Paintbox Yarns review and Stylecraft comparision

I compare Paintbox Yarns Aran and Stylecraft Special Aran by looking at colours, strand size, quality and price.

I was recently asked on my Instagram how Paintbox Yarns compares to Stylecraft. I have to know myself as I need more aran yarn to complete a project that I will be starting in Paintbox Yarns.

So, do I purchase Paintbox Yarns Simply Aran again or old faithful, Stylcraft Special Aran?

Here’s my comparison breakdown.

Paintbox Simply Aran comes in 60 colours. For the project in question I chose Light Caramel, Ballet Pink, Vintage Pink, Candyfloss Pink, Blush Pink. I would choose the same colours again and possibly bright peach, vanilla cream and melon sorbet.
Stylecraft Special Aran comes in 30 colours. I would choose the Fondant pink and perhaps cream and parchment to compliment the colours I already have. I would be struggling to continue with the same colour scheme as I originally planned.
WINNER: Paintbox

Strand Size
Paintbox aran 100g has a yardage of 184m to Stylecraft Aran’s 196m so I expected Paintbox to be slightly thicker. From the few rows I’ve worked up on another project the yarn is very even.
Stylecraft aran is probably slightly smoother but sometimes uneven within the same ball and between colours and batches.
WINNER: Paintbox

Paintbox aran is slightly fluffier than some yarns, but no means the worst. It can be a little splitty and squeaky when frogged but again, not the worst aran I’ve used at all. The overall squishiness and softness of the yarn is certainly a redeeming factor.
Stylecraft aran at its best is smoother, silkier and feels plump and luxurious to work with however at its worst is straggly, thin and splitty, sometimes in the same ball of yarn. This lack of consistency once again sees Paintbox as the winner.
WINNER: Paintbox

Price and Availability
Paintbox Simply Aran is available exclusively from and
The regular price is £2.25 for 100g ball, however they have discounted colour packs and value packs, as well as regular offers. I bought mine recently for 30% off which works out at £1.58 a ball.
Stylecraft Special Aran is available online and in many local yarn shops (LYS). It retails for between £1.74 on Wisebadger to £2.09 on Deramores for 100g ball with every price point in between.
WINNER: Stylecraft, unless Paintbox is on offer.

Overall Winner: Paintbox Yarns Simply Aran

Note: Paintbox yarns promote themselves very well on Instagram and their colour offerings are simply amazing, however don’t worry if you have Stylecraft Sepcial Aran in your stash or can get it easily at your LYS. Sometimes you just need an extra ball to finish a project and nothing beats a trip to your LYS.

Having said all that, I will be purchasing Paintbox Yarns Simply Aran to finish this particular project as I love my chosen colour palette.

Paintbox Yarns Aran

What do you prefer?



My Patterns on Ravelry

    Latest on Instagram


    1. November 23, 2016

      I used Paintbox aran in a recent project and another reason it was better than Stylecraft aran is that it has no knots – win!

      • mm
        November 23, 2016

        Thanks Jean! Yes that is definitely another win for Paintbox. I love your v stich blanket, so colourful and fun.

    2. Shaena
      May 12, 2017

      How well does this yarn wash? Paintbox comes in colors I have in mind for a project but I’ve read it doesn’t wash well & gets a halo & pills really bad.

      • mm
        July 17, 2017

        Hi, sorry I only just realised I had a question! It does have a halo before washing. I’m not sure about pills, I’ve hand washed my daughter’s poncho a few times and always use fabric conditioner and it has washed fine. Sorry I can’t be much help, I think it’s one of those things that is quite subjective 🙂

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *