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How to Size Mystery Yarns in Your Stash

Updated: Mar 1




We all have a selection of leftovers, donations or eagerly wound skeins which have now lost their information sitting in our stash of yarn.


If you are like me then it becomes less likely that I will use this yarn on a new project as I don’t know the weight, correct needle or hook size.


No matter how experienced you are it is highly unlikely that you will be able to tell the yarn weight ‘just by looking’. The image below shows yarn at a variety of weights and you can see how similar they appear.






Here is my quick guide to sizing your Mystery Yarn.


All you need is some yarn and a ruler. If you don’t have a ruler then you can use any solid consistently shaped object, a pencil or pen will be an excellent choice and a tape measure.



All you need to do is wrap your mystery yarn around the ruler (or pen) and count the number of wraps within an inch.


The Wraps Per Inch is a standard sizing system used throughout the yarny world to define the weight of yarn. The thicker the yarn the less times it will fit into an inch, conversely the finer the yarn the higher the wrap count.

I have a video demonstrating this method below.








Here is a table of info for you covering the weight, wrap count and both UK and US needle sizes generally used for each weight.


These are a guide only and you will need to swatch to decide what works best for your tension and knitting/crochet style.