Here is a guide to the icons we’ve used in our shop to help you understand how our yarn is packaged. Also, we’ve included a guide to some of the terminology to help you understand the characteristics of our different types of yarn.


Skein: this icon indicates the yarn is packaged in a skein – a bundle of ready-to-knit or crochet yarn.


Ball: the yarn is packaged in a ball – similar to a skein, but a round shape. A ball of yarn is also ready to knit or crochet – no winding required.


Twisted Hank: this yarn is packaged in a loosely twisted loop. Before you start knitting or crocheting, grab a friend or a swift and ball winder, and wind the yarn into a ball.


Reeled Skein: this yarn is put up in a loosely bundled loop. Before it’s ready to work with, wind the yarn into a ball with a swift and ball winder. Or, ask a friend to hold the loop of yarn while you wind it into a ball.


Cone: the yarn is wound onto a cone – perfect for weaving or any large project.


Weight: Yarn weight refers to the thickness of the yarn. We have listed both worded descriptions of the weight (such as worsted, sport, bulky, etc.) and the Standard Yarn Weight numbers from the Craft Yarn Council.

Ply / Plies: Ply is the number of strands twisted together to form a finished yarn. The number of plies does not determine the weight of the yarn, but it does affect the strength and texture. Brown Sheep yarns are spun with a variety of plies, from single ply (such as Lanaloft and Burly Spun), to 24-ply (Cotton Fleece).

Gauge: In knitting or crochet, the gauge is the number of stitches and rows per inch that can be expected for a given yarn with a certain size knitting needle or crochet hook.

Heathered Yarn: A special color effect in which part of the wool fiber is dyed before the yarn is spun, causing flecks of color to appear in the finished yarn.

Monochromatic: A special color effect in which the yarn is variegated with different shades (light or dark variations) of a single hue or color.

Hand painted yarn: A dye technique for creating multi-colored yarns with a variety of different colors.

Kettle dyed yarn: A dye technique for creating variegated yarn with subtle color change between shades or hues.

Felting: the process of creating a dense fabric by combining wool fabric with heat and agitation.

Superwash or washable wool: yarn that has been treated so that it can be machine washed without shrinking or felting.