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New Pal

1 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2005 :  06:01:34 AM  Show Profile Send adunne a Private Message
Dear Experts,
I've read a number of postings but am still not sure what to do with the trash barrels of yarn my Mom and Gram left me. It has been stored in the cellar and has a musty smell to it. Any tips on how to wash or clean it without ruining it or snarling it? It's sort of their legacy to me, along with hundreds of needles, patterns, and a craft room full of unfinished projects!
Thanks in advance for your help,

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2069 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2005 :  06:26:36 AM  Show Profile Send Shalee a Private Message
First, in my humble opinion, I would make hanks out of each yarn. My instructions, following, are written as if all the yarn is wool. Use an umbrella swift or knitting noddy (sp?). Then, after you tie the hank in at least 3 places, to prevent tangles, soak the yarn in your preference of wool wash. Squish it a bit. Don't scrub. Make sure your water is a medium temperature. Be consistant with the water temperature through out the whole process. Do not run water directly on your yarn. OK, lecture aside, wash probably 2 times, then rinse several times and use a bit of vinegar in your last rinse. Now if you prefer, you could do another "final" rinse and add a conditioner. I scoop my wet yarn into a colander (?SP) to remove it from the water. Then I just push on it to drain the excess water. After you have finished washing and rinsing, lay the yarn on a towel and roll it up to remove even more of the water. Then I hang the hank over a non-metal (plastic coated, 10 for a dollar type) coat hanger, hooking the coat hanger to the shower curtain rod to drip dry. You may need to add a bit of weight to the hank. If so, just hook another coat hanger to the bottom of the hank and use a hand towel or towel threaded thru that hanger, for weight. Once dry you can store it as is or make balls. Personally I think I would store it in hanks as it would be easier, in the long run, to estimate yardage when you decide to use it.

Sharon in NW PA
I always wanted my own library but I didn't realize it would be all knitting books!
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United Kingdom
1281 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2005 :  06:55:06 AM  Show Profile Send Valk_scot a Private Message
Yes, what she said.

Sounds a lot of winding and unwinding though, if you`ve got barrels of the stuff. My first suggestion would be to tip it all out and sort it into three piles..."definately yes", "definately no" and "perhaps". Look at it closely during this sorting process for possible moth damage. If you find this, you might want to make a fourth pile called "trash" and put every last ball into it.

Then...get rid of the definately no balls to the thrift shop. Give the "perhaps" yarn a good airing out, on the porch in the sun or frost, depending on the weather your way, then store in paper grocery sacks with some lavender sachets untill you decide if you want them. Process the "definately yes" yarn as above.


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1356 Posts

Posted - 12/21/2005 :  07:44:54 AM  Show Profile  Send jaymeKnits a Yahoo! Message Send jaymeKnits a Private Message
The one thing I'll add to all of the good advice above is that you can wash it in a top loading wash machine. Fill the machine and add the wool wash. Turn off the machine. Put your skeins in and squish them down. Let them soak for 30 minutes. Skip the wash and rinse cycles and spin them. Make sure that no water is coming out during the spin, if it is then you are on the rinse cycle. Pull the skeins out and hang them to dry. I don't use weights because I think it takes the elasticity out of the yarn and causes guage issues. I just stick my arms into the skein and snap it straight a few times before I hang it.

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