I’ve started spinning some tussah silk top, trying to figure out how I want to work with it. I have tussah and bombyx top for the fine and extra fine yarns. I know it will be hard to get the finer bombyx to spin anything other than extra fine, so I’m trying fine with the tussah. It’s not that easy, either.

For a while now, my random spindle project has been some handpainted tussah. I like spinning that, so I thought about why and tried some of the undyed tussah on a spindle. The painted one drafts differently and is easier to control, it’s like the fibers are more likely to stick together rather than fly all over the place. So I tried an experiment and wet some regular tussah. After it dried, it was easier to work with because the outside layer formed something like a crust and held together more.

So I pulled off about 40g of it and wet it in the sink. The squeezed out fiber looks seriously nasty, like a pile of wet crumpled newspaper. But fleece doesn’t look all that nice when it’s wet either. I didn’t want to actually dye it, so I just dunked it in warm water. We’ll see what happens when it’s dry.

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