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Classifying Fibers

The spinning is based on mechanical procedures and unlimited length with unlimited raw materials.

These materials or elements can be divided into 3 classes:

  1. Short filaments (short fiber) such as cotton, wool etc.
  2. Intermediate length filaments such as hemp, jute and wool.
  3. Filaments of determined length such as silk.

In the process we will first work with machines called flap, card, which is reduced to cleaning the fiber. The following machines of the process to regularize the base of the fiber for further processing..

When talking about yarn or yarns, or even of simple fibers twisted with each other, we talk about the base material (this is important no matter what the desired output is) and since ancient times, it has been marketed based on its quality, with a measure of length, thickness and weight.

Cotton yarns, wool, silk, etc., even if they are apparently cylindrical there is more variation, and still lack a lot of what we have come to expect in modern life, uniformity, since it does not have a regular diameter, therefore its thickness cannot be determined as a wire, etc.

Where it turns out that it can only be based on length and weight.

The classification of the fibers are in two groups:

  1. Constant Weight System
  2. Constant Length System

When it is necessary to refer to the thickness of a yarn or thread it is clear that it is difficult measuring it due to the small size and by the irregularity due to the twisting and tension of the yarn especially in the natural fibers.

An indirect system of expressing thickness was then used and the concept of numbering and title arose.

In spinning systems there are several forms of holder or numbering of yarns whether the source material is cotton, wool or synthetic.

There are several methods for numbering threads. The coexistence of all of them is due to the inertia of the custom, since with some only of them would be sufficient.

Numbers that describe the characteristics of a thread are called the title, and must be preceded by the technique that was used.

Numbering systems are classified into two groups well differentiated by their opposing approaches: Direct Systems and Reverse Systems.

The Many Uses of Thread

Special crochet threads are usually treated threads. They are very soft threads, 100% cotton. And, if you want to make quality items, of excellent quality.

The most important feature of these threads, which differentiates them from thread for other use, is that they are mercerized.

It is a special procedure for treating cotton. It was invented by JhJohnon Mercer in 1844. Mercer was an English scientist who specialized in textile issues. Later, in 1890 the system was perfected by H. A. Lowe. This process involves treating cotton fibers with sodium hydroxide. The mercerization swells, and brings shine and softness to the cotton strands.

The process of John Mercer, from where this word comes, mercerization, achieved a swollen fiber, with a lot of resistance and that managed to make the fiber better at absorbing the different inks and dyes. The problem was that during the application of this treatment, the total volume of material was greatly reduced.

H. A. Lowe's contribution to this system was to retain the tight cotton fiber during the process to prevent it from shrinking. He got what he wanted and also got a glossy finish for crochet threads.

This mercerizing process alters cotton fiber, and causes the walls of plant cells to inflate and transform into reflective surfaces. This causes the silk-like shine and softness of the crochet threads that we enjoy so much.

The current mercerizing system continues to use this process developed more than a hundred and fifty years ago. Some crochet threads have double mercerization, which gives them twice the strength and shine. They are more expensive, but useful when you need threads that have even more quality.

In crochet, in addition to using cotton as a raw material, other materials can be used. We can use wools of different types, such as mohair or cashmere. You can also use materials such as bramante, silk, raffia, macramé (a decorative textile made by knotting and weaving), metal threads: silver and gold, acrylics, fabric strips, leather laces and the list goes on.

There are countless different options in today's crochet threads. They are almost limitless and each one can help you continue to reach new levels of creativity.

An important rule when choosing a ball is to rub it against your skin to feel it in contact with the body. If the touch is soft and warm, it will be a good choice and you won't be disappointed when you make a wearable. This test should be done whenever we buy balls, but especially when we want to knit baby clothes (as even more care is needed), seek out threads you find skin is delicate, soft and smooth to your skin.

Tip: It is preferable to use threads that can be machine washed.

Crochet yarns are sold in 150 gram skeins and in 25, 50 and 100 gram balls. The balls are ready for use when they are bought, but the skeins, must be altered before using them, you will have to make them balls.

The ideal thickness of yarn will depend on the kind of work you plan to do. There are factors that can influence this thickness, such as spinning type, moisture, or storage.

Shadow-caressed

This was written when I was sixteen, my parents had taken us on vacation to Lake Michigan for a week over summer break. It was a beautiful time and I spend a number of evening sitting outside on the bungalow's veranda just listing and watching the world unfold around me. During that time I wrote a number of poems this being one of them. Enjoy.


Cautious at first over the burning ground
Slowly smothered under the desire of greed
Foot falls gentle, that left no sound:
Stomped out by the shadow as if a weed.

Faint with light, by shadow dappled, alas, graced with cloud
The boats glide, graceful and fair
More bright than boat grave with silver:
More fine than wave divine with gold.

How grave is the faint with glass grass:
My ship, dew-smoothed, my fine one?
How dreary is the by shadow dappled grass!
By darkness graced, by silver crowned, but, graceful with cloud.

Shadow-caressed, cloud-graced, and, dappled with sun?
By sun smoothed with forgiveness, embraces the forest:
The sparrows glide, lazy and quick,
The ships flee, lazy and divine.

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.

The Many Fibers of Spinin

The most enjoyable aspect of spinning is that you get to work with many different types of fiber. Each one brings with it its own properties that make it challenging to work with. Each one has its own unique character when it is completed.

Natural fibers, without exception, require several successive processes to obtain clean and uniform fiber, suitable for yarn. This short fiber, (a few centimeters), has a rough or twisted surface that facilitates its cohesion with similar fibers.

Natural fibers can be:

Of animal origin.

  • Wool
  • Silk
  • Mohair
  • Cashmere
  • Angora

Plant-based.

  • Cotton
  • Linen
  • Jute
  • Hemp

And artificial fibers.

Chemical fibers are obtained by extrusion: regenerated cellulose in the case of artificial fibers or synthetic polymers in the case of synthetic fibers. These fibers are long, i.e. they are already spun to be able to manufacture fabrics with them, but they can also be cut to spin them as if it were natural fiber.

The wool of the sheep is easily synthesized, as it is curled by nature, but can also spin the hair of other animals, such as yak, goat, angora rabbit, and alpaca, among others.

Good Morning


Good morning, Lord.
A new day you give me.
Thank you with all the strength
that I'm capable.
Thank you for this new dawn.
Thank you for this new start.
Thank you for your presence
that will accompany me all day.
I want to start this new day
enthusiastically,
with re-released joy,
with new enthusiasm.
It gives me security to know
that You are by my side:
in my family, in my friends,
in the people I'm going to meet,
in my own person.
I'm offering you my work this day.
May my effort be fruitful,
serve for the happiness of others
and help me find my own peace.
That, with my work, my day will be a little bit
of the world I seek and dream.
Help me fill it with dedication and love.
Lord, may he live in such a way today
that those who come to me
discover your presence and your tenderness.
Good morning, Lord.
A new day you give me.

The Art of Recycling Clothes

Recycling wool or yarn clothing can be a solution for knitting in crises. Face it we have all been there, but many of us have never taken the plunge.

When I was younger, there were times when there was not enough money left to buy yarn. Depending on the project we have in mind it can be a significant outlay to buy the balls of yarn we need to weave our garments.

I learned then that it is important not to let the crisis stop me! So I came up with a simple solution that allowed me to create the item I had in mind without breaking the bank as it were. How? We can recycle clothes. We can recycle the yarn.

The first place to search is in the closets and storage spaces, those rooms that we have dedicated to storing the output of our projects.

When we look through the clothes we have in storage it becomes apparent why we will not be wearing a certain item again. Though if we look closely we can see the reason why we originally purchased them. In clothes that are no longer worn we can find a wealth of resources for future projects. Things that have fallen out of favor can get a second chance on life.

Before we begin we should be clear that we are only interested in cotton yarn and wool garments, although you could also be served some synthetic fabrics, given they have similar properties.

If you can't find what you are looking for, check the rakes, the cheap ones, the second-hand clothes stores, etc..

The web is also helpful, since you can shop and find the opportunity to recycle clothes that are sometimes completely new.

The garments have to be checked in great detail, first, however. Go over them from top to bottom and front to back. Handmade wool and cotton garments are ideal, but they are very rare. Better to recycle plain colored clothes than multi-colored garments or those made from pieces of fabrics. We want long strands with very few knots where it was joined.

How it is done

With the garment clean, we'll have to start unstitching its parts. We'll look for the seams and undo everything we can.

We will separate all the pieces: the collars, the sleeves, each piece that was previously sewn with a needle.

We'll start undoing each piece from the top, from the last points that were made. Make sure to identify these carefully before you begin.

The most comfortable and sensible way to go about this is to make balls while undoing the parts. That way we won't end up with a mess of threads. In addition, with the tension of the ball, the yarn loses the curly shape it gets when it is knitted together.

The next step is to make it into skeins. There are winders marketed in different sizes, volumes and prices. Slower, more laborious and homemade, but just as effective, will be to use the backrest of a chair or the open and outstretched arms of some "volunteer". My husband was mine for several projects. He watched tv during the process.

We'll wash the skeins again to smooth the thread. If we don't like the color it has, we can dye it in this process. We can also smooth the thread of the skeins with steam.

When the skeins are dry, we'll have to make them into balls again. To do this, we will reuse the different systems that we have seen above: skeins, chair or volunteer.

And now I do think we have everything we need for our next project.

Know Your Yarn

Fiber yarn consists of transforming the (x) fiber into (y) yarn, this operation takes place when the different properties are utilized to obtain a desired result. This is done through addition of threads, when twisting several short fibers at once to bind them together and produce a continuous strand; when they are spun (twist) long filaments you get stronger threads, also called yarns.

The way the fibers are spun to produce yarn has a direct influence on the properties and appearance of the final product. The direction of spinning when producing yarn also influences the texture of the fabric.

Yarn with S torque or Z torque.

Natural fibers—except silk—are short; are processed to produce yarns with which fabrics will be manufactured. Nonwovens are produced directly from fiber. 'Chemical fibres', both artificial and synthetic, go through the yarn process during manufacture; this results in long, continuous filaments, which must be cut if they are to be mixed with natural fibers.

The yarn is done in several stages. The process of yarn manufacturing can be of two types: artisanal and industrial.

Have You Found the Words

How has the Bible found words that allow it to evoke divine, invisible, and ineffable realities?

The revelation of the being and action of the Holy Spirit is but an example among others of the way in which the biblical authors have expressed God's presence in his creation from one, very simple words Like every language , it is from the daily experience and after the historical experience as these words were loaded with a very different experience in which the gift of the creator to his creature was manifested.

When the Bible is finished with the testimony of the writings, a theological language is already constituted which the Church will always refer to to express the action of God from which she lives.

This is the result of a long history, rich with meaning for our lives.

I Am Not In the Business of Spinning

For some reason when I was start talking about spinning they seem to think that this is my profession. I am admittedly very passionate about it. It would also me miss leading to suggest that I haven’t played around with the idea of starting my own spinning business. But thinking about starting a business and actually do it are two entirely different things. While it would absolutely invigorating to be able to wake up in the morning and know that the day would be dedicated to my hobby it is on the other hand daunting. As anyone who knows what the market is like knows that it is a demanding task. On top of that it is an industry with rather narrow margins. Even with the added value of home/hand spun yarn it takes a lot of it to actually make up for the time invested in creating a skein. Of course you are not forced into a specified length. As most manufacturer choose a length of yarn for their skein, this length can vary, however, the market has dictated some standards through the years. The artisan spinner does not need to produce the longest skein. From a business perspective this is a pleasant prospect, yet there is also a hurdle in which one needs to jump… Does your product entice buyers? The reason we have industrial spun thread and yarns is because they are easier to produce, faster, and in most cases of higher quality. Or is it? Many of you feel that the artisan spun character far out weighs the pros of an industrial produced thread. For those of us with that opinion it is easy to become blinded by what we perceive as value and what our customers will perceive as value (compared to what our higher price point will also convey). Novelty and value. Is this enough to build a business? Can we place these two values down as a cornerstone, hang them on our shingle and offer customers something better than the yarns ans threads produced in a factory? To answer this question, to understand what it means, you need to have years of experience spinning. For a novice the answer might be a resounding yes. But through time, with the acquisition of more experience the answer is likely to change. This is why you see so many people offering hand spun assortments at markets and shows, on facebook and co. but rarely the same faces consistently. It is a business and it is hard work to produce a product like this in mass by hand. And if you care to start a successful business you will need to have a lot of merchandise to sell. Even if you only have a few customers. And in the beginning most businesses can only expect to have a handful you will need enough stock to entice them and service their needs. I find it fascinating that there are so many ways to acquire customers for these fledgling endeavors. You can find business and loyalty cards in variations of shapes and sizes with the fitting motif. Artisan markets allow you to hand them out and find potential customers in your locations. If you are dreaming bigger you can offer it on the aforementioned sites or on etsy and other portals. To allow like minded individuals a chance to find and purchase your yarn and yet you need time is against you. As you browse the site you can certain see that a lot of work goes into a simple skein of yarn. Time varies, those of you who have a lot of experience know which corners can be cut, and which can be combined, but once you have that hank in your hands you know the job is yet to be finished. Regardless of the amount of work you know you have invested into your product, it is unlikely that a customer will. Will they put place the same value on the finished ball of yarn as you do? Will the price seem justified of astronomical when they compare what you are selling to that of what they see in the commercial balls that they normally purchase? Answer these questions honestly. You cannot expect to build a successful existence on mis conceptions. When I answered all of those questions to my satisfaction I realized that it was the joy of the work which drove me to want to share. The yarn was just a byproduct of that enjoyment. One in which I felt I could share with others. Thus it was natural to think about it in the context of a small business (a time or two) but once I realized that this was the hard way it slowly slipped into the back of my mind. And the idea for site emerged. A more reasonable and manageable way to share my love for spinin. But, as with all things it is something that people ask me fairly frequently and so I thought that it was only fair to lay out the points that have caused me to stop and contemplate the possibility, to weigh it out an wonder. The final analysis is up to you now. And you have to know for yourself if it seems right or if your love stems from something else. Please, let me know what you decide.