View Full Version : Need help with weights

03-11-2005, 11:02 PM
Ok, so I found this cotton but I need DK weight... I don't understand how there system goes. Would any of these work?


03-11-2005, 11:51 PM

This shows the actual size of the yarns if u have some dk weight lying around to compare it... hope this helps...otherwise i dont understand their system either.

03-12-2005, 12:09 AM
Ok I think *THINK* if I am reading this right that it is 4/8???


Someone help because these prices seem to good.

03-12-2005, 02:36 AM
Hi Nuno, I'm just now trying to figure out yarn weights myself :?? . They do say 4/8 is DK weight but when I do the math I come up with it being more of a sport/baby weight (23 - 26 sts/inch). This is some info I copied from an internet site somewhere. Hope it helps you.

We have all seen yarn advertized, usually for weaving and on cones, with thicknesses quoted as 2/8 or 3/10. What does this mean?
First you have to realize that there are a number of systems.
The metric is easiest, so let's discuss that first. A metric figure will be given as 2/8 nm. One nm equals 1,000 metres of yarn per kilogram (1,000 m/kg). Thus a 1 nm yarn will contain 1000 metres per kilogram, or 50 metres in 50 grams. A 1/8 nm yarn means that the yarn has been spun 8 times longer than the standard (and therefore finer), and you will therefore get 8,000 metres per kilogram.
The first number is the number of plies. Thus a 2/8 yarn has two plies. The 8 means that the basic yarn was spun to 8,000 m/kg, but it was then spun into a 2 ply, and so it now has only 4,000 m/kg. A 3/8 will have 2,666 m/kg.
With the metric system, 1 nm always equals 1,000 m/kg, regardless of the yarn fibre.
Not so with the imperial system. First you have to determine the fibre. A count of one gives the number of yards per pound, but it depends on the yarn. See the table below.

YARN Yards per Pound
Wool - Woolen Measure 256
Wool - Worsted 560
Linen 300
Cotton 840
Spun Silk 840

Worsted wool is nothing to do with worsted weight yarn. Worsted wool is wool which is carded and combed so that all the fibres are parallel. Woolen measure or Yorkshire wool is carded but not combed, so is a little rougher. Worsted wool is usually very fine and used for suits and fine fabric. Hand knitting yarn is usually woolen type yarn. When quoting wool some manufacturers specify "worsted" or "woolen". Most do not!
Getting complicated isn't it? So lets say we have a hand knitting woolen yarn with an count of 3/8. The 8 means it is spun 8 times longer than standard, or 8 x 256 = 2,048 yards per pound (2,048 yds/lb) The 3 means it is 3 ply, so the finished yarn has 2,048/3 = 682 yards per pound. This is a chunky weight yarn (roughly). A 2/10 yarn will have 2,560 yds/lb divided by 2 plies = 1,280 yds/lb. This will be in the DK to worsted weight range.
Now, cottons have a base count of 840 yds/lb. Just to complicate matters, cotton is usually quoted with the count first and the ply last! (Nobody said this would be easy!) So a 10/2 cotton will have 8,400 yds/lb divided by 2 plies = 4,200 yds/lb. This is a "three ply baby" type weight.
Finally, you have to remember that hand knitting yarns vary a lot in weight per yard, from brand to brand, and type to type. For example a superwash wool is heavier than a regular wool. With this in mind we can produce a table for various counts of wool.
Wool Count Yds/lb Approximate Hand Knitting Equivalent
3/30 2,560 Baby ("Three Ply")
2/20 2,560 Baby ("Three Ply")
4/30 1,920 "Four Ply" Fingering
2/15 1,920 "Four Ply" Fingering
2/10 1,280 DK to Worsted Weight
3/10 853 Aran
3/8 682 Chunky

03-12-2005, 02:38 AM
And here's another article I saved on my puter:

Yarn Size Explanation

Usually the yarns available to weavers are labeled with the size as well as the weight. Ads will say 3 pound cones of 8/2, etc. By knowing the yarn is an 8/2 you can calculate how much yarn is in a pound using the info below. This is some info on yarn sizing I have posted before:

The numbers represent the size of the yarn and the number of plies. For yarns of cotton and linen, in the USA, the size is given first, followed by the number of plies. The British system places the ply number first followed by the size. Different fibers have different numbering systems. The size number is an indicator of the yards per pound for that particular fiber.
Number 1 cotton, for example, has 840 yards per pound. The yardage per pound increases as the size number increases. Consequently, a number 5 cotton will have 5 times the yardage per pound as a number 1 cotton. To calculate the yardage multiply 5 x 840. The answer is 4200; therefore a number 5 cotton contains 4200 yards per pound. A 5/2 yarn is two strands of number 5 cotton plied together. Due to plying the quantity of fiber in one yard has now increased; consequently the yardage per pound will decrease. To figure the yardage, multiply the size number by 840 as above, and divide by the number of plies. 5 x 840 = 4200. 4200 divided by 2 = 2400. The 5/2 cotton contains 2400 yards per pound. Since the original measurement is done on a single strand of yarn, and plying takes away some of that length, estimate about 5% loss due to plying. In the end, the 5/2 cotton yarn will have about 2280 yards per pound.
Worsted wools are measured on an entirely different system. Worsteds are usually measured at 560 yards per pound for a one-count yarn. The method of figuring the plies is the same as the cotton system, but in worsteds, the ply number is first and the size second. A single strand of number one worsted carries 560 yards per pound. A number 5 then would have 2800 yards per pound. A 2 ply number 5 would contain 1400 yards per pound and when the 5% loss is calculated would ultimately contain 1330 yards per pound and carry a label of 2/5.
Linen can use yet another system of measurement. The count system is based on size called a lea. One lea is the size of a yarn spun to 300 yards from 1 pound of linen flax. A 10-lea linen would have 3,000 yards per pound etc. Linens are numbered as cottons, with the yarn size first and the ply number second.
There is a fourth system, not really widely used anymore in the handweaving world, but useful to know about - The Tex system. It is more the standard in Scandinavia. TEX refers to the number of grams per 1000 meters of any yarn. TEX numbers vary with the kind and weight of yarns, but the 1000 meter number remains consistent. Thick yarns will require more grams per 1000 meters than thin. Single ply yarns require less. TEX 680 would mean that particular yarn requires 680 grams to = 1000 meters of yarn. TEX 350 x 2 would indicate a 2 ply yarn.

Warp requirements can be calculated using the following equation:

L = length in meters
W = width in centimeters
S = number of threads/centimeter
TEX = TEX number

L x W x S x TEX
_____________ = TOTAL number of grams used for warp
1000 meters

Example: 4.5 m x 150 cm x 4 threads/cm x TEX 620 = 1674 grams or 1.7 Kilo necessary for warp.