What can you do when you have a mystery fiber or yarn? How might you attempt to discover its identity?
This was the topic of our November program. Karen Agee, with the help of Teresa Costa, demonstrated some tests which can be performed to solve that mystery.
Karen and Teresa demonstrate the burn test.
First examine how the fiber feels. Next take a sniff.Set your fiber on fire! The way it burns and what is left behind can help you determine its identity. (Plus it’s interesting and fun!)
Try a burn test as shown in this chart from Threads magazine.
Safety always comes first during a burn test. Thanks, Glenn!
Most animals fibers will burn in a similar way as wool, while plant fibers often burn like cotton. If your fiber is a blend, a burn test may tell you if it is mainly natural fibers or a synthetic.
Fibers react differently to acids and alkalines. When placed in bleach, an alkaline, acrylic and tencel lose their color, wool and alpaca are dissolved, and cotton survives. Acid dyes are used on wool and can be used on silk.
So check out your stash and solve a few mysteries, courtesy of Karen and Teresa.
Karen Agee and Dawn Ask-Martin recently met with long-time members Bob and Jan Williams at their home in Grinnell, Iowa, to accept their generous donation. Once again we are reminded of what wonderful members we are fortunate to call friends.
The second Saturday of September is the kick off to our new Guild year. It’s a time to see Guild friends and catch up with their fiber adventures in addition to having a business meeting.
During the program, an extended show and tell, it was evident the members had a productive summer. As always we were inspired by seeing and touching the rugs, shawls, scarves, sweaters, tartans and plaids shared and hearing the stories of their creations.
Be certain to check the blog for next month’s program Estonia, Latvia, & Lithuania Fiber Update presented by Sarah Humke. Sarah will entertain us with stories of her recent trip to that part of the world. She’s sure to have brought home many fiber souvenirs to show us as well.
Better yet, attend the meeting. It will be held on October 6, to avoid a conflict with the Iowa Federation meeting.
Spinning wheels whirred, knitting needles clicked, and conversation and laughter could be heard on Saturday, July 21, at the alpaca ranch of Gary and Karen DeVries. It has become a tradition for us to gather on the shady lawn next to Karen’s studio for our summer picnic and meeting.
The day was picture-perfect, although some camera shy attendees somehow avoided my view finder. (I’ll get you next time!)
We enjoyed an excellent potluck lunch at picnic tables under the trees, followed by the business meeting.
Thank you, Gary and Karen, for your generous hospitality again this year.
Guild members are always working to improve our space and make it a warm and inviting place to work, play, and learn.
The classroom is the focus of our current project. As an interior room with no windows, the goal is to open up the space by adding an additional doorway and improving the lighting, walls, and ceiling. The floor has already been leveled.
Our building committee and volunteers have been hard at work readying the room for the “pros” to come in and do their part.
Photo Credit: Becky Metcalf
The improvements are being funded in part by contributions earmarked for the building fund and proceeds from sale items. Watch for more updates as the work continues.