful) knitting!!
xx The Fuzzy Goat Team