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What is Spandex?

spandex lycra 20 den

Spandex is a man-made elastic fiber. It is derived from crude oil and is described in chemical terms as segmented polyurethane. It stretches under tension and recovers its original length when tension is relaxed. It can be stretched four to seven times its original length. It is combined with other ‘hard’ yarns to produce elastane stretch fabrics.

Essentially, Lycra® and Spandex are the same thing. Lycra® is a brand name. Spandex is the generic name used in the US and Canada for elastane. Elastane is the name used in the rest of the world.

KNITTED STRETCH FABRICS

1-Way Stretch (Circular Knits)

Circular knits containing spandex have maximum stretch in the width direction and limited stretch in the length direction. Cotton Spandex jersey is a common stretch circular knit.

 

2-Way Stretch (Warp Knit Raschel)

Raschel warp knits containing spandex have maximum elasticity in the length direction (warp) and limited stretch in the width (weft or fill). Raschels, Satins, power-nets and laces are all common raschel fabrics.

4-Way stretch (Warp knit Tricot)

Tricot warp knits stretch in all directions. They are eminently suitable for swimwear, costumes, body wear and active wear.

WASHING INSTRUCTIONS FOR SPANDEX CONTAINING FABRICS

Heat and light are the enemies of all stretch fabrics. Elastane yarns degrade over time when exposed to heat and light. Stretch fabrics should be treated with great care to ensure long-lasting comfort and performance.

HAND-WASH / COLD WATER MACHINE WASH

LOW-HEAT TUMBLE DRY / GENTLE CYCLE

LINE DRY (LOW-HEAT IRON)

DO NOT BLEACH

SUITABLE FOR DRY CLEAN

from http://www.spandexhouse.com/
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Standard Yarn Weight System

Yarn Weight Standards

Yarn Weight System:

Use this link from Craft Yarn Counsil to help identify Standard yarn weight

Categories of yarn, gauge ranges, and recommended needle and hook sizes

Yarn Weight Symbol
& Category Names
lace super fine fine light medium bulky super bulky jumbo
Type of
Yarns in
Category
Fingering
10-count
crochet
thread
Sock, Fingering, Baby Sport,
Baby
DK,
Light
Worsted
Worsted,
Afghan,
Aran
Chunky,
Craft,
Rug
Super Bulky,
Roving
Jumbo,
Roving
Knit Gauge
Range* in
Stockinette
Stitch to 4 inches
33–40**
sts
27–32
sts
23–26
sts
21–24
sts
16–20
sts
12–15
sts
7–11
sts
6 sts and fewer
Recommended
Needle in
Metric Size
Range
1.5–2.25
mm
2.25—
3.25
mm
3.25—
3.75
mm
3.75—
4.5
mm
4.5—
5.5
mm
5.5—
8
mm
8—
12.75 mm
12.75 mm and larger
Recommended
Needle U.S.
Size Range
000–1 1 to 3 3 to 5 5 to 7 7 to 9 9 to 11 11
to 17
17
and
larger
Crochet Gauge*
Ranges in
Single Crochet
to 4 inch
32–42
double
crochets**
21–32
sts
16–20
sts
12–17
sts
11–14
sts
8–11
sts
7–9
sts
6 sts and fewer
Recommended
Hook in Metric
Size Range
Steel***
1.6–1.4
mm
Regular hook
2.25 mm
2.25—
3.5
mm
3.5—
4.5
mm
4.5—
5.5
mm
5.5—
6.5
mm
6.5—
9
mm
9—
15 mm
15
mm and
larger
Recommended
Hook U.S.
Size Range
Steel***
6, 7, 8
Regular
hook B–1
B–1
to
E–4
E–4
to
7
7
to
I–9
I–9
to
K–10 1⁄2
K–10 1⁄2 to
M–13
M–13
to Q
Q
and
larger
* GUIDELINES ONLY: The above reflect the most commonly used gauges and needle or hook sizes for specific yarn categories.** Lace weight yarns are usually knitted or crocheted on larger needles and hooks to create lacy, openwork patterns. Accordingly, a gauge range is difficult to determine. Always follow the gauge stated in your pattern.*** Steel crochet hooks are sized differently from regular hooks—the higher the number, the smaller the hook, which is the reverse of regular hook sizing
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New Spandex: Lycra

spandex lycra 20 den

We’ve got new product in stock: clear cobweb spandex lycra den 20 – dtex 22. I’ve never seen anything so tiny and so strong and stretchy.

New spandex is available here.

Spandex also known as lycra, elastane is known for its exceptional elasticity. It is a very needed fiber for knitters and crocheters as it gives memory to the yarn and takes care of the loose parts (like bottoms of sleeves, or ribbon on a sweater).

Lycra only works with applied heat. When you press or steam the area containing lycra, it will visibly shrink, gathering the texture together. Try it on swatches first: you won’t believe the result. If your garment looks a little stretched after a while, just apply a puff of hot steam to the lycra area and it will be like new.

You can use it stranded with wool as well as with all cellulose fibers (cotton, rayon, linen, tencel, etc…) and silk. Do not change your gauge if you are only using it on a limited area. With wool, you will need to be cautious when applying heat, as you will want to shrink the lycra without felting the wool.

Sometimes, especially with a bigger or heavier yarn, you may want to use two ends of lycra alongside it, to give it a stronger elasticity.

Thank you!