The Silk Lap

The Silk Lap Drafted Out

The Silk Lap Drafted Out

No, not like a lap formed when you sit. Mulberry Silk Laps are produced while carding silk fibers to produce silk top for spinning into yarn. They have a similar staple length to top but with much more texture. They are in layered ‘blankets’.

The one I have was purchased last year at the DFW Fiber Fest, when I was visiting family in Fort Worth, TX. It’s gorgeous, dyed a shimmery turquoise. It’s large, 18.2 ounces, and covers nearly half my king-size bed when laid out flat. Frankly, I’ve been too intimidated to touch it, not least because it was expensive. I even bought a “practice lap” last year at SAFF, a smaller less-expensive one. Unfortunately, it was not very good quality and ultimately not helpful.

Well, I’m over that now. On Monday I took my gorgeous lap out and got to work. I cut a strip off of one edge, then a square off the end of that strip. It has layers similar to silk hankies, and I took one of those layers and drafted it out, spun it, and knitted a swatch. I took another layer and knitted it directly into a swatch without spinning it first. I took a class on that at SAFF and it makes wonderful knitted fabric.

This is the first time I’ve worked with Mulberry, or Bombyx, silk. It’s much “silkier” than Tussah silk, which is what I’ve worked with before. It’s really quite lovely, and I’m already thinking about what I want to make with the yarn. I think I prefer the spun to the directly knitted, due to the texture.

The pictures below show the various steps. In the pictures of the lap itself, it looks lighter because of the shimmer of the silk in the light.

Save

This entry was posted in Art and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *