All yarn come with a band on them giving you invaluable information. But do you know what it all means?
Yarn weight and thickness – all yarn is categorised by how thick it is. They vary from 0 to 6 and are shown on the band by an image of a ball of yarn with a number on it. I will go into more detail about this scale in a later blog.
Recommended needle size – this is by no means set in stone. You do not have to use the needle size stated on the ball band. This is just a guide to help you get the correct tension.
Tension – the tension is usually given as a square. It will state how many stitches and how many rows will create a 4inch or 10cm square. It is usually better to knit a swatch much bigger than this and to measure the tension in the middle. I have written an earlier blog about tension squares.
Washing instructions – these will tell you if you have to hand wash garments made from this yarn or if they can be machine washed. If they can go in the machine it will give you a guide temperature.
Drying instructions – some yarns will tell you if they can be tumble dried. The symbol with a cross through it means it cannot go in the dryer. The other symbols will tell you which setting. One dot for low, two for medium and three for high.
Ironing instructions – you may be able to iron items made from some yarns. A picture of an iron with a cross through it means you can’t, one dot means iron on low, two for medium and three for high. Sometimes you will see a picture of an iron with steam at the bottom which may or may not be crossed out. This will tell you whether or not to use steam when ironing finished items.