Organzine is a twisted and plied filament silk. This is about a 40denier strand, that has been plied up four strands to the single, and then doubled with another four-strand single. That makes it a 40d4x2 organzine.

This shows the color right; it’s a brilliant, sheeny white.

This skein is just over half an ounce. I haven’t measured the yardage, but it’s quite a lot.

I love the way light catches this stuff. In these pictures, I had to disable the flash to keep it from wiping out all the detail.

That’s a ball-headed sewing pin, for scale.

40 replies
  1. admin
    admin says:

    Not sure yet – I’ve got another friend who needs a laureling ribbon, but I may end up with some of the skeins going to Contemporary Handweavers of TX for judging.

  2. admin
    admin says:

    It entails a one-ounce skein (this is half as big as what I need) and I’d want to have more even twist (because this has some variances). I’m sending in the entry form for an entry, and I’ll just work out what to actually take a little later. Gotta reserve a place, at this point.

  3. geodyne
    geodyne says:

    It looks lovely but as you say, there is a little variance in the twist. I assume this is from your own cats again. What did you use to spin it?

    Thanks for sharing – I’ll be moving onto purchased silk in the next month or so, and this is really inspiring me to play with cats come next spring (it turned out that there simply wasn’t the time this summer).

  4. misoranomegami
    misoranomegami says:

    May I ask if you use historic techniques or more modern kind? I’m thinking about doing a research paper for weaving on asian weaving and spinning techniques. Plus I consider you a font of all knowledge. ^.^

  5. shadowduchess
    shadowduchess says:

    Nah, don’t know nothing about those real women..nope not me..*snort*
    I don’t understand this preoccupation that women have that drives them to have a figure that could spin on a toothpick.
    It’s sad really, and distressing but at least for me I can make clothing for the larger ladies and they appreciate it being one myself.

  6. shadowduchess
    shadowduchess says:

    *sews hand to forehead*
    I know it weighs heavy on my heart and I don’t know how I manage some days…however, I always seem to pull through comforted in my blissful layers of fabric and restful in the knowledge that somewhere out there some lovely lady has a momento of a bygone era that I bound together for her mildly tethered form.

  7. admin
    admin says:

    hmm… most of my technique is historic, because nobody in the “modern” world reels silk by hand. But, some of the stuff I use is modern.

    I have a modern accelerated silk reel, based on an Edo period Japanese zakuri. The zakuri is semi-modern, in the sense that it was developed around the turn of the nineteenth century, but it’s not *current* modern. The photos on show the use of an old-style clock reel, which is definitely the older way. I use some modern equivalents, like a crockpot full of hot water instead of a charcoal-fired stove, and a toothbrush instead of a bundle of twigs.

    I’m doing the throwing using a castle-style spinning wheel with a flyer and bobbin. The original Chinese technique for throwing silk uses the ancestor of the Great Wheel. Thirteenth and fourteenth century Europeans used water-driven mills with multi-spinner frames to throw their silk… so in a way, I’m way behind technology on that. Pretty much nobody throws silk by hand nowadays.

    If you have specific time-period questions, I’d be happy to help; I’ve got lots of resources. I’m not aiming this at a particular period recreation, although I could with some minor alterations.

    Have you ever seen Vermis Sericus? (note: the author mis-spells the title, in case you go looking for other copies)

  8. admin
    admin says:

    The variances are mainly just from me trying different methods to measure how much twist goes into how much yarn. I used a castle-style spinning wheel.

  9. admin
    admin says:

    :chuckle: I don’t think it’s a matter of it getting over-filled; you just have to let them know that you’re going to enter by a certain date, then the actual entries are due by a different date. I think it may help them plan their exhibit space, figure out how many hanging pieces, how many flat cases, etc.

    I haven’t entered this show before; I’ll let you know how the judging goes. I’m not expecting a rocker lifestyle, unless you’re talking about the kind of rocker that comes with a footstool.

  10. greyfortholly
    greyfortholly says:

    Are you okay with me printing off the third picture down? It is beautifully set as a photagraphic composition, I would like to have it over my sewing/beadwork area.

    Thankyou for sharing the work that obviously gives you so much joy!
    It’s oh so gorgeous!

  11. admin
    admin says:

    Sure! I can send you a larger version, if you’d like – these are sized down so that they won’t take forever to load.

    The only thing that irks me about #3 as a photo, is that it almost looks like there’s a nailhead in the lower-middle left – it’s actually a shape formed by several threads intersecting, it just looks incongruous.

  12. admin
    admin says:

    I just mentally parsed your comment about “from your own cats” – I was thinking ‘that damned feline that keeps getting on my threads.’

    This is actually reeled from cocoons that I bought. They’re from China by way of Treenway Silks. I’ve traded silk cocoons for several things, and I’m running low on my hand-reared stash; I’ve got enough for one significant project, but I want to get my experimentation out of the way before undertaking that.

  13. shadowduchess
    shadowduchess says:

    Ahh, okay.
    Thank you for walking me through this btw..*G*

    Yes, please I’d like to know how it works.
    *dies laughing*
    I was yanking your chain, trying to inject a little humour in my 1001 questions..;-P

  14. admin
    admin says:

    The State Fair does a very similar kind of pre-application. You send in a letter with your entry fees, and they send back a letter with a registration code, then you take in your items with that code on them later. I think it’s not entirely standard across all shows, but it’s not an unusual practice.

    The Dallas Handweavers and Spinners Guild show, we just took in the form along with the piece and the entry fees.

  15. greyfortholly
    greyfortholly says:

    Actually, if you send me the photo that would be perfect!
    Have you tried to photoshop that bit that irks you?
    So you agree that it is a great photo?
    I shall try to photograph the necklace that I am presently working on when it is done so that you can see what I like working with.

    If it isn’t already indicated, my email is

    Thankyou so much!!!

  16. admin
    admin says:

    Hee hee. I’ve considered (after I get the electric spinner) seeing how fine I can go. this is still eight plies…. theoretically I can make a thrown single ply that will work for weft, and a two-ply of the organzine that would hold up as warp.

    The raw filaments coming out of China are about half as thick as what I do – but when you get very fine like that, you are at more risk of breakage and other problems. Maybe some day…

  17. admin
    admin says:

    Hee. The only way I’ve managed the patience for this, which is pretty tedious, is to figure a way to do the counting totally without looking at the thread, while watching TV.

  18. no_udontknowme
    no_udontknowme says:

    Hey.. saw that you friended me, so I’m friending you back… I can understand if you delete this reply from your LJ because, well… my icon isn’t exactly work safe.. LOL…

  19. no_udontknowme
    no_udontknowme says:

    LOL… both, I think… I’ve just issues recently (it’s in my LJ) with someone who was demanding I use LJ cuts and stuff so now I’m on this kick about being respectful… I know, it’s stupid! But I have family members who read my LJ so I wouldn’t want an icon like mine popping up for them, either… Such is life, I guess!

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