HomeProduct ChatTues, Nov 8 - Karabella Yarns Empire Silk
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11/7/2011 4:26:49 AM
duckbunni
duckbunni
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100% Italian silk
Made in Italy
Handwash/dry flat
Aran weight - 18st/4” on US6 (4mm)
50g - 83m (90yds)
Standard Price: $16.95US/$17.63CAD
Elann Price: $6.98US/$7.62CAD (58% savings)

The supreme luxury and luster of pure silk! 10 colors, plus 2 more in lesser quantities.

Unblocked, Blocked, Growth hang test, and Post-hang test

Silk - one slippery little bugger if not using the proper needles. Went with the bamboo straight from the get-go with this one to alleviate that tendency of this stuff to slip right off the needles. It’s a common comment in the projects as to how hard it was to work with because of the slipperiness. On the bamboo, I had no problem controlling this one. It’s a 3 ply, made up of 6 strands in each ply, making a firm yarn. I rather expected some problems with splitting and didn’t have any! The stitches are smooth and even, the fabric fluid, but not loose on the suggested needle. I’d maybe go down one size to help combat droop, if making a garment. A shawl or scarf, I wouldn’t bother changing needle size.

If you read the one comment left for this yarn, you’ll laugh a little, as it kind of reads like one of my reviews. Yet, I didn’t experience the problems she had. Then again, my sample skein was only 5 yds long, so I had very little to work with. As you can see in the photos, it’s a tiny little swatch.

I did a hang test, to see what growth problems this one might have. Silk is known to grow, much like cotton. I clipped it to the fridge with magnet clips and hung a bag clip on the bottom weighted with a small lock (McGuyver ain’t got nuttin’ on me). Unfortunately, I think the swatch was just too small to really show anything this way. The swatch grew a little in the block width-wise and shortened up row-wise, then was back to it’s unblocked measurements after the hang test. So suffice it to say, this one is gonna droop and get narrower and longer as the day goes on. Not a bad thing, so long as you plan for it in your project.

Ravelry has this listed as aran weight, but Yarndex has it listed as a worsted. At the gauge Elann has given and how it worked up, I’d definitely say it’s closer to a worsted. I didn’t hit gauge with the suggested needle. To get gauge, I’dve had to go up one or, even, two needle sizes. Then the fabric would have been so loosy-goosy that it for sure would be down at your ankles by the end of the day - even if what you’d made was a hat!

I couldn’t break this one and it held up to frogging. I frogged my whole first swatch, as I’d cast on too many stitches and ended up with a swatch only 7 rows high. Not many comments in the Ravelry project notes, but those that are there are contradictory: some people loved this stuff; some hated it.

Silk isn’t for everyone. It’s not an easy fibre, if it’s 100%, to work with. It grows and if you don’t do a large enough swatch, in pattern, and do a hang test, your gauge will most certainly lie to you. It’s delicate when wet. It will look beautiful in lace (there is one navy blue tank that is gorgeous in the projects), but may not hold it’s shape.

Notes:

- US6 (4mm) bamboo
- Preblock and post hang gauge: 22s/4”, 7rpi
- Postblock, but pre-hang test gauge: 21s/4”, 7.5rpi
- Frogged well
- Could not break
- 3ply, 6 strands in each ply
- Lustrous and slinky
- Won’t pill (pill test didn’t even bring up halo!)
- Hey, mom, look at me grow!
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HomeProduct ChatTues, Nov 8 - Karabella Yarns Empire Silk