Thursday, November 3, 2011

Tips: Chinese Knotting Cord - Unwinding Skeins

Some of the Chinese Knotting Cord comes in skeins of about 82 yards each. The Medium Weight is about 1.2 to 1.5 mm in diameter and the Fine Weight, about 0.8 mm in diameter. The skeins are hand wound so yardage is approximate. Dye lot vary as the skeins are hand dyed. The dye lots of the Medium and Fine weight cord do not always match. For your convenience in addition to skeins, I also sell these cords by 10 yard cards bypassing your having to deal with skeins > Chinese Knotting Cord

If you get Chinese Knotting Cord by skeins, here is the best way to unwind them:

Untwist the skein carefully and place it on a umbrella swift or skein winder. I prefer my swift vertically as shown in this picture below. Lay the skein as evenly as possible before removing the ties. Untie the knots at the ends. It is fairly clear where the ends are, they are knotted together and create the tie that encircle the skein.  Before proceeding, tuck the end you are not using into the spoke so it will be out of your way. Then unwind the skein onto a spool or a card.

If you do not have a swift, use the arms of a friend, the back of a chair, or any other way to keep the skein open.

Occasionally the cord is hard to unwind. Resist the impulse to pull the cord over and under - do this as a last resort only. Sometimes moving the cord or turning the skein around on the swift does the trick. It loosens the cord, making unwinding easier again.

See Chinese Knotting Cord Selections > Chinese Knotting Cord
Get an Umbrella Swift/Skein Winder > Tool Section
Read a weaving entry written by Peggy Ostercamp >  Unwinding Skeins

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I only use the 10-30 or so yard skeins. I have found it easy to unroll the skeins from the original twist to the next level where you are able to make a circle with the cord. Here is where it becomes trickier. If you have 4 hands available to you, it is much easier. sit facing your partner who will be using his hands in place of the board insert you read about below. 1.Once you have established where the ends are tied together, you can either cut the tied ends, cut one tied end, or untie them. Do not under any circumstances touch or mess with your circle of cord during this process as you WILL make it tangle. 2. insert a board or something wide and sturdy directly into the center of the circle of cord strands. Make sure the two loose ends are on opposite ends of the board and hanging down to the approximate same length. 3. Remove the string one strand at a time by alternating pulling off the loose cord on the right a full or half circle and then the loose strand on the left the same amount, either a full or half circle. 4. Throw these strands in opposite directions, do not let them tangle together. do not try to remove one strand faster than the other. 5. the strands may cross, so you will have to be vigilant in throwing the strands in order while uncrossing the strands that may have crossed. 6. By the time you have finished unwinding (one or two minutes), you will have 2 piles of string. Do not gather or mix them together. Gently find a loose end in one of the piles and start rolling your ball.