A Different Kind of Fiber

Hey there, my cold-handed friends.  Here I thought the best part of the last post was my restaurant-ordering success, but most of you picked up on the little bit about my hands being cold all the time.

Maybe you all know this, but thought I’d pass along a little knowledge I have from my days of spinning and knitting.

Did you know that angora (rabbit wool) is seven times warmer than wool?  Cashmere is sixteen times warmer than wool!  And of course wool is much much warmer than cotton.  Silk is also much warmer than cotton.  You notice I’m not giving stats on manmade fibers.  Because they are warm, most of them, even if they are not supposed to be.  Because they can’t ‘breathe.’  Yes, I am a natural fiber snob.  I can really tell the difference when I wear natural fiber, and I always prefer it.

Anyway, you might look for some angora or angora blend socks and/or gloves.  A word about angora.  The reason people think they are allergic to it is because when it is commercially harvested, they shave everything off the rabbit–short hairs along with the long.  And so when it is spun, the short hairs just shed and shed out of the yarn or garment.  If you are so lucky as to know a hand-spinner, you would find a remarkable difference in the yarn spun from ‘prime angora.’  All the fiber is hand-plucked (when the rabbit is shedding) so each fiber is the same length, and will stay nicely in the spun yarn.

There is some cashmere out there, but it is usually pretty pricey, and not all cashmere is the same.  The reason some of it is cheaper is because it is coarser, and might even have some ‘hair’ in it.  That is why it might be itchy or unpleasant to wear.  Again, prime cashmere is a ‘whole ‘nother animal.’

I am sensitive to ‘itchy’ natural fibers, but I have noticed that they don’t bother me on my hands and feet.  After the ‘cold hands and feet discussion, I dug out an old pair of gloves that I had dyed, spun, and knit for myself a long time ago.  I wore them last night and this morning on my walks with Noah–heaven!

Here’s a couple of pictures I snapped as I was driving out through the snow the other day.  There was a herd of about six deer and one turkey–was the turkey showing off for the deer???


9 thoughts on “A Different Kind of Fiber

  1. Look at that turkey! He seems very proud LOL.

    I itch with natural fibers, too – particularly around my neck. I like sleeping in silk in summer, but love my flannel jammies!

    I laughed when you said you were surprised at what most of us picked up on. That happens with my posts all the time. I am always surprised at what part of it gets the most comments!

  2. Wow that turkey was in full strut! There must have been a hen nearby (I know more about turkeys and their habits than I want to know…don’t ask why). 🙂

    I haven’t seen the ducks or the geese lately, so no pictures. Maybe they’ll be out there tomorrow.

  3. Feeling the cold is the one thing I dread about losing weight in the winter. I thought I was the only weird one until I read this post http://www.priorfatgirl.com/2009/01/ugle-truth-part-iv.html I think the post is titled The Ugly Truth and posted Jan. 26th 2009.

    Jen@priorfat girl described how I felt after losing nearly 50 lbs. No one at home believed me. They all thought I was making it up when I said how cold I felt and got rugged up. I was so glad to read her validation. It really does happen this way.

    Tuck up snugly. Soon you will be enjoying warmer weather while we head into the cold but no snow here, just cold winds.


  4. hives and can’t breathe – so no wool of any kind here. I once went to a lecture on wool (quilt guild) – sat in the very back of a huge room and didn’t touch a thing – had hives all over my torso after 30 minutes and had to leave.

  5. What pretty gloves – so amazing that you spun and dyed the wool ALONG with knitting them! I didn’t know all about the differences in wools – I will have to pay attention next Fall, when I’ll be buying some clothes to keep me warm.

    Cool animal pics – so random to see the turkey like that!

  6. dear friend.
    I know.
    I am tenacious.
    I think you are soo flippin talented.
    please to have me first on yer list if you decide to sell your quilts.

    xo xo

    ME 🙂

  7. I too am super impressed by the gloves-from-scratch!!!

    And wow, who knew that turkeys like that still roam around? I’m such a city mouse!

    • Yeah, Juice, they were actually on the endangered or protected list or something around here. For a while there were large flocks of turkeys roaming the land. Gardeners consider them quite the pest. Haven’t seen as many in the past few years.

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