Know Your Wool-Yarn/Hook


Last time I made that post on cotton Yarn/thread…..Among the many comments that I got, there were a few queries on the title of that post   –  ‘Yarn Gyan’.

My readers, tell me …we know what yarn is ….but what is Gyan?   Gyan, means knowledge, know how, etc……..:-D!!!

Wool is one of the most commonly used materials to crochet…..considering that this art form emerged from the west..France to be precise….that comes as no surprise.  In the West, they have made an art form of producing wool yarn in zillions of avatars…that wading through them is, though a delicious and delightful proposition….. also very confusing to most crocheters.

Yarn here comes in a multitude of hues, shades, colours, thickness and texture. I will broadly classify here what  I know of  wool as yarn….for Beginners. Once you master these very basic facts….You need to take that journey of discovery alone….because believe me, when I tell you that ….experimenting, with different fibres and hooks may not add pretty projects to your crochet resume in the speed that you wish…cos you will make time consuming mistakes…but the experience you gain is tremendous.


What is Yarn Weight?

Yarn Weight refers to the thickness of yarn used by Crocheters, Knitters, Weavers and other fibre artists.

Broadly wool yarn can be divided into 6 categories.

1. Super Fine:

This is also known as fingering yarn. It is a very light weight Merino wool.

The UK/ Australia follow a  system…..where yarn is differentiated by ply.

It is represented by the emblem below, by the Craft Yarn Council of America in the USA.


So if, super fine is 1 in the USA….it is known as 3ply/4 ply in the UK/Australia

Recommended Hook Sizes:

Size will be B1 to E4( USA) or 2.25mm – 3.5mm(Metric)

Gauge for a 4″x4″ swatch will be between 21 stitches to 32 stitches across.

Super Fine Yarn
Super Fine Yarn


Crochet/ knit  socks, baby wear and other lacey items.

2. Fine or Sport yarn:

This is fine sport weight yarn.

Known as 5ply in UK/AUS

In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.


Recommended Hook Sizes:  Metric 3.5mm – 4.5mm USA Hook Size E4 – E7

Gauge:  For a 4″x 4″ swatch, it would work up between 16 – 20 stitches across


Fine Yarn Fine Yarn


it is great to hook  lacey shawls, wraps accessories, baby items.

3.  Double Knitting(DK)

Also known as Light worsted Yarn. This is baby/ light weight Yarn for garments. In the UK/AUS it is called Double Knit Yarn/ 8ply.

This is a yarn that works well for all categories of crocheters. It is specially good for beginners. It is one of the most popular category of yarn used in the USA.

In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label. Unknown-7

Recommended Hook Size:

Metric 4.5mm – 45.5mm

USA E7 – 19

img_0022_4_5 ROBIN DOUBLE KNIT 100

Gauge: For a 4″x 4″ swatch, it would work up between12- 17 stitches across


For Hats, Fingerless gloves, sweaters, heavier baby Blankets

4. Worsted:

Called medium Worsted/ Afghan/ Aran yarn. This is the most popular od knitting and crocheting yarn in the USA.

In the UK/AUS this is the equivalent of 10ply or Aran weight

In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.



Recommended Hook Sizes: Metric 5.5mm – 6.5mm USA 19 – Size K or 10 and a half

Gauge: For a 4″x 4″ swatch, it would work up between 11 to 14 stitches across

Used: Blankets, Slippers, Adult Garments, Throws, Afghans etc.

5.Bulky : Also Called Chunky/ Rug yarn. It is heavier than Medium Worsted but works up much quicker.

Bulky Weight Yarn in the UK/AUS…13 ply In the USA……it is represented by the symbol below:


Recommended Hook Sizes:

Metric 6.5mm to 9mm

USA 10 and a half (K) to M

In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.

5145Large images-4 images-6

Gauge: For a 4″x 4″ swatch, it would work up between 8 – 11 stitches across Used: Used to hook unique hats, scarves and is good to decorate as well.

6. Super Bulky Weight Yarn:

A very Heavy Yarn, about twice as thick as worsted weight.

UK/USA equivalent to 14 ply.

In the USA…it is represented by the emblem below…and is seen on the yarn label.


big l_f8addc10-4d18-11e1-95b9-6130abe00001

What is the difference between Worsted and Medium Yarn?

It is one and the same. Both are 10ply. Just called by different names.

What is the difference between Worsted and DK yarn?


Worsted is 10 ply and Soft wool or double knitting yarn is 8 ply, thinner and softer. 8 ply is most commonly used in Europe and Australia.

What is the difference between Worsted and  Bulky?

Worsted Wool is  thinner than Bulky ….which is thick.

What is gauge?

Gauge is determined by yarn thickness. When you hook up a swatch the number of stitches in say a 4’x4″ swatch is the gauge of that yarn.

How does one read yarn labels?

Info on a yarn Label
Info on a yarn Label

Tabled Chart from the Craft Council of America showing the yarn weight and hook size to be used for each yarn


What are the factors that affect ur project?

1. Yarn Type

2. Hook Size

3. Individual Tension( How tight or how loose you crochet)

What is Ply?

What is Ply? Ply simply means that when the yarn is spun it is spun by twisting 2/3/4/6/ 8/ etc strands of thread together…….For e.g.: if the yarn has two strands of thread spun in …it is called 2 ply. If it has 6 p strands spun it to make it is called 6 ply. A common mistake to make is to assume that since , 6ply has 6 strands it will be thicker than say a 2ply. this is true only if the individual strand in the said 6 ply and 2 ply is the same. If the individual strand in the 6 ply is very fine then naturally the 6 ply will be thinner than a 2 ply that has much thicker strands spun in.

4 ply
4 ply

So that’s it…………. a basic gyan on Wool. I hope this has been helpful. Most of this information is from different blogs on the internet. The Craft Yarn Council, USA; Blogger Sara Duggan from the blog Crochet & Me…and many other sources. A Big Thank You to Each and Every One of You…….

Namaste……..and May this day be full of love and contentment for you…..


6 thoughts on “Know Your Wool-Yarn/Hook

  1. I live in new Zealand and am trying to crochet hats and converting 8ply to crochet from worsted patterns. We don’t have worsted in nz and I am wanting to use cotton as summer is coming, and the patterns are in wool.
    My 3year old grandaughter has malignant cancer and her hair has now all gone. I have a lot of cotton 4ply and 8ply but unable to find 10ply here. Can you help with size hook to use and do I go up a size? Thank you so much.

    do you have a newsletter?

    1. Hello Colleen,

      First let me apologise for my tardiness in answering your question. I have been away at my parent’s place…both of them are very old and had fallen ill one after the other so I was very busy for the last 6 weeks and didn’t get time to check in here. I am very sorry to hear about your Grand Daughter…I hold her in my thoughts and prayers.

      I am unfamiliar with the yarn used in Australia.The ply alone does not give me an idea of how thick your yarn is….becos you can have fine yarn of 4 ply or even 10 ply where you use a 2:00mm hook size.I usually use a 3:00mm hook for cotton 4 ply….But again the thickness can vary. If your cotton 4 ply is of style craft or DMC or you can use 3:5mm or even 4:00mm, if it is 4ply but is thick like Bali Cotton then you can use 5:00mm. I suggest that you make a gauge out of the yarn you have and see how the size compares to the gauge given the pattern.

      I do not have a Newsletter. These tutorials were made to help member of my crochet group to learn crochet..I wish I could have been more helpful….and hope that all our prayer sfor your precious little baby are answered. Hugs.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s