This week I was digging around in the pictures on my phone and found this:

springAnd, it dawned on me, I’m a bit of a Coil junkie and decided I would share with you some of my thoughts on spinning coils.  For those of you who have not yet spun a coiled yarn, the concept is simple:  you spin a single and then ply it over a core yarn, wrapping the single around the core.

Over the last couple of years, I have done a number of experiments with different fiber preparations, single thicknesses and other techniques and am going to share some of them here.  As I was thinking about this little body of work I collected, it dawned on me that the “moral” of this story is that if you like a technique, it is wonderful to go “deep” into it by spinning it in as many ways as you can imagine. 

So, let’s take a look at some of my coil experiments.  All of my experiments start with a variation on this question:  “what would happen if…?”  First consider that the coiled yarn at the top of the post is our baseline yarn:  a smooth batt and an even, medium weight single.  Now, onto the variations:

“What would happen if I spun a coiled yarn made from a somewhat textured batt and spun the single a little unevenly?”


“What would happen if I spun a micro coil and then plyed it so that the coiled yarn twisted on itself in places?”

Micro Pig tails
“What happens if I create a very loft textured batt and spin a really fat single and then coil the fat, fluffy single?”

Fat 1

Fat 2

And, finally:   “what happens if I ply a coil with a coil?” 


Double close up

These are just a few of the coil variations I have made over the past few years!  I have a whole pile of fiber set aside for other ideas I have.  I won’t pretend that these yarns aren’t a lot of work and sometimes slow going to get things to look the way I want, but I love them.   Do you have some pretty coiled yarns to show me?  I would love to see them…if you want them included in a follow up post, please email your images to me at  Until next time, all my fibery best, Arlene

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5 thoughts on “Crazy about Coils

  • March 30, 2015 at 2:04 am

    Beautiful!!! I am going to have to spin some up for the felted scarf I am working on… what great fringe/felted design material!

  • March 30, 2015 at 6:26 am

    Hi Arlene, you are a Great Teacher! I also Love Coils, Coils are the reasen because now i’m Spinning. I made a fat Single, then played it with Navjaro. I Wear it like it is as a scarf. I will Send you a picture with Mail. Thanks a Lit If sharing 🙂 greetings from Germany petra

  • March 30, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    I’ve only made a coiled yarn once and it wasn’t a roaring success. I’m going to have to try it again. Love that plied coiled/coiled yarn.

  • April 11, 2015 at 10:23 pm

    I’ve just finished a coil plied coil, really pleased how it’s turned out.


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