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Spinning Stinging Nettles

Function with Beauty
by John Dunsmore
http://resurgence.gn.apc.org/articles/dunsmore.htm
The fibre from the Nettle plant has been used as clothing in many cultures. In Nepal, the Himalayan giant nettle was processed and used for both fine clothing and for sailcloth. The fibre from the inner part of the plant was removed. The bark is stripped and can be used for basketry. To soften the fibre, the inner bark was simmered overnight in a solution of water and wood ash. The fibre is then beaten and rubbed with oil to make it easier to separate and tease for spinning. The fibre is dried in the sun and handspun with a hand spindle.
http://resurgence.gn.apc.org/articles/dunsmore.htm

Nettle Cultivation
An exploratory study was done by FAIR-CT98 to reintroduce the cultivation of stinging nettle Urtica Dioica. The nettles are planted on trial fields of 10 hectares and the fibres will be spun into yarn and woven into fabrics to determine different applications.

Grado Zero Espace is researching the use of nettle as an environmentally friendly alternative textile. Nettle yarn was used in WW1 and WW2 as a substitute for cotton yarns. Stinging nettle has a hollow core making it a natural insulation. For warmer winter garments the yarn is spun with less twist so the hollow fibre can remain open. For summer wear the fibres are more tightly twisted, reducing the insulation . Nettles were also used as a natural dye. The leaves produce a green and the roots were boiled with salt or alum to yield a yellow dye.

Barhka Textiles
Village women knit wild nettle yarn into scarves.

The Wild Swan
“Look at the nettle that I hold in my hand! Around the cave where you are sleeping grow many of them; only those nettles, or the ones found in churchyards may you use. You must pick them, even though they blister and burn your hands; then you must stamp on them with your bare feet until they become like flax. And from that you must twine thread with which to knit eleven shirts with long sleeves. If you cast one of these shirts over each of the eleven swans, the spell will be broken…”
Hans Christian Anderson

Spinning Nettles – You Tube

Processing Nettles
Join the nettle discussion in our Forum.

From Sting to Spin

Gillian Edom writes about the historic use of nettles.

Nepal Nettle Project

Stinging nettle
American Stinging Nettle
Brousseau Collection
© Br. Alfred Brousseau, Saint Mary’s College

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Nettle Yarn

 

Soya Cotton Yarn Sublime 2 Balls Green 81 Nettle DK 240yd Soft

Soya Cotton Yarn Sublime 2 Balls Green 81 Nettle DK 240yd Soft
Current price:
$18.99
Ends in:
3d 22h 35m
Soya Cotton Yarn Sublime 2 Balls Green 81 Nettle DK 240yd Soft
Seller: eBay

*NATURAL DYEING* Jackie Crook. wool,silk,tops,yarn,plant,vegetable,indigo dyes

*NATURAL DYEING* Jackie Crook. wool,silk,tops,yarn,plant,vegetable,indigo dyes
Current price:
$0.77
Type:
Auction
No. of bids so far:
3
Ends in:
6d 15h 20m
*NATURAL DYEING* Jackie Crook. wool,silk,tops,yarn,plant,vegetable,indigo dyes
Seller: eBay

Natural Ramie Vegan Top Spinning Fibre 100 grams cellulose roving sliver

Natural Ramie Vegan Top Spinning Fibre 100 grams cellulose roving sliver
Current price:
$12.25
Ends in:
7d 0h 16m
Natural Ramie Vegan Top Spinning Fibre 100 grams cellulose roving sliver
Seller: eBay

4 Skeins Classic Elite Verde Collection Woodland Wool/Nettles Yarn #3168 NEW

4 Skeins Classic Elite Verde Collection Woodland Wool/Nettles Yarn #3168 NEW
Current price:
$16.99
Ends in:
12d 7h 57m
4 Skeins Classic Elite Verde Collection Woodland Wool/Nettles Yarn #3168 NEW
Seller: eBay
 

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This page last edited on November 10, 2015

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