This post was written by Jennifer Dickerson from the Fiber Flux blog.
Have you ever wondered what all of the information on yarn labels means? It can be confusing, but it contains a surprisingly large amount of important things contained in the form of abbreviations and symbols. Here is an easy guide to get you started (the green arrows in the photo below correspond to the numbers on the list):
1. Colorway: This is the name of the color of the yarn. A manufacturer of yarn will make many different styles and each type of yarn has its own variety of colors. Some colorways can have numbered names too.
2. Yarn Weight: Yarn weight is denoted by a number to make selecting yarn even easier. To learn more about yarn weights, check out this standardized chart from the Craft Yarn Council. You can also learn a bit more about choosing the best crochet hook sizes.
3. Yarn Contents: This will tell you what the yarn is made from, whether it be wool, acrylic, cotton, bamboo, etc.
4. Yarn Weight (non-numbered): Some yarn labels will only have a number (see # 2 for more details), but this particular yarn label also indicates the weight here too. This one happens to be worsted, but it could be sport, aran, fingering, etc.
5. Dye Lot: If using more than one ball/skein for a project, be sure that the dye lots match for best results. This particular brand does not have a dye lot, but it will usually be a multi-digit number.
6. Gauge and Recommended Needle/Hooks: These little squares are packed full of helpful information. Using the recommended hook or needle will usually give the indicated gauge found on the square too, but many patterns will depart from the recommended size. Be sure to check your particular pattern before beginning. For a great intro to gauge, check out this article from Lion Brand Yarn.
7. Laundering Instructions: It wasn’t until recently that I learned about all of the seemingly complex laundering symbols for yarn care. It is important to follow the instructions for care to ensure that your knitted or crocheted piece will look its best and last for years to come. Here is a helpful guide from Petals to Picots.
8. Other instructions: This particular yarn label indicates two ways to pull the yarn out for usage. Some (but not all) labels may indicate this too.
I hope this helps you when beginning your next project, happy crocheting and knitting!