Everything is more fun with color. That’s why variegated and multi-colored yarn should be your go-to yarn for your next craft project.
Variegated yarn simply refers to any yarn that has been dyed with multiple colors. Not only does this make your crochet patterns stand out, but it also opens up plenty of possibilities for exciting techniques and patterns.
So what are the best variegated and multi-colored yarns? The best yarn for your specific project depends on the specific colors you’re looking for, whether the yarn is cotton, acrylic, or wool, and the type of project.
In this article, I’m going to breakdown some of the best yarns of the variegated nature out there, so that you can be sure you’re getting the best value and using the best product.
The 5 Best Variegated And Multi-Colored Yarns: Cotton
Cotton yarn is a great choice for anything light you want to make, or anything breathable. There’s a reason why it’s used so commonly for clothing, and that’s because of how comfortable it is on the skin.
As a result, cotton is an excellent option for making spring or summer clothes, since they won’t stick to you and feel uncomfortable in the heat of the sun.
Cotton is also excellent for showing detail in your crochet pattern, which comes in handy when you want to show off your beautiful, multi-colored stitch works.
Lastly, cotton is highly water absorbent and can be washed by machine. This means you don’t have to worry about spills or stains as much as other materials.
As for the downsides, using a variety of colors with cotton yarn can cause a bleeding effect. That is to say, darker colors like blues and blacks can start to bleed during machine washing.
On top of this, cotton, while being the most commonly used yarn for clothing, can be tricky to get to grips with. The lack of elasticity with cotton means you can struggle sometimes to maintain even tension, and can lead to problems knitting.
Here are the best cotton yarns with variegated colors:
|1.||Lily Sugar'n Cream Cotton Cone Yarn||Worsted weight; multiple color options; cotton|
|2.||BambooMN Cotton Variegated Yarn||Sport weight; multiple color options; cotton|
|3.||Knit Picks Dishie Multi Cotton Yarn||Worsted weight; multiple color options; cotton|
|4.||Cotton Fair Multi Yarn||DK weight; cool colors, white and grey; cotton blend|
|5.||Bernat Handicrafter Holidays Yarn||Worsted weight; Christmas colors; cotton|
Let’s go over each one of these bad boys, shall we?
1. Lily Sugar’n Cream Cotton Cone Yarn
First up we have Lily Sugar’n Cream cotton cone yarn. A soft, natural cotton yarn that comes in a 14oz cone, this will be more than enough to get you started on your first variegated yarn crochet project.
Made from 100% cotton, this yarn is machine washable and looks fantastic too.
With a wide variety of color options spanning the spectrum, you can find exactly the color you want for whatever the project.
As attested to by a number of customers, this variegated yarn is an excellent option for making gifts with a personal touch.
Super soft and cozy, you will be able to make anything from a baby’s blanket, to a colorful new water-absorbent washcloth.
Built to endure wear and tear, you can rest assured that this yarn will last and prove durable for whatever the purpose.
2. BambooMN Cotton Select Variegated Sport Weight Yarn
This 100% cotton variegated yarn from BambooMN comes in a range of subtle yet striking color combinations.
This yarn is really good for everything from clothing to dish rags, baby garments to accessories like scarves and hats.
One of this yarn’s best qualities is how it stands up to wear and tear, and isn’t as susceptible to snagging and fraying as other yarn.
Each pack comes with 4 skeins, and the cotton used is of a high quality, so you can be sure the end product won’t disappoint.
It’s perfectly fine to machine wash this variegated yarn, which makes it easy to keep stain-free in the long run.
People love how soft this yarn is and how pleasant it is to work with. They also praise the vibrant colors and high quality nature of the product.
3. Knit Picks Dishie Multi Worsted Cotton Yarn
Knit Picks multi worsted cotton yarn is a great option for injecting color into your crochet work.
Available in a range of fun colors, this yarn comes in bundles of 3.5 oz, which approximates to 190 yds in length.
This yarn shines when it comes to making things for the home like washcloths and towels. In part due to the water-absorbent nature of 100% cotton, and in part due to the character added by the cool color combinations.
The yarn is machine washable, and people love how easy it is to knit with.
4. Cotton Fair Multi Yarn
Cotton Fair variegated yarn is a great lightweight cotton blend which works well for all breathable summer clothing and accessories.
The yarn is made from 50% cotton and 50% acrylic. What this means is you’ll get the best of both worlds. A durable yarn that’s water absorbent and looks the part.
The color combinations on offer are perfect for the hot weather, with lighter blues and whites, and darker reds and browns.
People love how simple it is to knit with this variegated yarn, and comment on how pleasant it is to use as clothing.
5. Bernat Handicrafter Holidays Yarn
Bernat Yarn offers some fantastic color combinations in their yarn such as this super festive Christmas Holiday skein.
Combining multiple colors in a fun way, this variegated yarn makes the perfect knitting material for gifts around the holiday season.
This product is a jumbo skein weighing around 12 oz, and is roughly 608 yards in length.
Bernat Yarn is made from 100% cotton, and is fine to be machine washed.
This quality brand is ideal for making dish cloths and other items for the home.
The 5 Best Variegated And Multi-Colored Yarns: Wool
Moving on to another commonly used yarn, let’s take a look at the benefits and downsides of wool.
Due to the more dense, thicker property of wool as a material, it is best used for warm winter clothing and heavier pieces.
Unlike cotton, wool makes for a very elastic material, meaning it will always bounce back to its original form when stretched out. This makes it a good choice for outdoor accessories like gloves and warmer clothes.
Wool is considerably more durable than cotton too, so as you can imagine that gives it the edge for projects that need to withstand the elements and wear and tear.
The warmth of wool is also a plus point for making cozy sweaters and such.
Wool is a great beginner’s choice when it comes to knitting, due to its elasticity, and you can feel good that you’re using sustainable material in your work.
Lastly, wool is water and fire-resistant, so there’s no need to fear spills and stains.
As for the disadvantages of using wool for your knitting, it can cause some people to have allergic reactions. Plus, it can seem uncomfortable to wear for some, causing irritation to the skin.
With the pros and cons out of the way, let’s look at the top 5 variegated wool yarns so you can start making your cozy winter clothes!
Here are our top picks:
|1.||Niceec Rainbow Soft Yarn||Sock/DK weight (varies); rainbow colors; wool|
|2.||Knit Picks Sock Yarn||Fingering weight; red/warm colors; 80% wool|
|3.||Supersocke Virgin Wool Blend||Fingering weight; warm and cool colors; wool blend|
|4.||Malabrigo Worsted Knitting Yarn||Worsted weight; indigo variation; wool|
|5.||Yarn Art Wool Acrylic Blend Yarn||Worsted weight; assorted cool colors; wool blend|
Just as we did with the cotton yarns above, we’ll go into each of these woolen beauties below!
1. Niceec Rainbow Soft Yarn
Starting strong, we have the Niceec Rainbow Soft Yarn. A mesmerizing array of colors characterize this variegated yarn and make it stand out from others.
Each package contains 2 skeins of rainbow colored wool yarn, with each stretching out to approximately 196 yards in length.
This yarn is made from 100% wool, and the company has used eco-friendly dyes for the vibrant coloring.
Incredibly soft, this yarn is a delight to use, and makes for a great colorful sweater or scarf.
You won’t have to be afraid to wash this yarn, as it won’t shrink or fade.
What do people like the most about this variegated yarn? Well, to put it simply – they love the high quality of wool combined with the striking colors.
2. Knit Picks Sock Yarn
Knit Picks Sock Yarn is available in a number of color combinations and is a mix of 80% wool and 20% nylon.
Measuring roughly 357 yards in length, this yarn is highly durable due to the addition of nylon and also wonderfully colorful. This makes it a fantastic option for comfortable winter scarves and sweaters.
You can machine wash this variegated yarn, so you won’t have to worry about ruining the material or dealing with stains.
3. Supersocke Virgin Wool Blend
This Supersocke Virgin Wool Blend comes in 8 different color combinations.
They are made from 75% wool and 25% polyamid-nylon and each skein is around 459 yards in length.
You can machine wash this product and it is made to last.
The added bonus with this variegated yarn is that it is infused with both aloe and jobaba oil, meaning the cozy clothes you knit will feel even more homely and pleasant.
4. Malabrigo Worsted Knitting Yarn
A rare find, this Malabrigo variegated yarn is made from 100% Merino wool, making it a high-quality product.
As you may have noticed, many wool yarns are made as a mix with acrylic, so this one stands out by virtue of being pure wool.
The length of 1 skein of this yarn is 210 yards. You’ll have to wash this one by hand though to preserve the wool and avoid damaging it in the washing machine.
People adore the high-quality wool that makes up this yarn, and comment on its wonderfully soft nature, making everything you knit that much cozier.
5. Yarn Art Wool Acrylic Blend Yarn
Last up for wool yarn, we have this bulk purchase Yarn Art variegated yarn.
Available as a 10-pack, each ball in the packet measures roughly 87 yards in length, which the company claims are suitable for a long sleeve sweater.
The makeup of this yarn is 60% wool and 40% acrylic. This particular product requires hand washing to preserve its quality.
The 5 Best Variegated And Multi-Colored Yarns: Acrylic
Onto variegated acrylic yarn, let’s take a look at some of its properties and what you can expect from using this material.
Not being a naturally occurring material, like wool, for example, acrylic is much easier to color and as a result, can look seriously impressive.
It is also one of the more affordable yarn options out there, for those of us knitting on a budget.
Unlike wool, you shouldn’t have any allergic reactions with acrylic, since it’s made from synthetic fibers. Acrylic is highly durable and perfectly fine to machine wash.
As for the downsides, the breathability of acrylic isn’t great—it holds onto water and smells. As you might have also figured out, due to its low cost, acrylic can appear to be a low-quality product too at times.
Now let’s get into the top 5 variegated acrylic yarns to get you going on your next project.
1. Lion Brand Woolspun Yarn
A mix of 80% acrylic and 20% wool, Lion Brand’s variegated yarn is a wonderfully warm and soft material to work with.
The colors of the product shine through, which can contribute to making your end product stand out.
This 3 pack comes with skeins at 127 yards of length each, making for a total of 381 yards.
An affordable option that doesn’t sacrifice on quality, it’s hard to go wrong with this yarn.
2. Premier Yarns: Isaac Mizrahi Craft Yarn
This Premier Yarns 3 pack is made up of 3 skeins measuring 69 yards in length, and 207 yards in total.
This yarn is a blend of 85% acrylic and 15% wool, giving you a durable, yet at the same time, soft product to work with.
A satisfyingly chunky yarn, this one will be perfect for knitting your next sweater or item of heavier clothing.
The color combinations offered by the brand have been made to reflect New York neighborhoods, to give them a unique flavor.
3. Patons Shetland Chunky Tweed Yarn
Patons Chunky Tweed Yarn is a subtle variegated yarn which has just enough color to make your work stand out, without being over the top.
Made from 72% acrylic and 25% wool, this product comes with 3 skeins measuring 125 yards each, and weighing 3 oz.
As a thicker yarn made with wool, this one is fantastic for knitting warm winter hats and scarves.
The weight and warmth combine to make a super cozy end product, that’ll keep you comfortable through the colder months.
4. Bernat Softee Chunky Yarn
Bernat Softee Chunky Yarn is a thick variegated yarn made from 100% acrylic.
Due to the fact that it is made solely from acrylic, the colors of this yarn really pop, making it great for colorful gifts and accessories.
Each packet comes with 3 skeins measuring 77 yards each, and weighing 2.8 oz.
Perfect for cozy blankets, you will struggle to find a more vibrant variegated yarn than this one.
5. Lion Wool-Ease Acrylic Yarn
Made from 80% acrylic and 20% wool, this Lion Wool-Ease yarn is thick and warm.
By combining acrylic with a small amount of wool, the end result is a product that is both cozy yet practical to maintain.
This yarn won’t shred like 100% acrylic yarn can be liable to do, plus the addition of wool adds a healthy dose of comfort and warmth.
Each roll of yarn measures 106 yards and weighs 6 oz.
Other Types of Variegated and Multi-Colored Yarn
So now that we’ve gone over the best variegated yarns for each most commonly used material, let’s take a look at some other, slightly more unusual options.
Bamboo is an at times overlooked option when it comes to yarn, mostly because of the high price point.
But if you can get over the steep cost, you will find a material that is straight from nature making it highly sustainable and comes with a wide range of benefits.
This day and age choosing the environmentally friendly option should be a priority whenever possible. The fact that bamboo is biodegradable makes it much better for the environment than most other materials used for yarn.
Add to that the fact that it’s a renewable resource which is safely collected without causing harm to the plant, and grows back quickly, and you’ve got yourself a great, green material.
If that wasn’t enough to convince you, you’ll be pleased to know that bamboo gives your knitting work a high quality aesthetic, and is both soft to work with and as strong as it gets. Bamboo variegated yarn is slightly harder to find online, but don’t be discouraged, it’s worth seeking out.
The other noteworthy absence from this list of variegated yarns is silk. Silk is a very versatile material that works well in all temperatures. Providing relief on hot sunny days, and warmth throughout the colder days.
Besides this, silk is universally recognized for its super soft nature and premium quality. So it can be the perfect yarn choice for a special gift.
Silk is highly hypoallergenic, which means unlikely certain other materials, you aren’t likely to suffer from any kind of allergic reaction to it. Lastly, silk is super absorbent and can dry really quickly. A great benefit for certain things you could make.
Pooling With Variegated Yarn
Pooling is a technique that involves the use of color in crochet projects. Some like it, some don’t. I personally find it to be an enjoyable way of injecting some color and life into whatever the crochet project, and a challenge to keep things interesting.
Pooling can level up your crochet work and add fun detail and life to your crochet work.
To pull this off, you will need to find some variegated yarn that has a repeat color sequence. This way, you’ll know exactly where the color is in the sequence and can plan where to place it in your crochet.
Also, ensure that the length of each color in the yarn is the same. If one color is even just a little bit longer, then this technique becomes a whole lot more difficult to employ.
Of course, in order to use pooling to great effect, it’s worth finding a great tutorial online like the one below by Marly Bird to help you through the process, at least for the first time.
Up Net: 7 Best Yarn Winders And Swifts