I bought a bag full of navy colored worsted weight yarn at a thrift store. But there were no labels in it to help me identify the fiber it's made of. I feels rough enough I thought it might be wool. I lit end of a scrap with a match and it turned to ash, leading me to believe it is a natural fiber. Last night I knitted small swatch and washed it in hot water in the sink to see if it would felt. I've never felted before so not sure if I did it right. It fuzzed up in texture but it didn't shrink a bit. I even stirred it in some boiling water for a few minutes, and nadda!
Does anyone know anyway i can try to determine what the fiber content is? Would be nice to know what I'm working with.
What did it smell like when you burnt it? Wool smells like burning hair. (If you've never smelt burning hair, take out one of your own hairs and burn it to find out what it smells like.) Acrylic will melt - I don't know about other synthetics. A wool/acrylic blend would probably melt and smell like burning hair. Carol
Thanks for that link. that was very interesting. I burned one of my hairs as suggested and I think the yarn had a stronger smell. I did come to my wits and dig out a skein of 100% virgin wool I had in my stash and burnt a piece of it too. The two behaved similarly. I knitted a swatch with the known wool and felted it. Which felted some but not alot. I've heard of washable wool, but what makes it washable or unfeltable? Isn't a man made fiber such as acrylic added to it? Guess I'll be buying new yarn just to be on safe side. Thanks for that link..putting it in favorites for future reference.
If a wool yarn is treated in a certain way to smooth out the cuticle you can wash it and it will not felt or shrink. It certainly sounds like you could go ahead and use the yarn for a project that you don't want to felt. Did you like the way it looked after you had washed it and it bloomed? I would probably use it for hats or mittens or slippers if it is too rough for a sweater. The "blooming" effect would make hats or mittens warmer.