Corrina Ferguson

Determining Yarn Weights

Corrina Ferguson
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Duration:   6  mins

Yarn comes in different thicknesses or yarn weights. In this video, Corrina Ferguson shares tips for determining the weight of a yarn. She looks at both the wraps per inch (WPI) as well as the gauge to determine the thickness of the yarn.


There are eight standard yarn weights. They are:

• Lace
• Super Fine
• Fine
• Light
• Medium
• Bulky
• Super Bulky
• Jumbo

Corrina focuses on the seven most common yarn weights in the video.


The wraps per inch of a yarn is determined by wrapping the yarn around a knitting needle and then measuring how many times it wrapped around the needle in a one-inch segment. Corrina demonstrates this with a super bulky yarn and a worsted weight yarn.


The gauge of a yarn is also an important tool for figuring out the weight of a yarn. A small swatch can be worked in Stockinette stitch (knit on Right Side/purl on Wrong Side) and the stitches can be counted to determine the gauge. Corrina demonstrates this on a worsted weight swatch. She counts the stitches over a two-inch segment, which allows her to calculate the stitches per inch.

Wraps per inch and gauge are important tools for determining yarn weight and can help you figure out what type of yarn you have, even if the yarn label is missing.


Get the Wraps Per Inch Cheat Sheet PDF here.


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14 Responses to “Determining Yarn Weights”

  1. Natalie Goldstock

    Six or fewer (not six or less)

  2. Pamela Schecter

    What size needle do you use to figure out WPI? In the demo it looks like you are using a big needle.

  3. margaret

    Very Very Interesting & Knowledgeable. Thank You 🧶

  4. Jackie

    what size needle were you using? It looks like 10 or more?

  5. Judith Strickland

    I wrapped a fingering yarn on a size 4 needle and had 25 wraps. Same yarn on a size 13 needle had 19 wraps. Your response regarding needle size doesn't matter is not entirely accurate, although the result does seem to fall in the same general yarn size range.

  6. Kathryn

    What size needle are you using to determine the wpi?

  7. GARY

    I was wondering the same thing about the needle size. Thanks for the additional information. No need to respond.

  8. LYNNE

    I found the video very helpful. Thank you. I would like to suggest though that it be explained in the video about the sizing question. It would have been easier for everyone if it had been explained at the beginning that it didn't matter what size the object the yarn was wrapped around. I don't think you would of had to explain it so many times. I came to the discussion because I had the same question as everyone else. Thanks again for the video.

  9. Sandra Duncan

    Does it matter what size needle you wrap the yarn around.

  10. Susan Butcher

    What size needle are you using to wrap thread around. Larger needle less wraps around smaller more

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