Monday, September 12, 2011

On Vegetative Matter

Recently, I wrote about some handspun I'm using, and described it as including a very small amount of vegetative matter. I didn't realize at the time that my words would cause any discomfort, because I actually like a little vegetative matter in my yarn every now and then. Let me explain.

I'm a big lover of Noro yarns, especially Noro Kureyon. I think it is a stroke of genius on the part of Mr. Noro that he keeps a small portion of "the world of nature" in each
See the lovely Noro Kureyon on the top left side?
skein of Kureyon worsted weight. It is a subtle reminder of the process that produces the gorgeously-colored yarn that will become some thing that will bring me and others yarny, creative joy.

I also know that not everyone agrees with me regarding Noro Kureyon. I have had several exchanges with others who have expressed their dissatisfaction with either Kureyon's vegetative matter or its slightly rougher-than-normal texture. And, of course, vegetarians and vegans also couldn't be too thrilled to find reminders of the animals that produced the fiber, no matter how vegetative the form of the reminder. 

However, in a world of mass production and over processing (in yarns and every other aspect of our culture) I like Kureyon's more rustic characteristics. It has a definite place in my design scheme, alongside all the more refined yarns (and you can inject your favorite yarn of choice here - Kidsilk Haze, Tilli Tomas, Sundara - the list is longer than my arm).

All of which brings me back to the wonderful handspun I'm currently working with. I like the fact that I know exactly which animal, from which farm, and through whose hands this exact vegetative matter passed before it got to my project.

So to those of you awesome handspinners: proudly embrace your vegetative matter. It is a rustic, beautiful, unique thing. And I like it exactly that way, thank you very much.


  1. I thought of you as I was spinning this weekend. You are right...there is a unique part of handspun than mass produced yarn can't ever come near to duplicating. I purposely left the nubs in and it will be a gorgeous yarn.

  2. I agree wholeheartedly. I smile every time I find a little bit of hay in my yarn...

  3. I completely agree with you on this, Denise, and I've been a vegetarian for nearly 25 years! :)
    When I make a raw fleece piece, and find myself picking out hay 'buds'(?)
    from time to time, it only makes me smile. XXO-

  4. I like the rustic feel of such yarns so I'm siding with you here :)

  5. I agree! I don't mind picking out grassy bits every now and then.

  6. I will look at the bits of hay now with a new and more positive perspective :-)

  7. Word to that, girl! I can't wait to experience VM in my skeins of Noro!