Punch needle embroidery has been the needlework rage for a while now. As all good craft enthusiasts, armed with brand new punch needle tools, you’ve no doubt given it a go and punched your first creations. With the basics under your belt, it’s time to branch out. But what makes a great punch needle yarn? Which is the perfect punch needle yarn for making the ultimate sofa cushion, wall hanging, cuddly toy or even a rug? Once again, we’ve got your back! So, grab a cup of tea or coffee, sit down comfortably, and let us take you through all you need to know about choosing the right yarn for punch needlework!
Before we dive into the wonderful world of punch needle yarn, here are a few quick do’s and don’ts to help make sure your punch needle slides smoothly through your fabric.
How do you needle punch with yarn?
Needle punching is an embroidery technique. Using a special punch needle tool threaded with yarn or embroidery thread, you pierce (or ‘punch’) through your fabric, pulling the yarn through, then pull the punch needle back out, leaving a loop on the back of your work. You repeat this movement across your fabric to create a picture or pattern. Needle punching is a great handicraft technique that produces quick results; very satisfying! So, what are our top tips for punch needle success?
Choose a foundation fabric that suits the thickness of your yarn. A looser weave, like monk’s cloth, will help thicker yarn glide through smoothly.
Use the correct punch needle tool for the thickness of your yarn.
Keep an eye on the thread tension. Make sure that it’s always on point! Not too loose and not too tight. It would be such a shame to lose all that hard work if it all pulls out in one go.
Stick it or lose it! Yes, always glue your work in place, otherwise you risk pulling the whole piece out. So, when you’ve finished with your needle punching, set the yarn on the back in place with some fabric glue. You're welcome! ;)
Which yarn is suitable for needle punching?
Not all the yarns in our assortment make good choices for punch needlework. Why? For needle punching you need more textured yarn. These are yarns with a bit more volume, which have a rougher structure while being, at the same time, robust and springy; these characteristics together ensure that the yarn stays in place in the cloth. For example, thick cotton is a 'no-no' because it’s less pliable and doesn't spring back into shape well. ‘What then, Yarnplaza?', you ask yourself. Grab a pen and some paper (or your notepad on your phone or computer), and jot this down!
Thicker, chunkier yarn
If you generally like working with somewhat bulkier, more robust yarn, or if you’d like to have a go with them for a change, then some great options are Rico Essentials Mega Wool Chunky, Drops Nepal, Drops Alaska and Phildar Phil Looping; any and all of these would make a fine yarn for your next punch needle project!
(Thinner) softer yarn
If finer, softer yarns are more your thing, then that’s okay too! There’s no shortage of lovely yarn that would also work really well for you. Rico, for example, has a brilliant range of yarns that are ideal for punching with. This includes their Rico Essentials (Mega Merino, Soft Merino and the Soft Merino Aran) and Rico Creative (Sport DK and Soft Wool Aran), as well as the Rico Sticktwist embroidery floss; the latter is best kept for all your extra fine punch needle projects.
If Katia has stolen your heart, then you’ll absolutely love the Katia Merino Aran. This yarn is wonderfully soft and comes in a gorgeous range of colors. Coming up with the perfect color combination is as easy as pie! If you can narrow down your choices, that is! :)
And finally, here’s one last yarn tip for creating beautiful punch needlework: Why not give Yarn and Colors Happy a go? A super soft, supple yarn made from a blend of wool, polyamide and acrylic with ‘versatile’ as its middle name! Indeed, Happy yarn is not just a great punch needle yarn. It’s also fantastic to use for knitting and crocheting clothing, accessories and items for your home! You could say that Happy yarn is truly a yarn that… makes you happy! :)
So, which yarn will you use for your new punch needle project?
Share your lovely punch needlework with us via our Facebook page or on Instagram with #yarnplaza!