How to Wind a Hank of Yarn

If you buy yarn in hanks, you must wind that hank of yarn into a ball to prevent tangling. Winding hanks of yarn is pretty easy, but if you have lots of hanks to wind, ask at your yarn store if it offers a winding service.

1

Carefully unfold the hank (it’s formed into a large circle) and drape it over a chair back.

You can also place it over a friend’s outstretched arms — or your bent knees if you’re sitting.

2

Locate the ends of the yarn.

If they’re tied, then cut or unknot them.

3

Wrap the yarn in a figure eight around the thumb and little finger of your hand several times to make a butterfly shape.

Make about 20 passes if you’re winding a medium-weight yarn; make more passes for a finer yarn or fewer for a thick yarn. Stay loose: Be sure not to stretch the yarn as you wind.

4

Take the "wings" off your finger and thumb, and fold the butterfly in half, holding it between thumb and fingers.

This folded butterfly becomes the center of your yarn ball.

5

Continue wrapping yarn loosely around the folded butterfly (and your fingers).

Keep wrapping until the package gets bulky.

6

Slip the yarn off your fingers, turn the ball, and continue to wrap the yarn.

Neatness isn’t important. Looseness is. Always wrap the yarn around as many fingers as you can, slipping them out when you change position. The space they take up will ensure that the yarn isn’t stretched while it waits to be knitted.

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