It’s time to start a new knitting project, which means ordering more wool. On this occasion, Malabrigo Worsted, a super-soft wool though with a tendency to felt.
Many of the smaller wool manufacturers supply their wool in hanks rather than balls. As far as I can tell, this is for two reasons:
- Scale of enterprise – winding balls of wool takes expensive machinery.
- Aesthetics – hanks of wool are pretty!
Please let me know if there are other reasons.
Hanks do need winding into balls of wool. Don’t try to knit straight from a hank. You’ll end up with a knotted bird’s nest of wool that could prove impossible to unravel.
There’s equipment out there to help you wind your ball of wool, but so far I’ve winced at the cost. For now I rely on my hands!
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
- Hanks of wool
- A pair of scissors or snippers
- Two chairs
- That’s it!
Unloop your hank of wool with a gentle twist.
Snip or unknot the series of thread loops keeping the hank together.
Don’t try to start winding this into a ball with the hank of wool resting in your lap. Won’t work. You need tension to keep the strands of wool cleanly separated. Enter the chair backs of most chipped magnificence!
Turn on the telly, place a glass of wine within reach, find a loose end of wool and start rolling. That’s it!
I need five hanks of wool for my current project, but I’m not morphing them all into balls in one session. Why not?
- I lose the will to live.
- There’s a theory that ball tension starts to stretch the wool if it’s hanging around for too long, waiting to be used.
A tension square is knitted, blocked, pinned and measured. (Always knit a tension square. They make nice mug coasters!)
And then it’s time to begin knitting. Preparation is everything, in knitting as in life. Actually, preparation and coffee. They’re everything. Actually, coffee. That’s everything.