WHAT DO ALL THOSE SYMBOLS MEAN ANYWAY - HOW TO READ A YARN LABEL?
There's a reason that there is a little pretty label that goes around your yarn and it's not just to make the yarn look cool. If you've started to get interested in knitting then those labels will becomes more interesting and more relevant as you continue your knitting adventure. Let's have a look at what all the bits mean, from the bottom up...
SPUN IN YORKSHIRE FOR THE KNIT KIT COMPANY
So this bit is simple. This shows you where your yarn was produced and for whom. In this case, it was spun (at Laxton's mill) in Yorkshire just for us (The Knit Kit Company). This is important to know. It shows you the provenance of the yarn and you can infer the type of quality you're going to be getting from your yarn.
If you're interested, Yorkshire is famous for its mills and its spinning history - surrounded by sheep and fields it's always been a place renowned for its relationship with the world of sheep and yarn. They know what they're doing.
When it comes to the second part of the sentence - well, that's an easy one. It was made just FOR us. You won't find a yarn like it anywhere else. Cool.
When a yarn is dyed it is dyed in 'a lot' which doesn't mean there's loads of it (although there usually is!) it means a batch. This number is important. Because the yarn is dyed in batches it is impossible to guarantee that the exact dye colour will be identical for each batch. They'll be close (usually so close you'd never know) but they might be slightly different. For a one ball knit this doesn't matter a jot but when you start moving up to multi-ball kits (like ponchos or shawls etc..) you will want to make sure that your dye lots for your yarn are the same so you don't have any issues with colour consistency.
SHADE: TOODLEPIP TEAL
This is the fancy name for the colour of your yarn and we think it's quite catchy! Toodlepip folks!
MADE IN GREAT BRITAIN
Does what is says on the tin. This tells you where your yarn was made and in our case that is in Great Britain. We're proud that our yarn has been produced in the UK. We're proud that we have supported other British businesses in our quest for an awesome yarn for our customers and we think it tells you all what fab quality craftsmanship you're going to be getting and how gorgeous and well made your yarn will be.
This is your ingredient list. In our case it's 100% wool. Not just any wool though, merino wool. Soft, strong, breathable, soft (did I say that already??). No yuccy extras, no plastic fibres to pollute our planet just good old fashioned 100% ethical, sustainable wool.
This is the weight of the ball of the yarn. It is correct to within the boundaries set by the UK weights and measures laws which allows for up to a 4.5% variation on a 50g ball. We think it makes sense to weigh your ball of yarn before starting your project just so you know if it's a little light - in which case you might want to make an adjustment or two to your pattern to compensate for this (i.e. remove a row or two).
DK / SPORT
This is the 'weight' of your yarn. Not the actual weight but the size of it! Sounds complicated but really it's not. Yarn comes in many different thicknesses - some yarn is thin, some is chunky and some is inbetween.
We produce two weights of yarn, our Super Chunky SKI MERINO and our DK (Double Knit) / SPORT weight SCUBA MERINO. Double Knit / Sport weight yarn is a thin-ish yarn which is often used for baby-wear or lightweight knits (think spring, summer, autumn knits rather than heavy and chunky jumpers). Chunky is perfect for those cosier items when the weather is a bit colder!
This tells you what kind of wool you have in your hands. In this case it's fine merino wool which means that the diameter of the merino wool fibre is between 19.5 - 20.5 microns (which is really small which means it's soft against the skin!!). We already know our ball of yarn is 100% wool from the ingredients list but here we learn what type of wool it is. Given that there are 100s of types of wool (think of all the different sheep you see when you take a ride through the countryside) it's important (and useful) to know what type of wool you have. We chose fine merino as it's super soft and gorgeous.
This is the brand name of the yarn. Read why we chose the name SCUBA MERINO here. Brand names should be cool and make you feel good about what you're buying! We think ours are pretty groovy.
WOOLMARK SYMBOL (FOLLOWED BY SOME NUMBERS)
A globally recognised textile symbol showing you this product is made of 100% pure wool. It provides assurance of the highest quality product and our spinner, Laxtons, has a special number that they put after the symbol which is their licence number to use the special symbol on their products.
These crossed needles have little numbers next to them, in this case 4.0mm and 6US. This means that this is the recommended needle size to use with the specific yarn.
As you would expect the US and the UK have different ways of sizing knitting needles so that's why we put both on - to keep it simple for everyone!
Sometimes when you are knitting a pattern it is important to know what your 'tension' should be for that specific pattern. This little grid helps people with that. It tells you that for a specific measurement (in this case 10cm x 10cm) that you should have a certain number of stitches going across and a certain number going up (rows). In this case, for this yarn the suggested tension is 20 stitches across by 28 rows in a 10x10cm square.
Many of our patterns are designed to not rely on people getting an exact match to this as we wanted to keep everything as simple as possible. However, if you are finding the sizing of your knitting to be way out (i.e. your hat turns out the size of a dolls hat for example) you can knit up a little swatch and check it against these numbers.
Pretty much what it says! The approximate length of your yarn ball! In this case 120 metres / 131 yards.
In this case this product (the yarn ball) is in accordance with BS 984: 1990 which is a part of the weights and measures act in the UK. This means that the weight of this ball of yarn complies with these standards (which, in case you're interested, are the "method for determination of net mass of retail packages of knitting and rug yarns").
FANCY CARE IMAGES
If you've ever done any laundry before in your life you'll know that clothes have these universal symbols on them to tell you how you should care for them. Yarn is the same, it needs love and care (and the odd wash!). These symbols, from left to right mean the following:
wash by hand - do not tumble dry - natural drying (lie flat to dry) - iron cool (max 110 C) - do not bleach
WELL, WE HOPE THAT WAS HELPFUL!
As ever if you ever need any help from us or just fancy having a little blether then just get in touch. We're always happy to help.
Feeling motivated to get your hands on some of that fine merino yarn now? Head on over to the shop and fill your boots!!!
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