How to organize your yarn for knitting intarsia and jacquard


We all know how hard it is to concentrate when knitting projects in intarsia or Jacquard. Holding two or more colors at the same time, making sure the stitches come out perfectly…that’s enough to concentrate on without worrying about the different colors getting tangled together! That’s why we want to give you some ideas in this post to keep your yarn under control; you can use them for Jacquard and intarsia or any other knitting or crochet projects. No more watching your wool roll around the living room.

The first idea we propose to knit better with all of those mini balls of yarn of different colors that you need for jacquard projects, is to put each of them into individual bowls (you can use any container thick enough to support the clip)  and then clip a clip onto the edge, as in the photo. Slip the yarn through the back of the clip to hold your yarn.

Use a different colored bowl for each ball of yarn and they’ll never get tangled again.

Another easy idea is to use a vintage colander that you have around the house. It’s better if it’s metal or of another heavy material, so it doesn’t move around and can hold your yarn.

Pass the yarn through the holes on the side of the colander and start knitting. The holes will keep your yarns separate and at the same time you’ll have them all together in the same container. It looks pretty too!


Of course the easiest way is to use a shoe box to organize your yarn while you knit, there’s always an empty one in every house!

Poke two holes in the shoe box with a pencil, or other sharp pointed object, and then stick your WAK knitting needle through the box. Make sure the needle is longer than the width of the shoe box. Now you have your base to hold the yarns you need.

Remove the needle from one hole, place your skeins in the shoe box, then slip the needle through the center of each skein, and back out the other hole of the box. You should arrange your skeins so that they unwind in the same direction.

For projects that you only need to secure one skein of yarn, a glass jar with a lid can be your best friend. Make a hole in the lid with an awl or drill to pull the yarn through (make sure to sand the edges so the yarn doesn’t snag when you pull it out).

The best part is that you can see which skein is in each jar, and you can carry it with you, or from room to room to make life easier.

You probably have a plastic food container that you don’t use in your kitchen, especially that big one you don’t know why you bought in the first place. It would be perfect for your yarn! Make several holes on the side of the container (make as many holes as colors of yarn you need for your knitting or crochet project), with a piece of hot metal, or an awl, and wait for the plastic to cool. Now you just have to place your skeins of wool inside, and pull the end of each skein through a hole. Put the lid on the container so your wool doesn’t move while you knit.


As you can see, there are lots of ways to deal with those rebellious balls of yarn. You won’t have to unravel lots of knots when you’re in the middle of a row, or run after a ball of yarn that rolls away. Do you have any other ideas? Do you have a foolproof way to organize your yarn when knitting Jacquard or intarsia? Tell us about it using the hashtag #weareknitters on social media!

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