Sunday, April 23, 2006

Going Gossamer...

I guess it's time to update my sampling and swatching for gossamer yarn. Recall on March 21 I posted pictures of wool samples and on Feb. 21 & 23 I posted some swatches done with commercial roving.

Here are some photo's of sampling with the raw wool.

This is wool from Suki:

This is the yarn from Suki's wool:

And this is the knitted swatch from that yarn:

Suki's wool is very fine, but it is also very "crisp". That crispness carries over into the yarn and wouldn't make for the kind of drapey handle I'd want from a knitted shawl. This yarn would be better woven into a light weight outer garment. It would make a great wool twill fabric.

Now this lock was from Rick:

And Rick's wool made yarn that looks like this:

Rick's wool is finer than Suki's wool, so I was able to spin a finer yarn. Note the difference in YPP (written on the sample card). However, Rick's wool has a more defined crimp and is loftier than the yarn from Suki. In this picture of the knitted sample, the bottom motif was knitted on US 0's size needles, the same as the swatch from Suki. That sample wasn't very open, so I went up to US 2 needles to achieve a more open lace effect that you see in the upper motif.

Both of the raw wool samples were washed by the lock, by hand then combed with Louet minicombs and pulled into top which was predrafted to the point where it barely held together as top. A worsted drafting technique was used with my hands held about a fiber length apart and the fibers in the drafting triangle held under tension. This was to create as smooth a yarn as possible. Fuzzy yarns won't show off lace patterning.

That's probably enough to digest for now. Click on the pictures to see them larger and note the the wpi and ypp on the sample cards. I'll post more on some other samples later this week.


  1. I'm enjoying your sampling notes. Both of the yarns are lovely. Is the sample you show from Rick's fleece on the size 0 or 2's?

  2. I find this all very facinating. That is an incredible YPP that you are able to spin.

  3. I've never seen notecards like the ones you're using (but I am new to all this). How long of samples do you sping, and what methods do you use to calculate the angle of twist?


tie in the loose ends...