Part of an ongoing series on yarn characteristics.
The stitch definition ability of the yarn can be critical to the success of many stitch patterns. Other yarn characteristics to take into consideration for good stitch definition are the smoothness or fluffiness of a given yarn. The fluffy nature of mohair and angora tend to obscure stitch patterns. Sometimes fluffiness is also referred to as the yarn having a halo.
Boucle, eyelash, ladder, chenille and slubby yarns will obscure stitch texture.
Very smooth, tightly spun yarns of many plies tend to show stitches the best. Many plies make the yarn rounder which shows texture stitches off better.
Colour can have a large impact on stitch definition, lighter solid colours generally show complex stitches more clearly. Avoid yarns with colour variegation that is highly contrasted with multiple colours.