After a week of spinning silk tops to make a fine, smooth yarn, yesterday morning was a great contrast. We worked with various forms of silk "waste". On this bobbin I've mixed silk noils with some wool: Noils are the irregular fragments of silk product which are discarded when the smooth silk is reeled off the coccoons. So there's no way to make a smooth yarn out of them. There are short ends, snags and lumps of silk in random clumps in my bag of noils. But the important thing is that even though it might be "waste", it's silk waste. And silk waste is not to be wasted.
I love lumpy bumpy yarns. Spinning the noils on their own is challenging, because the fibres are all different lengths and predominantly short. Short lengths are hard to control in the spinning process. Mixing with wool helps to hold the yarn together. We had the option of using coloured wool, but I chose white. That's because I'm looking forward to dyeing what I've spun up. The silk and wool will take up the dye differently. I'm hoping that the noils will dye as brilliantly as silk normally does. If that works, I'll have random flecks of brighter coloured silk in amongst my dyed wool. But first, I have to spin another bobbin of this stuff and ply the yarn. Then I can get on with some of the other forms of silk waste we had to play with yesterday.