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Types of Yarn | A Guide To Yarn Types and Different Types of Yarn

Looking for the best yarn for knitting your various projects? I cover all the different types of yarn. I’ve included pictures of them as well.

The yarn images featuring balls of yarn, along with skeins and hanks, give you some idea of the texture and quality.

Multicolored hanks of yarn

Choosing yarn is such fun! The photos of yarn make you want to add more to your yarn stash! Just looking at these yarn balls makes me want to knit!

I explain the yarn weights family categories and share the types of yarn for knitting with pictures. With each, I explain what knitting projects best suit.

As always, if I forgot anything, please let me know down in the comments. I would love you to share any tips you have about the fibers you love.🙂

In this post, I share the different types of yarn and yarn weights.

There are so many types of yarn, whether they’re from an animal or a plant. The textures of each and how they knit up vary.

I often hear knitters say when they look at yarn and hold it, it speaks to them. The yarn inspires project ideas and fires up the desire to get something knitted.

Enjoy getting to know some of these different types of fiber.

I updated this post on 29th of November 2021.

Table of Contents


Wonderful Fibers To Explore


Wool Yarn in different colors. Wool Yarn is great for winter garments.

Wool yarn is great for winter garments. It’s warm, and it lasts a long time. A popular natural yarn fiber out there in the craft world.

It’s itchy for some people if they have allergies to kinds of wool. Wool is easily cleaned and keeps you warm even in the rain!

Types of Wool Yarn. There are four different types.

  • Wool Type Fine
  • Wool Type Medium
  • Wool Type Long
  • Wool Type Double – coated.

Types of fine wool yarn such as merino which yarn fibers are soft. Wool’s warmth is a praised characteristic by knitters.

Pure new wool/virgin wool is made from animal fleece yarn fibers and not recycled from existing wool garments.

Shetland wool comes from the small and hardy native sheep of Scotland’s Shetland Islands. Icelandic wool is a rustic, soft yarn ball. Washable wool is treated to destroy the outer fuzzy layer of fibers.

Ideal for: Winter and Summer. It’s great for making scarves, sweaters, gloves, hats, socks, other clothes, blankets, and an afghan.

Two popular yarns are Budget and Luxury.

Fun Facts

  • Wool has many great properties, but one of the best is it keeps you cool in even the hottest of climates.
  • Every major league baseball contains wool grown at a small mill in Massachusetts.
  • Wool yarn fibers has natural fire extinguishing properties, hence why it’s included in fire blankets. Other different types of yarn don’t have this property.

Learn About Types of Yarn

YouTube video


wo Balls of Cream Colored Cashmere Wool with straight knitting needles.

Cashmere is one of the softest wool and yarn types around. It comes from the Cashmere Goats and several other breeds of goats. The word Cashmere comes from the old spelling of the old State of Kashmir in South Asia.

This luxury yarn is among the softest and woolliest on this list. It makes a great Christmas gift for knitters if the receiver is someone special!

However, it’s not as strong as sheep fiber, and it’s also expensive.


Cashmere Goats shed their undercoat once a year. The undercoat is closer to the skin and must be separated from the outer hair. It comes from the animals’ mid-side and back, not their bellies.

Unlike sheep who are shorn, the goat’s undercoat is combed and collected, which is labor-intensive. The yield of fiber from one goat is about 4 ounces once processed.

It takes the fibers collected from four goats to make a sweater. A knitting yarn to be treasured.

Ideal For: It’s soft and not itchy, so it’s ideal for knitting clothing. (Jumpers, socks, gloves, etc.)

Two recommended options: affordable and high quality

Knit Picks Stylish Storage

Fun Facts:

  • Cashmere fiber is six times finer compared to human hair.
  • 60% of the world’s cashmere is produced in China, Mongolia, and Tibet.


Alpaca Yarn in blues and lime green. Alpaca is a super warm fiber perfect for knitting sweaters.

Alpaca yarns are a super warm fiber perfect for knitting sweaters. Alpacas are often mistaken for Llamas.

Alpaca is natural wool from the South-American Alpaca. There are two types of Alpaca yarn, Huacaya, and Suri. This yarn type is soft, almost silky, but it doesn’t hold its shape as well as wool does.

It’s more expensive and luxurious than regular wool.

I knitted a lace cowl from baby alpaca wool, and it was a delight to knit with and soft. Wearing the cowl was lovely as it didn’t feel itchy at all.

Unfortunately, I gathered up my laundry and placed it in the washing machine, unaware my cowl was also in the pile. My cowl was felted.

It destroyed the feature of the lace pattern. Still soft but nothing like its former glory. A reminder to always check the yarn label for care instructions.

An alpaca blend is a good choice for adding softness to a project.

Ideal For: As mentioned before, Alpaca is soft and a little warmer than wool. Those qualities make it ideal for knitted winter items.

Suggested yarns: Economical and Top Quality.

Fun Facts:

  • Did you know Alpaca fiber is water repellent?
  • It’s also difficult to make it catch fire!
  • They are some of the cutest fiber-producing animals.

Merino Wool

Merino Wool Yarn is a very popular in extreme knitting. Knitting big chucky items.

Merino Wool Yarn is popular in extreme knitting. Knitting big chunky items. It also comes from sheep, but from a specific breed, called the Merino Sheep.

This wool is unique because it’s soft and doesn’t cause allergic reactions. Merino Wool knitted fabric keeps its shape well when blocked. Merino creates little fuzzballs known as ‘pilling,’ which is a little annoying.

If you have a chance to use Merino wool, though, such as Cascade Yarn – 100% Superwash Merino Wool, go for it!

Merino wool varies in yarn thickness and is packaged as a skein.

Ideal for: Merino Wool is great for making winter woolies for that special someone. Perfect for knitted socks and baby clothes. Jumbo Merino Yarn is the type for extreme knitting.

Fun Fact: Merino Wool fibers withstand being bent back on themselves 20,000 times without breaking! The yarn structure is impressive.

Suggestions: Cost-effective and Superior Quality.

Looking for the best place to buy yarn online? See my guide.

Organic Yarn

Organic Yarn stored in a raffia box of different greys and creams. Organic Yarn is not chemically treated.

Organic yarn is produced from wool free from chemicals. Sourced from sheep with no synthetic inputs. The livestock has not been through dips, drenches, back lining, or antibiotics.

The cleaning process of Organic wool yarns includes using hot water and detergent.

Ideal for: Many organic yarns are from the Merino Sheep. This wool is excellent for winter knitted garments.

Fun Fact: Organic Yarn means it comes from healthy, happy sheep, and it’s good for the environment.

Popular Choices: Low cost and Luxury


Cotton Yarn in shades of pinks, greens and yellows. Perfect for knitting warmer weather tops and tanks.

Cotton comes from the cotton plant. It’s grown in warm climates, the biggest producers being India, the USA, and China.

It’s light, breathable, and strong. There are different types of cotton yarn, some fine, some heavier. It doesn’t hold its shape when blocking, and your stitches won’t look as uniform.

It has little elasticity and is available in an amazing range of colors.

Ideal for: Cotton is light and breathable. Making it the perfect choice for dream summer knits, dishcloths, potholders, and scrubbies. Knitting or crocheting cotton creates lovely fabrics, a good choice for baby blankets.

Summer projects knitted with a cotton and linen blend have a lovely drape.

To learn new knitting stitches, I have created lots of dishcloths using cotton yarn from different countries I have visited.

They have been super fun to do, and the knitting practice gives me the confidence to take on bigger projects with interesting designs.

The finished knitted dishcloths also made the perfect gifts to the wonderful people I have met on my travels.

Fun Fact

  • Cotton absorbs up to 27 times its weight in water! Watch out if you have a knitted cotton swimsuit!
  • Cotton is the best yarn for amigurumi

Recommendations: Budget and High Quality.


Silk Yarn skeins of various shades of yellow. Silk Yarn is perfect for summer knits

There are different types of silk yarn – Reeled silk yarn and spun silk yarn. It’s easy to work with but slippery. Make sure you know what you’re doing before commencing a project with silk yarn.

Silk is the most expensive and lustrous fiber on our list. It’s strong, shiny, and has a lovely feel on the skin. It doesn’t have much stretch.

There are some magical silk blends on the market, such as merino, silk, and cashmere.

Ideal For: Strong, shiny, and cool, the perfect yarn for summer items.

Fun Fact:

  • Strong as steel in the tensile sense, silk is the strongest natural fiber known to humans!

Popular suggestions: Lower-cost and Luxurious quality.

Hemp Yarn

Hemp Yarn in multiple self striping colors. Hemp Yarn makes lovely shawls.

Hemp, a relative newcomer to the knitting world, is a delightful natural fiber. Hemp is soft to the touch. It’s hard-wearing and has a great stitch definition. It’s strong and sturdy but with flexibility.

Certain hemp has an appearance similar to twine. Known for its use in macrame.

Ideal For: Boot socks, Fisherman type sweaters, coats, scrubbies

Fun Fact: Hemp plants produce 250% more fiber than cotton.

Recommendations: Budget and High Quality

Bamboo Yarn

Bamboo Yarn in shades of pink on double pointed needles. Bamboo Yarn is soft and lightweight.

Bamboo is a natural fiber. It wears well and is often considered to have natural antibacterial properties. It feels soft and has a wonderful drape.

The surface of a finished bamboo yarn project can pill.

Ideal For: Knitted garments requiring drape. Bamboo yarn is breathable and cool. It’s perfect for summer garments such as summer tops and sweaters.

Fun Fact: Bamboo is softer than silk when spun into yarn.

Popular choices: Economical and Top quality.


Acrylic Yarn in balls of pink, green and white. Acrylic yarn is a great choice for beginner knitters as it is less expensive than wool.

Acrylic yarn is a human-made, synthetic fiber and is much cheaper than most natural fibers. This yarn washes easily is color-fast and is a great choice for amateur knitters. Many acrylic yarns are worsted weight.

It is available in different yarn weights such as Sport and DK.

Different types of Sashay Yarn and Caron yarn are types of acrylic yarn. Once you’ve gained a bit more experience, though, it’s better to use natural fibers.

Ideal for: Beginners Knitters attempting their first projects like scarves. 100% acrylic is the type of yarn for yarn braids.

Fun Facts

  • Moths, oils, chemicals, and sunlight don’t like your Acrylic yarn clothes! No more holes in your clothes!
  • Heat melts this yarn, it can’t be ironed
  • This yarn is perfect for multi-color yarn braids.

Recommendations: Budget and Premium.

Novelty Yarns

Novelty Yarn Eyelash in pink with knitting needles.

Novelty Yarn comes in a variety of colors and textures and adds interest to a knitted garment. Yarns are made of synthetic fibers, these yarn blends. Novelty yarns provide texture and interest.

Common types of Novelty Yarns:

  • Bouclé: Loopy and bumpy. The loops are large or small.
  • Chenille: Velvety and smooth. Tricky to knit with.
  • Thick-thin: A finished knitted item using this yarn have thick and thin sections, which gives a bumpy look.
  • Faux fur: Super Fluffy fiber strands on a strong base thread of nylon. The finished knitted item looks like faux fur.
  • Railroad ribbon: As the name suggests, this yarn has tiny “tracks” of fiber strung between two parallel strands of thread.

Ideal For: Great for adding interest and texture to your knitted projects

Yarn Suggestions: Economical and Top Quality

Types of Polyester Yarn: Polyester Yarn is in wool/cotton/and blends of yarn. Many novelty yarns and bulky yarns are polyester yarns.

Glow in the dark: Companies over the years have made this yarn and then stopped making it. Create your own. There are methods published on the internet.

Types of Ribbon Yarn: Ribbon yarn, a novelty yarn, is made from various materials. Anything from rayon and nylon to cotton, but it looks and feels like a craft ribbon.

Ideal For: Ribbon yarn is excellent for accessories like belts and headbands, even bags. Be warned; Ribbon Yarn loves to twist and spin when being knitted.

Not So Fun Fact: Novelty yarns are difficult to knit with.


Mohair Yarn in lilac knitted up on circular needles. Mohair Yarn makes soft, warm knitted sweaters and scarves.

Mohair is soft and made from the hair of the Angora Goat. It’s durable, resistant, and shiny. Not to be confused with the Angora Rabbit, which the wool Angora wool comes from.

Mohair has excellent insulating and moisture evaporation properties. It is a season all-rounder. Mohair is a luxury fiber, making it more expensive than ordinary wool.

Ideal For: Mohair is for summer and winter. Some people find it to be itchy.

Fun Facts:

  • Did you know Mohair Fiber’s nickname is Diamond Fiber? This is due to its high luster and sheen.
  • Mohair is a good yarn for dyeing!

Recommended Choices: Low cost and Luxury

Self Striping Yarn

Self Striping Yarn in yellow, blue and purple. Sock being knitted on double pointed needles.

Self-striping yarns have multiple colors spun together in unique ways for different effects. The manufacturing process for dyeing yarns has evolved, so the yarn is dyed in patterns.

“Self-striping” yarn, also known as “painterly” yarn colors, change color as you knit or crochet. The result is a knitted project with stripes of color.

Depending on the self-striping yarn used, the color changes are subtle or bold. For example, some may knit up to look like a Fair Isle pattern. I loved knitting socks with wool with patterning.

When using this yarn, it looks as though you’ve changed colors, but the colorful striped effect comes from one continuous strand of yarn.

Of course, different stitches and patterns are going to make the colorways work up differently.

Using this type of yarn has advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages include:

  • Excellent choice of yarn for beginners who want to knit up colorful projects.
  • No need to have multiple changes of colored yarn as the colors are in the one strand.
  • Each Yarn has been dyed with colors that go together and have an appealing stripy effect. Takes the guesswork of whether or not colors go together when buying yarn on the internet.

Disadvantages include:

  • Some work is required to find patterns and stitches to suit the self-striping yarn you’ve chosen.
  • When comparing prices, the self-striped yarn is more expensive than buying different solid color yarns.
  • Lack of control of where the color changes fall. Sometimes the stripy look is neat or uneven. Just be prepared to be surprised!

Ideal For: Self-striping yarns knit up colorful fun socks, scarves, cowls, afghans, beanie hats, and sweaters.

Fun Fact: Self-striping yarn is like magic. You never know how your project ends up!

Popular Options: Economical and High Quality.

Specialty Yarns

Specialty Yarn with multiple colors and textures. Speciality Yarn adds interest to knitted items.

These create special looks in knitted items. Novelty Yarn comes in a variety of colors and textures and adds interest to a knitted garment. Made of synthetic yarn blends, novelty yarns provide texture and interest.

  • Tweed: Has a main color, flecked with bits of fiber in different colors.
  • Heather: Blended from a number of different-colored or dyed fleeces, and then spun.
  • Marled fabric ragg: Marled yarns are formed by twisting together plies of different colors. The result is a single strand with multiple colors winding around one another. Marled yarns are any number of plies—two, three, four, etc.

Ideal for: Adding texture and interest to your knitted projects.

Fun Fact: One specialty yarn, Eyelash, is a polyester yarn resembling eyelashes!

Recommended: Budget and Luxury.

Wool Blend Yarns

Wool Blends in shades of blue, green and cream. Wool blends make great knitted sweaters.

Wool Blend Yarns as the name suggests, are blended yarns of wool and other yarns. Blends include cotton and silk or synthetic. For example, cotton acrylic yarn blend and Wool cotton blend yarn.

Wool manufacturers blend to combine the best features of each type of yarn included in the blend.

Ideal for: cozy knitted items

Fun fact: 50% Wool and 50% Cotton Blend is a great wool blend because each has qualities complimenting the other.

Recommended: Affordable and Top Quality

Yarn Weights and Yarn Types Go Hand in Hand

Yarns are made from many different fibers and come in different thicknesses, otherwise known as Yarn Weights.

Jumbo Yarn, a new member of the Yarn family, is thick and used in Arm knitting.

The other end of the scale is Lace yarn, one of the thinnest yarns. Often used for delicate shawls with lace pattern.

Checking the right Yarn weight for a knitted project is important. The thickness of the yarn determines the dimensions and look of the final result.

Here is a chart explaining Yarn Weights and Category Names.

Yarn Weights Explained

Meet The Yarn Weight Categories For The USA And The equivalents For The UK and AUS/NZ:


Number #0 on the chart, Lace weight is the lightest, thinnest type of Yarn. Used in lace knitting patterns, such as shawls and scarves.
UK- 1 Ply
AUS/NZ- 2 Ply
Also known as Thread, Cobweb, Light Fingering Yarn

Super Fine

Number #1 on the chart, Superfine yarn, includes sock and fingering yarn. Also used for shawls, this weight is thicker than lace. If you want your stitches to be fine, this is the weight to go for.

This yarn weight is often used to make socks, hats, and mittens. People with determination and time could make a sweater knit from super fine yarn; the results are gorgeous.

UK – 3 Ply and 4 Ply
AUS/NZ – 3 Ply and 4 Ply


Number #2 of the chart, Fine yarn (sometimes confused with lightweight yarn, which is thicker,) includes sport and baby weight yarn.

A great all-rounder yarn for projects such as hats, socks, scarves, cardigans, and sweaters.

UK – 5 Ply
AUS/NZ – 5 Ply


Number #3 on the chart, DK weight, and light worsted yarns are within this category. This type of yarn is great for sock knitting.

The UK – DK
AUS/NZ – 8 Ply


Number #4 on the chart, this type of yarn includes worsted and aran. It is popular with beginner knitters and is suitable for many knitted projects.

UK – Worsted/Aran
AUS/NZ – 10 Ply


Number #5 on the chart, chunky yarns and rug yarns fall into this category. Excellent for knitting up a project quickly. As the name suggests, the result is bulky and chunky but makes for a cozy scarf or cowl.

UK – Bulky
AUS/NZ – 12 Ply

Super Bulky

Number #6 on the chart, Super bulky yarns make knitting up a hat super fast! They’re warm and have a bulky look.

UK – Super Chunky
AUS/NZ – 16 Ply +


Number #7 on the chart, the Jumbo category, is a relative newcomer to the Craft Yarn Council Chart. Jumbo and Roving yarns fall in this category. A popular choice for arm knitting scarves, blankets, and home decor.

The UK – Jumbo
AUS/NZ – Jumbo

What Does Ply Mean?

When you see the terms 2 ply, 4 ply, 8 ply, etc., it means 2 or more single strands have been twisted together.

To ply yarn, individual singles are spun together with the twist worked in the opposite direction from how they spun the singles.

The number relating to ply doesn’t determine how thick the yarn is. You can have a bulky two-ply yarn or a thin four-ply yarn, depending on the thickness of the single strands.

Choosing the Right Yarn for a Pattern

Patterns almost always include the brand, weight, and color of yarn, as well as the size of knitting needle used.

If you want to use a different brand of yarn, it is important to choose the same type of fiber and weight of yarn used in the pattern.

If you choose to use a different type of fiber, consider the result may look and feel different than the pattern.

Always make a swatch with the yarn and needle you plan to use for the pattern before starting to make sure you are knitting the correct gauge.

Some people knit tighter than others, so the gauge varies from person to person.

Adjust your needle size according to your gauge.

Patterns also tell you the yardage or grams of yarn used for a project. Always buy more yarn than a pattern suggests in case of mistakes, knots, or gauge issues.

Understanding the Label

Each ball of yarn has a ball band (the label), which states everything you need to know. Including the fiber content, weight, amount, care instructions, suggested needle size, gauge, and dye-lot number.

Fiber content: This is the material used and is often in percentages. (For example, 90% merino wool, 5% silk, and 5% cashmere.)

Yarn Weight: This is the total thickness of yarn, often measured in wraps per inch (WPI). The ply count also factors and ranges from the finest to the heaviest weights (usually between 1-ply and 14-ply).

In the United States, the categories range by the symbols numbered from 1-7 in the Standard Yarn Weight System.

Amount and weight of the ball: This is the total length of yarn, measured in yards and ounces or meters and grams.

Care instructions: This provides the necessary information on how to wash (by hand or machine and the temperature settings to use) and dry your knitted garment (whether it is to be air dried or tumble dried).

Also, if the fabric is suitable to dry clean or iron.

Suggested needle size and gauge: Yarn gauge is specified by the number of stitches and rows within a 4×4 inch or 10cmx10cm swatch. (Remember, it’s always important to check your yarn gauge.)

This determines whether you have to go up a needle size or down a needle size.

Dye-lot number: This refers to the color of yarn. When buying more than one ball, be sure the numbers match. Even when balls of yarn appear to be the same shade, the color differences show up in the final knitted fabric.

Things to Consider When Shopping for Yarn


  • What season is it?
  • What will this knit be used for?
  • What functions will it have?

Fibers and Texture

  • How often will I use this item?
  • Is the knitted project for a baby? Therefore the fiber needs to be soft.
  • What sort of care will it need? Will I want to wash this item frequently?


  • What color best suits the person the knitted project is intended for?
  • What color matches your home decor if knitting rugs or throws?

Budget and Price

  • How much do you want to spend?
  • Weigh the options between luxury yarn versus cheap yarns.
  • What are you going to knit? A sweater with the most expensive yarn is pricey!


Knitters should enjoy the yarn they interact with. A project takes time, patience, and everything from the color, to the weight, texture are essential components to a successful and beautiful handmade project.

The whole point of choosing the right yarn is to make wonderful handcrafted items for yourself, family, friends, and other loved ones. Using yarns you like is vital and makes better crafts!

In conclusion, there are so many different types of yarns.

I hope this article has helped you find out what materials are available to knitters. Using this guide, you should be able to find the right one for your project. All the best in your knitting projects!

Next > Black Friday Yarn Sale

About Jodie Morgan

Hi. I’m Jodie, creator of Knit Like Granny. (Yes, I’m real :) ) Thanks for being here.

I started Knit Like Granny to show 1,000,000 people the joys of knitting & highlight alternatives to fast fashion.

I love knitting and have met so many fabulous knitters through this site. I enjoy learning and helping others discover the joys of working with yarn.

Please say hello!

49 thoughts on “Types of Yarn | A Guide To Yarn Types and Different Types of Yarn”

  1. Liked the progression and logic of your article. Would love to have it in print to share with the beginning knitters I teach. Anywhere I can download a copy without all the ads so I can save my printer ink and paper? The photographs were well done and colorful as well. Thanks.

  2. I have a question. I have a size 7 yarn and want to stripe it but don’t have any other 7’s. What combination of yarn sizes will give me the same weight?

    • Hi Terri

      Thanks for getting in touch and asking this question. I will check with our lovely readers and get back to you. Cheers Jodie 🙂

    • Hi Terri. One of our lovely readers suggested this –

      The ballband gauge of the yarn you’re doubling has to be smaller/more stitches to the inch than the final gauge you want. 5.7 x .7 = 3.99 sts/inch, or approximately the gauge you want. But to find that 5.7 number, you divide the known gauge (4 sts/inch) by .7.

      Another lovely reader suggested that you will need to swatch first to see if the combined yarns you are using actually stripe as you want.

  3. This is a great guide for beginners like me to select the yarn for our initial projects. Love that it is simple and easy to understand with no complex terms.

  4. The speciality yarn is what I am looking for but I don’t know how to describe it? The photo you show directly after the title “speciality yarn”. Is what I am looking for. How do do I look for this type of yarn?

  5. Hello!
    So very interesting…learned so much! My question is….what type of yarn should I use to make slippers. I’ve been using “Phentex slipper and craft yarn”. I’d like to try using something different but I’d need my slippers to be durable…washable…soft and not itchy of course! haha
    What do you suggest?
    Thanks so much…Fila

    • Hi Fila

      Thanks for getting in touch. Great to hear that you have found that yarn works well for slippers. I will reach out to my readers and see what suggestions they have for you regarding yarn for slippers. Cheers Jodie 🙂

  6. Hi Fila
    Here are the suggestions for suitable yarns for slippers.
    From Ikkle Knitter-

    If she is up to felting the slippers I often knit Fuzzy Feet for family members and they love them.

    And I find them to be quite durable and economical since the yardage on them is quite low.

    From bgow –

    acrylic does not wear well in slippers – it is very similar to wool in that regard and neither are nearly as strong as Phentex.
    If she is willing to take a chance and up her prices she could make felted wool slippers – they do take more yarn and so are not as cheap to make as unfelted slippers nor does she have the advantage of the stretchiness of the phentex ones where probably 3 different sizes fit almost everybody. Patons classic or roving felt very easily and the yarn can be found anywhere. I personally have not made felted slippers but several friends have and really like them. I do make felted mittens with superwash cuffs that I really like.
    I suggest she make maybe a half dozen pairs and see how it goes – making sure she prices it fairly – after all it is a donation for a very good cause that gives the donor a pair of slippers in return. If she does child size ones she should put some anti skid stuff on the bottom.
    If she does go the acrylic route maybe she could add some ultrasuede soles to extend the life. Or consider making a double sole knit tightly to make them wear better.
    I made a scrappy stranded sock slipper years ago with bits of acrylic and wool and the foot wore out fairly quickly.
    eta my hairdresser has a box of phentex slippers for her winter clients – we have to wear boots of some kind for a few months a year.

    From Allison1564-

    Many years ago we had cones of what we called carpet wool – it was for actually making carpets and was really durable, too scratchy to be on skin other than feet. I have no idea where to get it? I combined it with Phentex for slippers and they were pretty long lasting.
    My current recipe is two strands of acrylic and one strand of Phentex.
    ps – you can sometimes find cheap acrylic at thrift stores too.
    pss – found a stash for sale of – Superior Custom Carpets Cones 2 Strand Wool (This is would be found on Ravelry, search for the type of yarn Allison has given here)

    From bjobes –

    Acrylic can be fine but agree not the MOST durable. Get one that is strongly spun not ‘soft’ which is usually just loosely spun. Basic ‘pound o love’ or Red Heart super saver do fine and last reasonably well. Not forever but hey, what does?

    Adding a patch on the bottom reduces stretchiness but adds durability. spots of kitchen silicon add anti slip and may increase wear. Or you can look for Rug Yarn that is intended to be more durable and usually bulky. See what is available to you.

  7. Can socks, booties and hats made from DK yarn be used during summers or they are too warm for newborns? What is the best yarn to use to make stuff for summer newborns ?

    • Hi Fatema. Thanks so much for your questions. I’d suggest that DK Yarn might be a bit heavy for summer babies. A Fingering weight would be more comfortable in the warmer months. Knit Picks Comfy yarn in fingering weight is a blend of 75% Pima Cotton, 25% Acrylic. It is lovely and soft and good for baby items. Hope this helps. Cheers Jodie 🙂

    • Hi Dymphna. You can use any 100% Wool Yarn suitable for felting, but don’t buy Wool Yarn that is labeled ‘Superwash’ or ‘Machine Washable’ & no Acrylic! These yarn types will not felt and you won’t get the results you want. Worsted Weight 100% wool is a good option because it felts well without too much pilling. Cheers Jodie

  8. Hello. I’m a first-time knitter. I had carpal tunnel surgery last year. And, I’m a 62-yr old senior citizen.

    I want to knit blankets for 27 people age ranging from 7-month old to 62-yrs old senior citizen. Crazy huh??!!

    I won’t be doing them all at the same time of course, but, my goal is to have 1-3 blanket a month for December’s Christmas gifts if I can.

    1. What is the best and most soft yarn that I can use to create blankets for both the baby, toddlers, adults, male and female?

    2. Machine washable and does not bleed yet soft yarn.

    3. Comfortable for all season (warm in the fall & winter, cool in the spring) yet affordable.

    I need tips, suggestions and helps on the following mentioned including the brand please. I’m so sorry for such a long message and lots of questions.

    Your reply is truly appreciated. Thanks.

    • Hi Glenn. Wow! You certainly have set yourself an amazing goal! Good on you 🙂 I am sure your blankets will be well received. Knit Picks Brava Yarn is a great choice. It is 100% acrylic so affordable and there are lovely colors. It’s machine washable too. Knit Picks Brava YarnThere are a range of colors for Bernat Baby Blanket yarn that is a very soft 100% polyester chenille style yarn. I think this yarn would suit adults too. This is machine washable and can be put in the dryer too. I have other suggestions for soft yarns for blankets. It is focusing on yarn for baby blankets but it gives you idea of brands out there that are cuddly and soft in my post here All the best with your blankets 🙂 Cheers Jodie

  9. Hi! I just wanted to thank you so much! I’ve recently wanted to make crochet projects and wanted to know all of the different types of fiber there are so I can choose the best one. But, I was having such a hard time figuring it out until I came across your article! This is so well done, thank you! You made my work so much easier!

    I just have a few questions!
    You see, I’ve been wanting to make amigurumi projects, but I don’t know which type of fiber to choose. Do you know which fiber is best for amigurumi?

    Also, I’ve recently been wanting to make a realistic amigurumi fox, not precisely for kids, just like a plushie. (Btw, is it a big difference if it’s not a soft yarn? I don’t want it to feel tough.)
    I want the yarn to look like fur and have a color that looks like a real fox. Textured, not like the main color cartoon-like. Something like a specialty yarn or novelty yarn to make it look realistic. But, I’ve been having a hard time finding one. Any recommendations?

    Or maybe, should I just make the yarn fluffy with a brush? I made a dog a few years ago and made it fluffy with that technique, but it didn’t work that well, I had a hard time making it fluffy. I figured it was because of the fiber, I don’t know which type of fiber I used then. So, any recommendations of which type of fiber is the most easier to brush with?

    (Like your previous comments said) I need tips, suggestions and helps on the following mentioned including the brand, please 🙂
    Your reply is truly appreciated.
    Sorry for the long questions! And thank you so much for your time!

    • Hi Anahi. Thanks so much for getting in touch and how wonderful to be inspired to make Amigurumi projects. I have reached out to an expert in this area – Justine from The Woobles. Her amigurumi creations are gorgeous. Here is what she said “I’d recommend 100% acrylic (for cost-effectiveness) and 100% mercerized cotton (which is the prettiest), since these fibers hold their shape the best. I actually have a handy dandy article about supplies for amigurumi, including the types of yarn to use.
      Hope this is a good start and I will get back to you regarding yarn that looks fluffy. Cheers Jodie 🙂

  10. Hello, I am often noticing that some yarns I work with are “shinier” than others, meaning that it is not as great for my projects, but I don’t know how to identify the shiny ones on a website when buying yarn. e.g. I bought pink Cygnet DK yarn, which was shiny and not very good when crocheted or knitted and then king cole big value dk, which was not shiny and more pleasant to work with. How can I know which are shiny yarn balls and which are not?
    Much appreciated, Anna

    • Hi Anna. This is a great question, thanks for getting in touch. Acrylic yarns can tend to be shiny and like you’ve experienced it is hard to tell sometimes when buying yarn online. I’ve taken a look at both the yarns you’ve mentioned and it is not easy to tell whether they are shiny or not in reality. I will reach out to my readers and see what they suggest. I’ll be back in touch. Cheers Jodie 🙂

  11. Hi

    This was everything I needed to know! I was searching for undyed yarn, but there is so many possibilities, that I lost track. Hopefully this will go a bit faster now.

    Thank you.

    • Hi there. The yarn bracelets I’ve seen use a number of different types of yarn. I think it will come down to what you are willing to spend. Acrylic yarns are cheaper than 100% wool in worsted weight. I imagine this would be a great project for scrap yarns if you have any. Fluffy yarns like Mohair or Alpaca in my opinion wouldn’t work as well.

  12. Found the right article finally!
    Loved the way you explained so that a beginner like me could understand with ease.
    I also have a question. I’m trying to knit blanket as my first big project. does the cotton yarn work for a blanket ?

  13. This was so helpful when I was searching the name of a big chunky yarn and from this. I found that its name is merino wool

    This was so helpful.


  14. College granddaughter wants a cardigan. I’m looking for a fiber or fiber blend that will give good stitch definition and is relatively easy care. GD may have a bit of a sensitivity to some wools. I know wool will give excellent stitch definition but not sure about acrylics. She is eying a Celtic type stitch pattern…maybe a double cable diamond pattern or something along that line. Thank you for all thought/recommendations.

    • Hi Cathy. Thanks for getting in touch re fiber for someone sensitive to wool. How lovely to knit a cardigan for your grand daughter. I have heard from experts that using acrylic wool for projects such as those you mention, works fine. It is always a very good idea to knit a swatch using the stitch pattern you intend to use, then wash it and see how it turns out. Brava by Knit Picks has a lovely range of colors.

  15. Hi there, I am a beginner to intermediate knitter. My last time I knitted was around 15 years ago. I have a pattern to knit a beanie and a scarf. The wool suggested in the pattern – 753-203 Lion Brand Tweed Stripes Yarn: Tundra – however it is now discontinued. I love the feel of 100% Merino wool and would like to attempt knitting with it for this pattern. I understand through my research that I should be looking for the merino wool to be worsted. Can you please help me understand: why is worsted merino wool better? If it is not better, what type of merino wool should I purchase? What weight/ply would I need to consider? And, is there anything else I should be aware/prepared for when I make this yarn transition? Thank you.

    • That’s great that you are wanting to knit a beanie and a scarf.

      I took a look at the yarn you mentioned which is discontinued and it is 100% acrylic.

      There is a helpful website called Yarnsub that will give alternatives to yarns.

      When you search you will find it gives options for yarns that are acrylic or acrylic blends.

      I too love 100% Merino Wool. What many knitting experts recommend (I am always learning) is to create a swatch with the yarn you want to substitute and see what gauge you get and does it match the pattern’s gauge you want to use.

      The Lion Brand yarn that you mentioned is a Bulky Weight #5 so you would need to be looking for a merino wool in a similar weight. It could also be a merino wool blend.

      Here is a link to my post on Worsted Weight Yarns that will hopefully help answer the questions you have.

      All the best with your knitting project.

      I’d love to hear how you got on.



  16. Thanks for the valuable information, I am at a point in time where I can create some projects now and your guide has inspired me to pursue them!

  17. I am having trouble identifying a type of yarn and was hoping you could help. I would need to send you a pic somehow.

    • Hi Deidre. Thanks for getting in touch. I’ve sent you an email so you can reply with an attached pic of the yarn in question. Cheers Jodie

  18. Hi Jodie
    It was wonderful and worthy for a textile professional like me to to go through your article. Greetings and thanks. Al

  19. Great information, thanks!
    I was just curious on the statement that heathers and tweeds were synthetic. I believe they encompass both natural and synthetic yarns, and perhaps originated from natural fibers?

    • Hi Breanna. Thank you for your kind words. You are right, heathers and tweeds are definitely found in both natural and synthetic yarns. I will update my post to reflect this. Thank you for pointing this out. Cheers Jodie


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