DK Weight Yarn Guide

Properties of cotton Yarn | Yarn Fi...
Properties of cotton Yarn | Yarn Fibre Series

If you’re wondering, “what’s DK weight yarn?” then you’ve come to the right place!

Yarns come in many shapes and sizes. They can be as thin as a cobweb (like a lace-weight) and as thick as a soda can (like jumbo yarn for arm knitting and crocheting).

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What Is DK Weight Yarn?

DK weight yarn is a light weight yarn that sits next to worsted weight yarn in the yarn weight family. It’s thicker than sock and sport weight and thinner than worsted weight yarn.

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Just as other weights of yarn, DK yarn comes in many different colours, textures, and fibre contents. It usually comes packaged as a skein or hank, but is sometimes sold as a yarn “cake.”

What does DK mean?

DK stands for “Double Knitting”, this does not mean the yarn is meant for knitting projects

Other names for DK weight yarn

Not all DK weight yarns are referred to by the name “DK weight yarn”. Depending on the location, they carry different names:

  • Light yarn
  • Category 3 yarn
  • DK yarn

How To Identify Worsted Weight Yarn

Size

Naturally, dk weight yarn is thicker than a Category 2/fine yarn but thinner than a Category 4/ worsted weight yarn.

Projects made from a dk yarn or a light weight yarn will have more drape to them than would a project made using a worsted weight yarn.

Crochet Hook Size

This means it comes with a special required crochet hook or knitting needles.

The recommended knitting needle size for dk weight yarn is a (3.5-4.5 mm), and the recommended crochet hook size is 4mm knitting needles.

This does not have to be followed religiously, you can always go up or down a crochet hook/ knitting needle depending on the crochet project or gauge.

If you are looking to create an airy, open fabric then size up a crochet hook or knitting needle, or size down to create a tighter, sturdier fabric. As always, check your pattern to see which size needle or hook the designer recommends.

Pattern Gauge

When crocheting with DK weight yarn, expect a gauge of 22-30 stitches per 4-inches of single crochet with a 4mm crochet hook.

This is just an average, your gauge may differ depending on the needle/hook size you’re using and your personal tension.

And, when knitting with dk yarn, expect a gauge of 20-29 stitches per 4-inches of stockinette stitch.

Number of Ply

Ply refers to the number of strands of yarn that are twisted together to create the finished yarn. Ply however, is not always an accurate indicator of a yarn’s thickness.

Fewer ply yarns can be thicker than more ply yarns.

With that in mind, DK weight yarn is traditionally made up of 8 plies, or strands of yarn twisted together. But, not all DK yarn is 8-ply. You’ll see some that are made up of fewer plies. 

Length/Yardage

The number of meters/yards per 100 grams varies depending on the exact yarn. However, you will generally find DK yarn to have between 190-300 meters/yards per 100 grams.

Best projects for worsted weight yarn

After giving you all this knowledge and advice about DK weight yarn, i think it’s time we look at the best projects to make with light weight yarn.

Category 3 weight yarn is a great choice for a wide variety of projects. It’s strong and durable, making it ideal for items that will get a lot of wear, like sweaters, scarves, afghans, and hats.

It does not have to end there as it works equally well for accessories like scarves and hats as it does for garments like sweaters and cardigans. And because it comes in so many different colors, textures, and fiber contents, you’re sure to find the perfect yarn for any project.

How to DIY DK Weight Yarn

Can i really make my own dk weight yarn? Yes! I make it myself all the time.

How?

2 strands of fine yarn= DK weight yarn/ category 4 yarn.

As simple as that.

If you ever find yourself without dk weight yarn but looking at a project that asks for the yarn, you can always make it yourself if you have fine weight yarn at hand.

Advantages Of DK Weight Yarn

Fast

There are other faster categories of yarn that you can pick, but if you are looking for a crochet garment that will give you a lovely drape, then the category 3 yarn might be your best choice.

It works slightly faster then all the other lower categories. This yarn is just fine to work crochet cardigans and sweaters.

Working a big project with category 3 weight yarn is not as tedious as using sport or category 2 yarn.

Easy To See

If you have a poor eye sight, then you want to work with a thicker yarn. So working with category 1 yarn is not the best choice.

Crocheting at night with a dimer light can be challenging, if the yarn is thicker, light the category 3 weight yarn is, then seeing is so much easier.

Versatile

Category 3 yarn allows you to make almost anything and everything from clothes, blankets, decor, amigurumis, etc.

This is not the same for fingering weight yarn. Crocheting a blanket with sport yarn is a lot of work, it can be done but it will take a while.

I would not always advice to use a dk weight yarn for blankets, as people prefer to use a worsted/ category 4 yarn for this. However, it is perfect for clothes.

Fabrics

The yarn comes in many fabrics for multiple purposes

Great for beginners

If you are a beginner, then the perfect yarn to use in the earning journey is category 3 yarn. The yarn is easy to hold, calls for a good size yarn (4.0mm) which makes the learning curve so much easier.

How To Check For DK Weight Yarn

Yarn Label

Not all yarn is labelled or called the type of yarn it is. So it is good to understand yarn labels.

The paper around the yarn usually has prints on the back. If the yarn is not labelled to be a category 3 weight or worsted weight yarn or any yarn size, then it will have a number together with the recommended crochet hook or knitting needle sizes.

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The numbers on the yarn stand for their categories, So the number 3 is the category 3 yarn or the DK weight yarn we have been talking about.

Wraps Per Inch (WPI) Method

This method is for in case your yarn did not come with the label. or maybe it did but you lost it along the way and you are unsure of your yarn size.

Take your strand of yarn and wrap it around your pencil or ruler. Wrap the strands next to each other, until you’ve made enough wraps to cover 1-inch of the ruler.

Count the number of strands it takes to cover 1-inch. A DK weight yarn will have between 10-16 WPI.

As simple as that.

Guage Method

Check the gauge the yarn gives you to be able to categorise your yarn.

When crocheting with DK weight yarn, expect a gauge of 22-30 stitches per 4-inches of single crochet with a 4mm crochet hook. It will not give you the exact numbers i have mentioned here, but it they come close, trust that yarn to be category 3 weight yarn.

Recommended DK Weight Yarn

1. Bernat Softee Baby Yarn

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If you are thinking about crocheting baby blankets, then Softee Baby yarn is an easy-care soft premium acrylic. When you pick up this yarn and feel the softness, you will want it for all of your knit & crochet baby projects.

2. Premier Anti Pilling Everyday DK yarn

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Premier Anti-Pilling Everyday DK Yarn is a 100% acrylic fiber that is specially formulated to reduce the formation of pills over time.  As it is made with fibers that resist pilling, it will last longer, look newer, and feel softer. These exclusive pill-resistant acrylic Premier yarns are ideal for apparel and home décors projects like afghans, baby clothing, sweaters, and baby blankets.

3. Mary Maxim Prism Yarn

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Looking for a cool, colorful yarn to incorporate into your creative crocheting and knitting projects? Whether you’re making sweaters, scarves and shawls to keep warm during the winter, fashion garments to sport for show, afghans and blankets to put on display and use in your home, or little accessories like socks and mittens, you want to know you’re using acrylic yarn that not only feels soft and comfortable to the touch, but that also expresses your style.

Get the yarn HERE

4. MARY MAXIM MELLOWSPUN DK YARN

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Made of soft 100% premium acrylic with a special twist that we are very proud of! Choose from 33 luscious shades that blend and complement each other.

5. Patons Astra Yarn

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This patron DK/Sportweight yarn ideal for lighter weight fashions, afghans and more.

Common DK Yarn Questions

Is Dk Weight Yarn The Same As Medium Yarn?

No it is not.

According to Craft Yarn Council’s Standard Yarn Weight System, DK weight yarn falls into the category 3-Light yarn weight, along with light worsted yarns. It is thinner than category 4-Medium yarns (a.k.a. worsted weight yarn) and heavier than 2-Fine yarns (a.k.a. sport weight yarn).

Do 2 strandsof DK make Chunky?

Two strands of DK yarn make worsted weight yarn.

2 strands double knit = 1 strand aran.

2 strands worsted weight = 1 strand chunky. 

2 strands chunky = 1 strand super chunky

Is DK Yarn good for beginners?

Yes it is. Considering that the yarn calls for a 4.0-4.5mm crochet hook or 4.0mm knitting needles, it makes it easier for the beginner to spot the stitches as they are crocheting or knitting.

I do hope this post has helped you to understand DK weight yarn a little better. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask in the comments below. And be sure to check out our other posts about different types of yarn! , if you didn’t know already, we covered worsted weight yarn guide too.

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