Resting Singles before Plying

I keep seeing questions on spinning groups asking

Do I have to leave my singles to rest before plying?

There are no spinning police so you can do what you want to do.

Many of us can’t wait to ply our yarn so just get on with it. There are a few reasons why you may want to let your singles rest.  Singles has twist (obviously) when they rest some of that twist ‘sets’ or becomes ‘dormant’ – ie it is less obvious BUT it is still there.  When it is washed the twist becomes active again.

Plying with a singles with dormant twist makes some things easier

  • Any singles with high twist can pigtail when plying. The tighter the twist the more challenging plying can be. Leaving it on the bobbin overnight or even for a few days  can make plying easier, as can using a tensioned lazy kate  (making your own  lazy kate )
  • If you are plying from a centre pull ball a rested yarn makes it less likely to become a spaghetti mess.
  • If one bobbin has been spun days, weeks or even months ago and the 2ndis fresh, even if they have the same amount of twist, one will have active and the other dormant twist so they may act differently making it difficult to get a nice even ply. Leaving the fresh one for 24hrs or even overnight can make a big difference.

There are a few times when you DON’T want to rest your yarn.

If you are spinning a cable (link to how to spin a cable)  It is better NOT to rest the plied yarn before plying these together again for the cable as that makes the cable less likely to snap into place. Like any spinning you CAN leave it but may be more difficult to get the right amount of twist and the cable may not appear until it is finished.

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