Types of yarn

Types of yarn

Yarn laying on a table

When it comes to choosing the yarn for your next project, there are two main factors to consider: fiber and weight. The fiber is the material the yarn is made of. The weight is the thickness of the yarn. Depending on the project you want to make, you may need a specific type and weight of yarn.

Yarn fibers

There are many yarn fibers available in the market, here are some of the most common:


This is the most common type of natural yarn fiber. It’s very warm and durable and perfect to make a winter garment. This fiber can be itchy.


This yarn fiber is a little more rigid than the others and shows intricate designs very well. This yarn fiber is also very breathable and perfect for hot weather knitting. Cotton yarn can be a little tricky to work with if you are a beginner.


Acrylic yarn is very cheap and perfect for beginners. This man-made fiber is perfect if you want a cheap and washable yarn fiber option.


Cashmere is very soft and is considered a luxurious yarn. The reason behind is because the process of collecting the yarn is very labor intensive.


This natural fiber comes from the merino sheep and it’s softer than regular wool and doesn’t cause allergic reactions.


Alpaca yarn comes from the South American alpacas. This fiber is soft and warmer than wool but doesn’t hold its shape as well as other fibers.


Silk fiber is an expensive and strong type of yarn. It doesn’t have a lot of stretch and can be very slippery. It’s better for summer garments.

Yarn weights

A yarn thickness is measured by the yarn weight. There are seven common yarn weights:

Lace 0

Lace weight is the thinnest type of yarn. This yarn is better used for light lace shawls.

Super fine 1

Super fine weight is commonly used for socks and shawls. Is slightly thicker than lace yarn.

This weight includes sock and fingering yarns.

Fine 2

Fine weight is perfect for light sweaters, baby items and accessories. This weight includes sport and baby weight yarn.

Light 3

Light weight is used commonly for knitting sweaters and lightweight scarves. This weight includes DK weight and light worsted yarns.

Medium 4

Medium weight yarn is the most popular and common type of yarn. It’s perfect for beginner projects. It is suited for almost every project. This weight includes worsted and aran weight yarn.

Bulky 5

Bulky weight is perfect for rugs, jackets and blankets. It’s a thick yarn and projects tend to be finished faster.

Super bulky 6

Super bulky weight is the thickest of them all. It’s commonly used for heavy blankets, sweaters and rugs.