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Meet Aurora Earth 100% unmercerized cotton

Our Aurora Earth 8/2, 100% unmercerized cotton is strong, versatile, long-wearing and a dream to weave!

Here are some great tips & hints from Madelyn van der Hoogt, editor of Best of Handwoven: Yarn Series—A Dozen Projects in 8/2 Cotton (eBook) .

Meet 8/2 100% Unmercerized Cotton
8/2 unmercerized cotton is a 2-ply cotton yarn at 3,360 yards per pound. It differs from mercerized, or “pearl,” cottons in that it does not go through the chemical process of mercerization that makes a yarn shiny. As a result, it has a matte appearance.

Although it does not differ greatly in yards per pound from 10/2 pearl cotton (4,200 yd/lb), its softer spin and greater texture makes it appear closer to 5/2 pearl cotton in relative thickness.

Unmercerization is its most important attribute, giving the yarn an absorbency that pearl cottons don’t have, even with repeated washings.

Appropriate Fabrics For 8/2 Cotton
The absorbency of 8/2 unmercerized cotton makes it the ideal fiber for towels and summer clothing, as well as all fabrics used in kitchen and dining areas.

Weave Structure & Sett
8/2 unmercerized cotton can be used for almost any weave structure. It produces a soft, flexible plain weave with a thirsty matte texture. Its lack of shine and smoothness make it slightly less appropriate for lace weaves than pearl cottons (the threads will not slide as easily to create lacy holes), but it is especiallyideal for textured weaves (waffle, huck, spot Bronson, M’s and O’s).

Warping, Weaving & Finishing Tips
8/2 unmercerized cotton is a strong, durable yarn. It is somwhat stickier than pearl cotton. If you warp front to back, don’t try to select randomly from more than two ends in a dent. It can abrade more easily than pearl cottons, so avoid draw-in (use a temple—stretcher—for wide fabrics).

The usual suggested sett for 8/2 cotton in plain weave is 20 ends and picks per inch for a firm, balanced fabric. If you have a light loom and tend to be a light beater, you can choose a sett of 18 ends and picks per inch to more easily achieve a balanced cloth (you can change the setts of the projects in this volume accordingly with successful results).

What Is Tracking?
As Margaret Gaynes points out (pages 1–2), wet-finishing a plain-weave fabric in 8/2 unmercerized cotton often results in tracking. This feature is a plus and adds to the textural quality of the cloth. Machine wash most 8/2 unmercerized cotton fabrics in hot water with detergent and machine dry.

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