Category: Spinning

Reverse Systems

They express how much a certain thread weight measures when compared to other threads across the scale. They are called inverse just because the larger the number, the thinner the thread which seems illogical at first but is in fact simpler once you understand more of the finer points of spinning.

Also known as reverse or direct systems, it applies to fibers of limited length such as cotton, wool, etc.

The number is both higher and smaller is the diameter, in this weight system is fixed and the length is variable.

The formula is:

  • N'K L/ P
    • No. Number
    • Constant Ko
    • L. Length
    • P. Weight

Now we will look at how this is applied to actual measurements. Numberings or thread title for this system is as follows for both the English numbering system and the metric:


First we will look at the metric system to see how it is defined, many students of spinning prefer this system over the English as it is easier to work the numbers mentally. But in the end it is due to personal preference.

  • The metric number expresses the thousands of meters per kilo of each cape, followed by the number of capes.
  • The metric system is the most common of all the systems described.
  • For example, a thread consisting of 2 ends of 60,000 m/kg each is expressed as Nm 60/2.
  • To know the footage that has a kilogram of thread, simply divide the footage of a cape by the number of ends that form it.
  • For example, a 60/2 would have 30 thousand m/kg and a 60/3 would have 20 thousand m/kg.

English Number

And now the English numbering system with the metric measurements included for comparison.

  • The definition is the number of 840-yard skeins (768.08 m) weighing 1 lb (English pound 451.59 g)
  • It is enough to know that you have to multiply by 1.7 to go from the English system to the metric.
  • This numbering has always been the usual for cotton.
  • For example the cotton yarn Ne 30/1, which is an Nm 50/1

Basic Spinning

Many people feel that while, interesting, spinning is a space intensive hobby. And while that is true to some extent, it is not a requirement. While you will have better quality thread at a much faster rate it is possible to spin simply with your fingers, but to do so more accurately and quickly you use a spindle.

The hand spindle is a stick with a small disc at its end. These discs can be made of wood, stone, clay, or metal and have a hole in the center for the spindle. The tool is called a drop spindle because it is lowered or "dropped" during spinning. The thread is tied to the spindle and twisted as the wheel rotates. The spinner adds more fibers to the yarn, taking them from a flake that holds with the hand or has been rolled onto a stick called the wheel.

However, the spinster often stops and winds the thread produced in the spindle. The spinners have made yarns like this all over the world until the mechanical spinning lathe was invented.

Let Your Fantasy Lead Your Wheel

Fantasy threads are made in twists, combining different types of these into various forms. Fantasy threads are used in sweaters and woven dresses, for upholstery fabrics and for the decoration of fabrics for men's and women's suits. These threads are often made with mixtures of natural fibers and made by man. In any case, they are designed for a specific end use, and can be varied by numerous possible combinations of fibers, twists, dubbings and colors.

Types of fantasy threads:


It is one of the most used fantasy threads. Bouclé (French hairlock) is a type of fabric whose surface resembles rip binding. Bouclé is made partly or entirely from hair yarn and effect twirl, often using knots, bumps and slings. It is characterized by tight waves that are projected from the body of the thread at moderately regulated intervals. Bouclé yarn is used for woven sweaters, knitted and flat knit dresses and upholstery fabrics. The fabric can be used for dresses and coats as well. The ratiné yarn is similar in construction to the bouclé, but the waves are continuously twisted and are not spaced.

Chenille Thread/Stumpwork

Chenille is a term derived from a French word meaning caterpillar. It refers to a luxurious yarn especially soft, with hair coming out everywhere. Combed wool is usually mixed with other fibers. This type of chenille yarn is used for clothing made of knitted fabric for external use. In thicker threads, chenille is used to obtain prominent superficial effects on suits and coats. .

Another type of chenille yarn is often called chenille skin, used for chenille rugs.

Metallic Thread

The metal thread is a sheet of metal, aluminum, gold or silver, coated on both sides with a flat or colored plastic film and then cut into narrow ribbons. Plastic-coated metal wires do not become obscured. Metal threads have been produced by joining aluminum sheets between two layers of clear or transparent plastic film. This is the thread called the metal leaf type. A second class called.

Metallic type uses a layer of polyester film (mylar) treated with vaporized metal that is subsequently joined between two layers of transparent film.

Spotted/Mottled Threads

It is made by twisting many times in a short space one end of thread around another, causing some or elongated places (specks) on the surface of the thread. Sometimes a binder is used to hold the speck in place. Specks are usually spaced at varying intervals. Spotted threads are sometimes also called button threads.

Paper Thread

It is made by cutting and twisting wet paper to form individual thread ends, which are then woven into knitting work or in foot and weft fabrics like other threads. Since these yarns have strength they are suitable for making burlap, fiber mats, car seat covers, hats and handbags.

Plastic Thread

It is the coated yarn made of natural or synthetic fibers and that has been submerged in plastic that adheres forming a protective layer. It has the peculiarity of being highly resistant to tensile, elongation and the chemical agents that act on it, advantage that differentiates it from metal threads, very sensitive to oxidation and attack of acidic products.


Splashed is the thread with an elongated button that has been twisted forcefully and attached to a base thread. A seed thread is a thread provided with very small buttons, often made from man-made threads and applied to a natural or dyed base thread.

The button is a soft, elongated knuckle. The thread that forms these buttons can be continuous or can be made by wick flakes inserted at intervals between tie-down threads.

The Spinning Wheel

The spinning wheel is an instrument for spinning a clump of fibers.

This tool consists of a spindle, usually of wood, finished by a head in which the branch of fiber is inscribed that is spinning, which incorporates a wheel, and a pedal or crank .

When we are first exposed to the device we might think that the actual wheel part of a spinning wheel is what does all of the work. In fact it does not take place of the spindle, what it does instead, is that it automates the twisting process, allowing the spinner to "twist" the thread without having to constantly do so manually which was a very lengthy process. The size of the wheel, however, allows you to more finely control the amount of twist the finished thread is given. The thread still ends up on a spindle, just as it did pre-wheel.

A Short History of Spinning

The spinning wheel is a very old tool and has often been important as a symbol. Among the best known is that of St. Elizabeth of Hungary who spun for the poor.

Wrongly associated, popular culture has linked the wheel to the tale of Sleeping Beauty. This error arose from the proliferation of illustrations showing the protagonist pricking herself with a hypothetical needle on a wheel. However, the wheel does not consist of any needle-like part. Originally, Sleeping Beauty was punctured with a spindle.

In India, the wheel is a symbol of the struggle against British imperialism. As part of his campaign of civil disobedience, Gandhi convinced his followers that the best way to attack the British Empire was not to buy Manchester's textile products and make the clothes themselves by hand. The campaign inspired many people and succeeded in peacefully hurting the interests of powerful colonialism, helping the peoples of India achieve independence. Thus, the wheel became one of the symbols of India's independence.

The wheel first appears in about 3000 BC.

The spindle spinning wheel arrived in Europe from the oriental region towards the end of the 12th century. It began to spread in Central Europe in the 13th century, as the source evidenced by prohibitions on the use of the spindle spinning wheel for the guilds associated with cloth making.

The following prohibitions are documented, for example: 1224 Venice, 1256 Bologna, 1268 Paris, 1280 Speyer, 1288 Abbeville, 1292 Siena, 1305 Douai. In the crafts regulations of the Weber von Speyer it is expressly permitted only for the production of yarn.

The reason for the restriction to yarn is controversial. The bans may have been enacted to protect the high quality of the wool yarn produced with a hand spindle. For example, the so-called Livre des metiers from Bruges (ca. 1349) states that wool spun with the spindle spinning wheel is generally too weak, uneven, insufficiently rolled and too knotty. The spindle spinning wheel remained banned for guild use in some regions until the 15th and 16th centuries.

The first pictorial proof of a (still hand-driven) spinning wheel dates back to 1480. The inventor of this completely new functionality of the spinning device is unknown. Leonardo da Vinci later designed a spinning mechanism with a longitudinal spinning wheel, which probably did not spread. A foot powered was developed in the middle of the 17th century.

The first mechanical spinning machines of the 18th century were used as templates for both of the above-powered spinning wheel systems. The slightly older Spinning Jenny is based on the two-stage settling technique of the simple spindle, while the spinning frame developed almost simultaneously used spinning wheels.

Even after the introduction of more modern spinning machines, the spinning wheel was still used in the domestic area and was not drive-out of style until the 19th century.

Even today, modern spinning wheels are being built and developed by numerous craft companies, mostly for the needs of leisure spinners. There are even electrically operated spinning "wheels" in which the pulling of the thread is still done by hand, while the flywheel is replaced by the electric drive. This spinning equipment are mainly used in small businesses.