For my next Spin Flora not Fauna project, I thought I would spin a bit of rose top. Rose fibre is another one of the ‘new’ vegan handspinning fibres, made from roses. The rose fibre has been extracted from the natural waste of rose bushes and stems. The fibre has been stripped and processed to create a luxurious and soft handspinning spinning fibre, similar to silk.
I bought a new spinning wheel recently-
A Kromski Polonaise from Wingham Woolwork.
This is a Ferrari of spinning wheels.
In order to give this new wheel a true test of what it can do, I then went to London’s local weaving centre – located in North London – Handweavers Studio and Gallery where they have a sumptious selection of handspinning fibres.There I discovered milk protein fibre top. I had heard of it but had never had the opportunity to test it out. What fun!Innovative fibres such as milk casein and soya fibre were developed during the early 40’s as a substitute for wool, which was needed by the men on the front line. These virtually faded from existence as other synthetic yarns such as nylon were developed. Some of these fibres are now making a comeback as there is more emphasis on environmentally safe products and eco-friendly textiles.Milk casein fibre is made by separating the oils and fats from the protein. The curd is rinsed, dried and dissolved to form a ‘dope’ that is pushed through spinnerets into an acid bath that forms the fibre. The fibre goes through further salt and formaldehyde processing to soften and improve the quality.Because milk casein is a protein fiber it can be dyed with CIBA acid dyes.I did find the milk fibre very soft and silky to spin.
Mudchute Farm - Did you know that you can find farm animals in the centre of London?
Did you know stinging nettles can be handspun into yarn.
Did you know you can spin dog hair?
Visit the on-line galleries and studios of textile artists in Canada.
Here is a listing of guilds and fibre enthusiasts in Canada.
Briggs and Little
Briggs and Little Woolen Mills has been spinning wool from Canadian sheep for the past 140 years.
Angora bunnies and lots of other goodies for the handspinner.
Where to shop for spinning fiber and yarns in Australia and New Zealand
Ramie, Jute & Other Unusual Spinning Fibres & Yarns -