Posted by Steve Price on 10-24-2002 08:50 AM:

Wool Quality

Hi Michael,

Among the many things in your Salon that attracted my interest, there was something about wool quality about which I'd like to hear more. You wrote, In a flatweave the wool must be of quite higher quality than in a pile weave. One views nearly the whole length of the fiber.

I've never thought of wool quality as being related to the uniformity of the fiber along its length, but this implies that to be the case. Would you mind expanding on this?


Steve Price

Posted by Michael Bischof on 10-25-2002 10:14 AM:

Hi everybody,

I did not mean "wool uniformity". For flatweaves one needs better wool in the following sense:
the yarn finally is exposed so that one views them from the side. The dye absorption and the dye saturation therefore should be better. With a piled piece one can view only a small fraction of the used yarn so with a lower quality one could come to a similar looking result.
The second thing is performance: in an intact pile the yarns are protecting themselves by sticking to itself. In Flatweaves they are exposed. Long fibers to make up the yarns are essential - for pile pieces this is less important.
The lustre should be the best available in both cases.



Posted by R. John Howe on 10-26-2002 06:00 AM:

Michael -

Just to follow your last point a bit.

Are "dye absorption" and "dye saturation" affected by "wool quality?" Or are you mostly referring to dye qualities?

And while it is true that the large side sections of the wool used in flatweaves are visible, and that only relatively smaller top portions of pile wool are, it would still seem that pile wool would have to meet a similar standard of coloration since the particular part of a given strand that will be visible once the knot has been tied cannot be predicted in advance.

Are we not following the distinction you are making here?


R. John Howe

Posted by Michael Bischof on 10-26-2002 09:32 AM:

Hallo everybody, hallo John and Steve,

Yes, dye absorption is affected by wool quality a lot. Or, in other terms: if you dye (together in the whole process, from first wash till final finishing after making the dye lakes) two different qualities of wool at the end one of them will show a more saturated dye than another, lower wool quality .

What I wanted to stress is that for flatweaves one needs a higher wool quality in this respect than for pile carpets. For the latter a better wool is welcome, but not that much indispensable like it would be with flatweaves.



Posted by David R.E. Hunt on 11-15-2002 10:19 PM:

Wool qualities

Michael B. and All- Interesting, this use of long staple fibered wool, with the result a most efficient absorbtion of dyes. Are these wools heterogenous or homogenous in long staple composition? Is this the result of a discriminate selection of wool(i.e. wools from shoulder, rump, ect.) during /after shearing and before carding, or does this wool proceed from a specialized breed of sheep? Or even correspond to the season of shearing? Also, if this kelim wool is the product of a discriminative selection, what is done with the remaining wools? Felting, pile weaving? In a different vein, is it possible to obtain DNA from carpet wools suitable for genetic testing? A pet theory of mine would state that the animal husbandry practiced by the various weaving cultures/civilizations may have discernably altered the genetic composition of these domestic sheep to the extent that the expansion and migration of the gene pool(s) could be qualified and quantified across time and geographic distribution. Thus, we could answer the question, are the wools from an early Caucasian rug more closely related to the wools of a sheep from either Samarkand, Konya, of Isfahan?- Dave

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