Monday, March 14, 2011

Hemp Fiber Is Really Green! Dudleyspinner Tie Dye Roving

I recently got in stock a big shipment of hemp fiber, 21 kilos which for those of us that are metricly challenged is about 47 pounds of fiber. I have been playing around with some commercial hemp singles for the past few months, plying it and knitting with it to see what kind of fabric I can produce.
In the first photo is the last of the experiments. The photo is of a a three ply yarn that I finally got RIGHT! It has a beautiful drapy feel to the fabric and is getting softer with each washing. This is a place mat that I have been using for a few months. It is a soft ecru color, not a bright white.

The second photo is a close up of that first test.
The bottom photo is the whole piece. I made a two ply yarn and it skewed very badly, I did a two ply with a cotton yarn and did a seed stitch at the bottom. It was nearly straight.

I like the absorbency of the hemp with the cotton. Hemp is quite strong so for that fiber to be absorbent it needs to be used, a lot, washed numerous times and dried in a dryer to soften it up. Hemp will last for years because of this fact we don't see much hemp fiber in our clothing. Manufacturers need us to buy new stuff every few years, so making clothing out of hemp is not in their best interest. It is in my best interest. I would love to have a t-shirt that never wore out! Or a pair of pants, or a jacket. So since the cost of buying hemp clothing is pretty dear, I will be making some of my own. I have lots of fiber to play with and a couple cones of yarn to play around plying.


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