Two-ply: not just for toliet paper

Mom asked me the other day if I ever thought about making a three-ply yarn, instead of my usual two-ply. I said, “Of course. Then I thought about the extra 33.3333333% more fiber we’d have to skirt, pick, wash, card and spin.” I said it nicer than that, obviously, or she’d have knocked some respect into me.

Well. I am a doofus. We often buy colored roving (because I still haven’t figured out how to dye our white roving…oooo….there’s a story there, later). That roving has already been skirted, picked, washed and carded. So all I really have to do is spin it. Sometimes we even buy alpaca yarn. Mom knits faster than we can do all the other steps, so she often goes to friends for yarn from their alpacas. I could actually make three-ply and above yarns just by spinning my usual two-ply and then plying it with existing yarn.


This kind of yarn is called “cabled” yarn. It’s durable, which is good since alpaca fiber isn’t, and has a round, clean shape. The lady who made that yarn spun one bobbin full of two-ply white yarn and another of two-ply grey yarn, then she plied them together. Last night I finished making a two-ply grey yarn that I’m planning on cabling with a black yarn. I’ll update you as I experiment with my first cabled yarn; I think we might have to discuss “twist” in more detail as well. I’ve mentioned it in passing, but it’s rather fundamental and probably deserves its own post.

Plus I’m out of time before work! Sometimes, when I parallel park, I’m all like “Bam! Bam! Bam! That’s right, Bertha the land whale is docked. Did you like that, homeless guy?” but usually I’m more like “Two inches forward, two inches back, three inches forward…is that my boss watching me park? How long have I been trying to do this?” Today was one of those mornings, so I’m running 20 minutes of parallel parking late.

About cliffhousealpacas

Once upon a time, my dad drove by some funny looking animals standing on little dirt hills in a field. Thus, the dream of an alpaca ranch was born. Now, we are embarking on a grand adventure of raising alpacas and becoming fiber artists.
This entry was posted in business, fiber art and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Two-ply: not just for toliet paper

  1. Pingback: Cabled yarn: complete! | Cliff House Alpacas

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s