Thursday, July 21, 2011

Do you recycle ramie sweaters?

I have misgivings about ramie, but I found a sweater that was 40% silk, 30% nylon, 15% ramie, 11% wool, and 4% other fiber, and I decided to buy it. It was a quarter, so I would not be out much money if it didn't work out.

I found it reasonably easy to take apart and unravel, but I did not like the feel of the ramie. It was dusty and the texture reminds me of soft paper. Even with only 15% ramie, I could feel it was in there.

Since I am not attached to this yarn, I thought it would be fun to blotch it with McCormick Neon purple and blue. The yarn itself is a striped gray tweed. I'm hoping this will be fun to weave into scarves with the colors appearing at random throughout the work.
I will probably avoid ramie in any quantity from here on out. I just don't like it. The texture reminds me of the feel of an old wadded up unused tissue that has spent the winter in your coat pocket. Soft, yet dusty and vaguely unpleasant. It's not my thing for knitting or weaving.

Have you ever taken apart ramie sweaters for the yarn or re-purposed them in some other way? What did you make with the sweater? There are tons of these sweaters around, and if there is a project for them, I might reconsider my stance on ramie.

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