Experimenting with Silk.

I have just gone back over a few of my previous posts and have come to the conclusion that I am a hopeless case. Far from actually sorting, carding and spinning the fleeces in my stash over Christmas I have just managed to increase the stash and have had to put it all back where it was after the Christmas nature table was put away. In my defence I can only say that at least I have been buying a different type of fibre – I have been experimenting with silk.

The first silk I tried was Tussah silk, a dyed top from Long Draw James. It was quite a different spinning experience – very much more slippery than wool. I think I spun it too thickly really, I should have made it go a lot further.

The single.


The next silk I had a go with was silk hankies, beautifully dyed. I think that is one of the main attractions for silk – it takes dye wonderfully and because of its sheen you can get such jewel-like colours. So the hankies were very interesting, basically a pile of single cocoons stretched out to make a square. 

I loved the process of drafting – putting a hole in the middle and gently pulling it out until I had a very long, thin ribbon of silk fibres to spin. I spun much more thinly this time and because I was spinning from hankies there were areas of very short fibres which gave texture to the yarn. This is by far the finest yarn I have spun and it needed a high twist to hold together.

My next challenge is to price what I have got ready to sell, I seem to have a real block about this next step – debates are raging on various sites about pricing policy so I think I will just have to bite the bullet and get on with it.


  1. Minty, the colours are absolutely gorgeous, my favourite! I cannot wait to see this in real life. Also, don't worry about actually doing what you said you would do some time ago...it really doesn't matter.....I do it all the time, things work out in the end! x

  2. Thank you Shan for lovely, supportive words. You should come up and squish some yarn one day. Bring that wheel and let's see if we can get it going.


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