These are the two most popular and widely available styles of yarn swift, but which one is the best? Like many things, it comes down to personal preference, how much space you have, and what you’re willing to spend.
In the simplest sense, the Amish style is a tabletop one, and the umbrella swift clamps to a surface.
In this post, I give a complete rundown of both styles, and the best models available for each style.
Table Of Contents
- What Is A Swift for Yarn?
- Wood Vs Metal Umbrella Swift
- Amish Swift Vs Umbrella Swift – The Differences & Similarities
- The Best Amish Swift
- Stanwood Needlecraft Tabletop Amish Style Swift
- CHIAOGOO Amish Design Wooden Yarn Swift
- The Best Umbrella Swift
- Stanwood Wooden Umbrella Yarn Swift
- Schacht Swift
What Is A Swift for Yarn?
A swift for yarn is a helpful tool, most commonly used in conjunction with a yarn winder to help wind yarn from a hank or skein into a neat yarn cake.
Yarn cakes are easier to knit with, and is much less prone to becoming a tangled mess of a yarn monster when you try to knit from it!
Wood Vs Metal Umbrella Swift
- The obvious one has got to be the material, metal ones are usually made of aluminum, and wood ones made of hardwoods like birch or maple
- Metal ones are generally cheaper
- Though wooden ones typically last longer and are more hard-wearing
- They’re also a bit more expensive to maintain, but they look lovely
- Metal ones usually combine metal and plastic
- They can be any style of the yarn swift
- They’re all available in varying price ranges and sizes
Amish Swift Vs Umbrella Swift – The Differences & Similarities
Here is a quick rundown of the similar and different qualities of these two styles.
- The amish sits flat on a tabletop, while the other clamps to a surface
- Generally, an umbrella swift is more comfortable to assemble and less bulky
- It’s also usually easier to storage
- The umbrella expands out to fit any size of yarn, while the Amish have adjustable pegs to suit different sizes
- The Amish don’t require a clamp, less likely to damage a surface
- Some find an umbrella one more comfortable to use
- Amishes can generally hold larger hanks than the other option
- They’re both designed to hold the skein or hank while you wind it
- They both spin on a flat axis
- They’re available in a wide variety of materials, from plastic and metal to a hardwood
- All sorts of price ranges to suit every budget
Kristine Kelly from Ewe University gives an in-depth rundown of the two styles plus the vertical yarn swift, which you can watch by clicking here.
The Best Amish Swift
Stanwood Needlecraft Tabletop Amish Style Swift
Thought Stanwood is predominantly known for its umbrella style swifts, this model is made with the same quality, attention to detail, and made of the same hardwood. An excellent tabletop yarn swift.
- Made of solid wood
- Smooth surface, sanded and polished
- Holds skeins between 2 1/2 – 6 ft of the circumference
- Non-slip pads to stop it moving accidentally
- Easy assembly and disassembly
- Convenient storage
- Spins very smoothly
- Has a bit of friction when spinning
- Squeaks occasionally, but not enough to be annoying
CHIAOGOO Amish Design Wooden Yarn Swift
Made by Chiaogoo, the company known for their excellent range of needles, also make this superb quality swift made with solid wood. One of the many excellent choices available on the market for wooden yarn swifts.
- Made completely of wood
- Designed to last for years
- Suitable for a permanent or temporary home setup
- Four adjustable pegs to hold a wide variety of hank sizes
- Has non-skid pads to prevent accidental slipping
- Quick and easy assembly
- Spins smoothly and quietly
- On the cheaper end
- Not sturdy
- Makes a squeaking noise occasionally
- Can be a little scuffed when it arrives
The Best Umbrella Swift
Stanwood Wooden Umbrella Yarn Swift
This Stanwood umbrella is one of the most popular models of yarn swift and considered by many to be one of the best yarn swifts. Entirely made of solid birch, this is a smooth, quiet workhorse.
- Made of finely sanded and polished birch
- Holds a skein of up to 6 ft in circumference
- Clamp fits surfaces of up to 1 3/4 inches thick
- Excellent quality materials and craftmanship
- Requires hardly any assembly
- Efficient and timesaving
- Lasts a long time
- A little expensive
- Limited capacity of thickness it can clamp to
- Sometimes the screw is faulty, but Stanwood will promptly replace it
- Sometimes the umbrella can slip if you don’t secure it tightly enough
Made with heavy-duty materials and attention to detail, this is a workhorse that is smooth and quiet. Designed to last for years, this is very well worth the investment.
- Made with both wood and metal
- Features a ball bearing for super-smooth spinning
- Holds a yarn hank of up to 93″ in circumference
- The adjustable clamp should fit most surfaces
- Stable and super sturdy
- Super smooth when winding yarn
- A little heavy and bulky
- Requires quite a bit of assembly
- Takes up a bit of room, so it would be difficult to store
- A little expensive
Hopefully, this comparison of these two styles of yarn swifts helped you decide which one is best for you. In the end, it’s up to what suits you best. I hope you find the right one perfect for your needs.
Which one do you prefer, and why?