Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Plying with Silk Thread
I have a cone of very fine two-ply silk thread and want to ply it with singles to make laceweight three-ply. The first thing I had to do was discover the direction of the thread's ply. It was plied S, counterclockwise. I used a 10x magnifying glass to get a good look at it - it was too fine to see otherwise.
Once I knew that the thread had been plied S, I wanted to see what would happen if I plied it with a single that had been spun Z (clockwise), plying them both together S (counterclockwise). Are you with me?
The rust-colored sample is the result. The fiber is an alpaca/Rambo blend. After finishing it bloomed all right, and is a very kinky, still-energized 3-ply.
The pale brown sample is CVM, spun S (counterclockwise) and plied with the silk thread Z (clockwise). The result is much smoother, even after finishing. There is no residual twist energy.
So - silk two-ply (plied S) plied S again with Z-spun single equals lumpy, bumpy, fluffy, twisty yarn.
Silk two-ply (plied S) plied again Z, with S-spun single, equals smoother, even three-ply with no residual twist energy.
If you understood this the first time through, give yourself an A+!!