How To Finish Handspun Yarn

Handspun requires a special finishing treatment. Handspun yarns should be washed or fulled before they are used for knitting, weaving or other projects to wash out grease or oils,and set the twist of the yarn.


Difficulty Level:


Time Required:

30 minutes

Here’s How:


  1. Wind your handspun yarn into skeins.
  2. Using a contrasting yarn, preferrably a cotton, tie each skein loosely in at least 3 places.
  3. Fill a wash basin with hot water.
  4. Add a mild soap to the hot water, such as dishwashing liquid.
  5. Place the skeins of yarn into the hot soapy water.
  6. Give the yarns a good beating in the hot water. I use a potato masher.
  7. Let the yarns soak for about 10 minutes.
  8. Drain out the hot water and remove the skeins from the wash basin.
  9. Fill the wash basin with cold water.
  10. Place the skeins into the cold water. Agitate again with the potato masher.
  11. Drain the cold water and remove the skeins.
  12. Ring out the excess water from the skeins and wrap them in a towel.
  13. Squeeze out the remaining water from the skeins.
  14. Hang the skeins up to dry.


  • So that the skeins don’t tangle together, make sure that the skeins are tied loosely but securely with the cotton yarn.
  • The hot/cold treatment described above, shocks the yarn and opens up the fibre.
  • This method is appropriate for wools, silks or cotton yarns. 
  • How To

    How Long does it take to knit
    How to Make an Alum Mordant
    How to Mordant Cotton and Linen Yarns
    How to Sew Handwoven Fabric
    How to Spin a Cabled Yarn
    How to Make a Tin Mordant
    How to Make a Twisted Fringe
    How to Use a Corker
    How to Wash Fleece
    How to Felt
    How to Use a McMorran Balance

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    This page last edited on July 24, 2013


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