Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Handspun Hemp

A couple weeks ago I ordered some hemp roving. I was mostly just curious. I've never spun hemp before and I wanted to try it out. I don't even know if there is a market for handspun hemp, but I guess I'm about to find out.

This is 2ply
Handspun Natural Hemp. I thought it would be fun to make a plied hemp especially for you knitters out there. Why knitters? Because the 2ply hemp will solve the common problem of knitter's slant that you get from a single ply. But really, this 75 yards of hemp is for anyone who loves the natural feel and texture. It's strength and earthy appeal make it wonderful for jewelry making. This hemp yarn is not too bulky. It's more comparable to a nice, even worsted weight. So if you've ever thought about working with hemp, here's your chance!

How was it to spin? Really good actually. It is very grassy or straw-like and at first I thought it might have a tendency to want to fall apart, but it didn't take long to get a feel for drafting it. I like the idea of making my own hemp yarn because I can control the weight and make it more even than you often find it in stores. I've used store bought hemp in some of my own jewelry making and had to cut off pieces where there were big, uneven nubs. I can see how those would occur because sometimes you do come across a thicker piece in the roving, but when you are spinning by hand, you can either pick out those pieces or adjust your twist to accommodate them.

I plan on making more handspun hemp. I want to make a couple hanks of single ply which is what you more often come across in the craft store. For my first skein I chose two ply really because I've never seen a commercial two ply hemp and I wanted to know what it would be like. I like the finished look of it and I think it would look very nice made up.

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