We have assembled a list of all tensions (or gauge) which are known to
us. If you find one which is not on this list, please let us know. All
tensions listed below are in stocking stitch unless otherwise stated.
The Craft Yarn Council of America symbols for
yarn weights can be
seen at this link.
We recommend that you knit a tension swatch before you start on any new
yarn. This may save you a lot of time later. A swatch should be at least
six inches square, and blocked before you measure it.
We have also included a table of wraps. This is a technique
for determining the thickness of the yarn, and therefore the gauge or tension the
yarn should knit to.
Either 32 stitches and 40 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 3 1/4 mm (US 3) needle, or
34 stitches and 42 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 3 1/4 mm (US 3) needle, depending
upon the manufacturer. Check the ball band and pattern.
32 stitches and 40 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 3 1/4 mm (US 3) needle.
28 stitches and 36 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 3 1/4 mm (US 3)needle.
In the US the term 4-Ply is used for Knitting Worsted.
Check your pattern carefully to determine which yarn you need.
Used in Australia and New Zealand. 26 stitches to 10 cm (4 inches) on a 3.75 mm (US 5) needle.
See also Quickerknit
Used in Australia and New Zealand for Double Knitting or DK.
Used in Australia and New Zealand for Worsted Weight Yarn.
Used in Australia and New Zealand. 17 to 18 stitches to 10 cm (4 inches) on a 5 to 5.5 mm (US 8 to 9)
needle. See Aran.
18 stitches and 24 rows to 10 cm (4 inches) on a 5 mm (US 8) needle.
Some knitters use Knitting Worsted instead, but check your tension carefully first!
Usually used to refer to 3-Ply but check the tension on the pattern first.
14 stitches and 19 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 6 mm (US 10) needle.
15 stitches and 20 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 6 mm (US 10) needle. In the UK
what is referred to as a chunky is what North Americans call a Bulky. Again
check your pattern and tension carefully.
22 stitches and 30 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 4 mm (US 6) needle.
Usually a Four Ply Fingering Weight.
20 stitches and 26 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 4 1/2 mm (US 7) needle.
Mohair generally knits up as a Chunky but some mohairs
knit slightly different, so check your pattern and tension first!
26 stitches to 10 cm (4 inches) on a 3.75 mm (US 5) needle. Popular yarn in
the UK, mainly for baby and toddler outfits. Not generally available in North America.
24 stitches and 34 rows to 10 cm. (4 inches) on a 3 3/4 mm (US 5) needle. Some yarns
such as Astra knit up as Sports weight or a Double Knit.
It should be possible to interchange these two weights, but check your tension first!
If you have some yarn without its band, and need to know the tension or gauge
of the yarn, the wrapping method is an indication of the thickness of the yarn.
Wrap the yarn around a large needle or a ruler. Make sure the yarn lays flat.
Push the yarn together so there are no gaps between wraps. Smooth it out so it
is not loose, but it must not be pulled tight either. Measure the number of wraps
in one inch or 2.5 cm. Measure the wraps at the centre of your sample, not at the
ends. In the example shown, measure the number of wraps between 16 and 17 inches on
the tape. Using the table below, determine the approximate gauge of the yarn. Always
knit a tension swatch to confirm your measurements.
Do not use this method for loose or fluffy yarns such as mohair. Mohair
yarn has a very fine core, and a loose fluffy body, so will give incorrect results
using the wrap method.
|Wraps per Inch
||5 to 6
||16 to 18
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