Softly spun yarn shedding and breaking

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  4. Softly spun yarn shedding and breaking

The Peruvian grey “tweed” yarn sheds like crazy & breaks when used as a warp of 3 yards. I’m going to finish this & felt it to see if that will hide the broken warps & stop the shedding but wonder what I could have done differently.

When you are working with softly spun yarn like the Peruvian Tweed it is important that you don’t have it sett too tightly in your reed.  Your reed needs to allow space around the yarn so it doesn’t abraid the yarn.  For example, we use a lot of brushed mohair (which sheds a lot).  It needs to be sett at 6 epi but we would never use a 12 dent reed 1 every other dent because the reed is too close and will abraid the mohair.  We use a 6 dent reed so the yarn is not squished in the reed.

I used to weave warp predominant chenille scarves at 15 epi.  I could have used a 10 dent reed and sleyed it 1/2 per dent to get 15, but I wouldn’t because the reed striped the chenille.  I used a 5 dent reed with 3 per dent because it was kinder to the chenille and I had no problems.  These are things you learn along the way and unfortunately, there is no quick way to learn it all.  I am constantly learning.

Fulling is often needed to stabilize a yarn that sheds, which is why so many light and lofty fabrics have been fulled.  You have to sett more open so that the yarn has room to bloom in the wash and to stabilize.  When you sett more open and you weave the same number of picks per inch you end up with a lovely fabric that has optimum drape, stability and is still soft a lovely.

One other thing to note is that the weave structure you choose will affect how much shedding you get from the yarn.  A twill structure has a longer float and you will have more shedding than plain weave.  Plain weave locks the yarn between every single warp and weft intersection.  When I wove mohair blankets we never wove them in anything but plain weave so we could control the shedding factor.

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