Comparing Thread Weights

Although most of us love our local craft shops, the unfortunate reality is it is often easier to buy online. Finding brick and mortar suppliers for weaving cottons seems to be particularly challenging which is a nuisance when you’re not too familiar with the naming conventions for thread weights and have no way of seeing them or comparing them.

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To try and help with this, I’ve put together an assortment of threads, from the Güterman sewing machine thread to flat silks, along with the wraps per centimetre to give you some idea of how all the different threads compare.

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For those of you who can’t live without working in wraps per inch (wpi), just take the wraps per centimetre values, and multiply by 2.54.

I’ve done my best to try and be accurate working out the wpc but if the value is crucial for your work, I’d recommend checking it again yourself. Wools and lofty fabrics are sometimes a bit tricky to measure as it’s easy to pull too tight when you’re wrapping.

If you’re trying to make thread substitutions, the wraps per centimetre is worth calculating. I’ve been looking for a substitute for Kyo thread, which is a gorgeous cupra thread that I normally use for making temaris, but is difficult to get outside of Japan. When I saw Sue Spargo’s amazing selection of Razzle threads, I thought they looked to be about the same weight. However, when you work out the wpc, it’s quite clear that the Kyo thread is slightly finer.

I’ll add more threads to this as my stash grows and if anyone has any specific requests, but I hope you find it helpful and happy weaving!

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