Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Understanding Some Basic Yarn Properties.

By Becky Lindstone

Yarn can be described as a combination of fibers which are used to produce different textiles or in sewing, rope making, knitting and embroidery. Yarns will have different properties depending on how they were produced. Yarn can be manufactured using synthetic fibers like polyester or natural fibers like wool. Wool is an animal fiber that has been used extensively in the manufacturing of yarns. Other than the fibers used, the manufacturing process will also determine the kind of properties yarns have. Below are some of the characteristics of different yarns that will help you to understand them better.

First and foremost, there are two main fibers that can be used to manufacture yarns. These are filament fibers and staple fibers. Great examples of filament fibers are rayon and polyester. These two are extremely long and can be used to make yarns on their own. Yarns can also be manufactured using staple fibers. These ones are rather short and they must be twisted together in order to form the final product. This process of twisting and pulling the fibers together is very popular and the resulting product is known as spun yarn.

The perfect example of a staple fiber that is used to make yarns is wool. It is a unique fiber that is found in sheep. This fiber is elastic and durable and it is known to bend over 30,000 times without breaking. The unique thing about this animal fiber is the fact that it can absorb moisture vapor but repel liquid. There are many reasons why this fiber has been used in making garments.

First of all, it is warm and cool. The absorbent fiber can be used for making a number of warm clothes. Additionally, wool is naturally flame resistant. It is the only fiber that doesn't burst into flames when exposed to fire. If the fiber is exposed to a flame source, it will smolder or char. This is not the case with most artificial fibers in the market. Acrylics are known to melt or stick to the skin when exposed to flames. This fiber has been appreciated worldwide because it is resistant to breaking, piling or snagging. Woolen clothes are usually considered a great investment because they do not wrinkle or sag unlike other fabrics. The fiber is naturally elastic so it will last longer than other fabrics you know of.

Regardless of the fiber that has been used to create the yarn, twisting must be done to hold these fibers together. Twisting gives the yarns adequate strength. Twisting is done in different directions, that is clockwise and anti clockwise. The yarns can also be textured to increase strength and give them better insulation. Texturizing of yarns also helps in increasing the softness of the fabric. When choosing the ideal yarn, it is important to understand the kind of fibers it has as well as the method used to manufacture it. Look for respectable brand names like Sirdar if you want premium yarns that will last long.

Becky Lindstone is the author of this article on wool. Find more information about yarn here.

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