Caring for your Yarn

When you buy from me you will receive product in a sealed plastic bag inside the main packaging. This is so that I can secure product from any atmospheric damage while on route; whether it is UK weather (heat, rain or snow), or if you buy from overseas, the in-flight condensation in the airplane’s hull.

When you receive your product, there are some tips for storage and aftercare that may help you make the most of your crafts.

  • Store away from direct sunlight, as colours will bleach.
  • Store away from Moths and in a cool temperature.
  • If you need to wash your yarn then wash gently by hand in cool water, but do not agitate the fibres to avoid felting.
  • Avoid washing yarns with acidic based soaps and detergents, these will strip colours to varying degrees and are particularly noticeable on stronger, darker colours. Always use the mildest of detergents and soaps.
  • Dry flat and ideally on a drying rack, to allow air to circulate and dry the fibres evenly.
  • Keeping your yarn in skeins, rather than balls. This will avoid tangling and breaking the most delicate spun yarn gauges while you start to knit/crochet or weave. Over longer periods of time skeining is the best option, as ball winding your yarn may create stretching.

Cared for wool yarn is a joy to work with and can be kept for a number of years in yarn form if stored correctly.

Garments and other ‘washable’ accessories

Again most of the above principles apply here too, washing on cool washes (ideally hand wash) to avoid further felting or shrinking, wash with mild detergents and no conditioners, dry flat so as to avoid stretching and store away from sunlight, moths and in cooler temperatures. However, my main tips here are;

  • Hand wash, hand wash, hand wash! It is honestly the best way to look after your garments.
  • If you do choose the washing machine for superwash wool (100% wool will felt) then please follow washing instructions for your machine to the letter, your machine’s manufacturer may have specific directions for delicate wool items. In some cases wool and silk garments can be dry cleaned, so it is always worth checking with your local store.
  • It is also true that wool garments should not be tumbled dry.
  • Don’t store your garments in direct contact with moth balls, or perfumed sachets, as these may destroy the wool fibre over time. However, they can of course be close by.
  • I recommend most wool knitted garments be stored folded flat in a drawer. Hangers can stretch necklines and shoulders.

These steps should give your favourite wool garment a much longer life.

Hand Dyed Fibre and Yarn Special Note

Rinse fibres in cool/cold water where necessary and wash yarns separately and in cool, mild (acid-free) detergent. High saturate and brighter colours may bleed initially... this is unavoidable in hand dyeing. If you are wet felt making then protect tables, hands & clothing as a failsafe against any dye release.

Why do hand dyed bleed occasionally? Wool fibre has the capacity to uptake dye very well, but it does have its limit and as all wool breeds ‘dye-ability’ varies it is often hard to accurately gauge dye stuff to fibre/yarn ratios exactly. There are also some dye colours that will always bleed a little… like that red t-shirt you threw in with your whites! So it is important for the first few rinses to allow for this and keep these dyed products separate from undyed or mildly dyed products. This does not constitute bad dyeing, or fixing… instead it is a generic hand dye issue all indie dyers face and is also something commercial dye houses experience too.