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Color Matching – The Process

July 15th, 2014 at 17:59 pm » Comments (0)

Got a really good start “publishing” what has turned out to be much more of a project than I had hoped.

Although much more work to be done, and a number of “refinements” planned (better color, home town information, etc)

It was supposed to be an easy project – It really started as a project to cross reference the different color names used by SLon & CLon since they are made in the same mill, but marketed under two different brand names. ( and that is a story for another day )

The post it note had been hanging out for quite awhile, but Adrienne Gaskell’s sharing of her “professional crafter” cord and thread recommendations, kicked it up the “get it done” list considerably.

Even though I do sell SLON, after growing up in Yonkers and spending many a day riding my bike to and up one of the more impressive hills of Yonkers, Odell Ave to visit the nice folks at Consumers Union all sorts of questions – generally I try to buy things I want to review. Just seems more polite than to ask a supplier to give you something and then if you don’t like it – you might have to repay their generosity with a less than happy review.

So what is the process? First getting comparable samples, next to compare them using a true color light sources.

For textiles, I also like to use at least one or more manufacturer color cards – and generally for nylon and Polyester – Robison Anton Super Brite Poly is helpful.
The Robison Anton Rayon color card works well for Rayon and Silk. And last but not least, sometimes their J-Metallic.
Robison Anton threads are among my favorites for traditional Japanese Braiding, silk is just not very often in the budget.

It would be remiss of me not to also thank E L Wood and Franklin Braid – both samples for all the cord colors.

Okay, so with samples and color cards in hand, next up is
wait for a nice day, get out on the deck and compare again. If you live in the Mid-Atlantic region of the East Coast – you don’t need me to tell you that those kinds of days have been in short supply. Especially during the window of time needed when the light is “right” (11am to 1pm and then again about 4pm to 6pm during the summer)

Because I am using some commercially produces cords with a braided sheath/cover the surprisingly easiest colors samples were generously provided by E L Wood Braiding and Bart at eXtremePara.com.

In the middle of all the information gathering was a “gift request” from a family member – so sport team colors has been added to the project and this is the current focus in how to present this. Of course, that also meant finding a way to provide information to crafters without having to discuss the issue with the intellectual property folks at the NFL or any other professional sport just because I want to help you (and myself) make affordable gifts for our family and friends.

There is still a lot of work to be done, more materials like threads and beads and findings to compare and report
Would welcome your feedback – here is how the “chart” started – scribbled on paper with a pen (yes, people do still use those kinds of tools)

HomeTown PMC-C RA-Poly SLon E L Wood CLon Web-Safe
All Football White White Snow White White White Web-Safe
15+ Black Black Black Black Black Web-Safe

It is planned to add to the blog with more about the process but the specific information will be elsewhere. Click here to see is where it is headed.
or cut and past in an new window:

Let me know what you think

SuperLon (S-Lon) Q&A

July 30th, 2013 at 10:54 am » Comments (0)

SuperLon Cords & Threads - ItsAllJustString
Fear Not, I have not given up on the New/Old Dr Who project but the recent receipt of a much better photo has created the need for a Plan B, or more correctly probably a Plan Z -and of course take care of enough business so we can continue to eat and maybe even get the mortage caught up.

Meanwhile, over the last few weeks, I have done, for our business purposes, quite a bit of “research” into Cords and threads and specially, SuperLon (S-Lon).

As part of my only have one place to update info project – the information has been placed in the Resources links at

Hope you find it helpful


PS, with any luck at all, we should have listings for the available SuperLon (S-Lon) colors by style completed within the next day or so.

What Wheat Braids With

July 14th, 2011 at 17:13 pm » Comments (1)

As most know, I can be a real PIA about technique and proper respect for traditions, but when it comes to materials, seem willing to try pretty much anything

Never forget my motto: If It Bends, It Braids

Not unlike the new spinner who is willing to try everything including at least one shot at Dryer Lint. NOTE: Does not spin into anything usable, definitely not a braiding option.

Non-Standard disclaimer, although I have sold and still do sell most of these, that has little to do with anything beyond if I did not like them, I would not sell them. These are tools and techniques I use and have in my personal stash.

Hemp can be very iffy – IF the hemp you use is intended for Macrame, then likely it was too stiff. You will want to find a finer thread and may need to treat it like linen, which does require some additional preparation and finishing to soften it a bit. There are some hemps for weaving and knit and crochet which are softer, but not something I use very often for braids.

A popular Practice product is Satin Cord – for the geeks among us (yes pots, kettles, etc) Satin is not a type of material, it is a weave structure that can be made in many materials, traditionally silk, sometimes cotton and other “could be shiny materials” In this case Satin is the type of woven fabric which is being used to cover a core.

There was a time when all Satin cording were made from silks, now they are mostly nylon (made in the USA) or polyester (made in China, etc). The core is usually a cotton or cotton poly or poly piping. It principal use is for embellishment for home dec, but that has never stopped the beaders, braiders, scrappers, and other crafters among us, from what was that phrase my WWII Vet father liked so much “Appropriated for Better Use”.

The smallest and almost impossible to find is “bug tail” which is .5mm and when you do there is almost no color selection

Petite – Size 0 – aka/ mouse tail is also less available than other sizes,
and approximately 1-1.4mm (don’t ask me why it varies so much – it just does )

Light Weight – Size 1 – sometimes called Rat Tail is about 1.5 to 1.9mm usually “listed” as 2mm because when flattened it is closer to that. More available than Bug or Mouse, but still often limited colorways.

Heavy weight, size 2 – “true” Rat Tail – is near to 3mm – the most commonly available, including often in stores that sell sewing supplies “by the yard”

With very rare exceptions I do not like the look of varigated which, since that range is always either non-existent or limited – I rather like the way BeadSmith’s new product is set up – 4 solids in 3yd pieces in a package.

S-LON (BeadSmith) – C-Lon (CLon) updated 2013-Sep-15

Note added 2014: Along with a change in my feelings about braiding on a disc or plate has come a change in my feelings about SLon (aka/CLon). Since early 2013 I have been working with various weights of these cord as part of jewelry projects, on loom, off loom and of course in braiding.

These are now my personal favorites for use in braiding as bead carriers. For more product information, please visit my SuperLon (S-Lon) Q&A ) opens in a new window.

SLon/CLon do not presently have identical color line and what is often not clear it is that both brands have different “weights” one is similar to a #18 Mastic and the others are like D or E Nymo

S-Lon and C-Lon are primarily beading thread/cords. They will not have the same hand as either cotton, rayon or silk but are somewhat flexible.

Many seem to like this thread when the braid involves beadwork, I am enjoying using the Micro, D and AA for prestringing of beads, on and off loom bead work. In the middle is the Fine, and that is what I am most often using to prestring Japanese and most of the new shapes from the Czechs. I am also ‘mostly” using the Fine weight for on/off loom bead work. The heavier two choices, Bead and macrame in my collection are reserved for bead carrier in many projects.

For a better beginning, and in just about every “non-sample of pattern” braid, I like to use either FlexRite or SoftFlex as a core where the desired result is NOT to fatten the braid. With proper planning, this can make the finishing of the braid much more professional looking. (tutorial eventually)

Most bead shops and many fiber business carry both – sometimes I do and sometimes I don’t

Another fiber I like is Asian Knotting Cords. These are braided cords, in diameters similar to the Satin Cord – although availability and colors are often a problem. I prefer the .8 but kept a supply of the 1.3 for knotting purposes particularly 6 of the 8 Clover Asian Knot templates seem happier with the thicker cord.


Biron is a wonderful Japanese product, about the only current importer for Biron in the USA would be Braidershand. Jacqui Carey in the UK has carried Biron in the past and today offers a Japanese Rayon called SHIRUKKU but as Jacqui notes in her very practical way, if you just say Biron, braiders will know what you are talking about.

As possible substitute, many of us use Rayon MACHINE (its finer) embroidery thread – You can find these in sewing and fabric stores, there are many brands and which will best suit your needs will be determined by “trial & error” My preference has always been Robison-Anton,

For quick warps – I personally like Presencia’s El Molino which is a
multi strand 100% Rayon divisible floss with a really soft hand in the finished braids.

For fine threads to make bundles similar to Biron, i prefer Presencia or Robison Anton Rayons and for metallics, either YLI’s Metallic or the J-Metallic threads when there is a greater need to satisfy the magpie in us all.

When Wools seems to be called for and as I continue to work my way thru Makiko-san’s 2nd Treatise -n Andean Braid,I have been using several different lace weight yarns, most recently Ella Rae Lace Merino and am looking forward to the new Juniper Moon yarn, Findley which is a Merino/Silk blend. The other wool I have been using is Araucania’s Ranco Sock.

For the Wool braider (and I have been working my way thru Makiko Tada’s Comprehensive Treatise of Braids Vol II – Andean Braids Madeira’s Burmilana Machine Embroidery Thread is ideal – in my opinion. Burmilana is comparable to a SEWING 12 wt thread (not identical to a cotton 12wt mercerized cotton, but close) and is lovely 50/50 wool acrylic blend and offers a huge range of colors. It is not really “in the budget” for my personal stash but for this book’s projects, well there other things I can live without. So I practice the braids with cotton floss and make the “final sample” in Burmilana.

For Cottons, I have been using Sullivan’s or Presencia Floss (pretty much opposite ends of the price spectrum – Since Sullivan’s got the production issues settled nicely, even with only a bit more than 400 colors it is a good and economical choice –

For making up a quick and thick warp for practice, I was really please when KFI decided to bring back my favorite cotton – was King Tut (not to be confused with Superior’s cotton thread) under the Ella Rae brand as Phoenix.
Hopefully it will do well and they will expand the colors. Meanwhile for Braid Anatomy its 24 colors is adequate and there are several shades of each primary/secondary so interested visual can effect.

I have used a lot of pearl cottons in all the sizes (3,5,8,12,16) but just don’t like the hand of the finished braids and they are not thick enough – guess I will just have eBay what is hanging about,

Sullivan’s new metallics floss really stunned me with its gentle hand and I am rather liking the samples of their new perle/pearl cotton line – so looking forward to seeing it in person at the trade show next month.

I wish my personal budget allowed for the Silk and Biron bundles but it does not.

Braiding with yarn and wire are, for the most part, a topic for another day and at least so far as the wire is concerned, I am sort of waiting to see what happens now that Beadalon bought Artistic. In the past have found that Artistic Wire in the 30 gauge works nicely “most of the time”. (NOTE: 2014-Look for more info in Summer 2014 when we hope to be introducing a new product specifically for braiding with wire and “really heavy threads” _

Now if I could just remember who borrowed my day stretcher so there would be enough time to both get stuff into the catalog AND spend more time with pretty stuff running thru my fingers….

Enjoy the Making.


P.S. Carol Franklin’s Braidweaver.com, has some really excellent tips for Braiders, my favorite is to use multiple spools and then warp many threads with each pass.

P.S.Jr – Jan 2914 updated some details, made typo corrections
Look for a major rewrite in summer 2014 – and of course a section in the new forum for discussion.

Crochet – Thread Size Information

February 11th, 2007 at 04:10 am » Comments (4)

One of the most commonly asked questions about Perle Cotton for use in Thread Crochet has to do with a size

Because Presencia threads are among my personal favorites I use them as the basis of my comparison/reference charts.

So many things can effect how a thread “measures” (Humidity, spinning, storage, how it is “put up”) that is next to Impossible – While not exact, since sizing differs between Perle & Crochet threads, the following is a “ROT-Rule Of Thumb”.

(added 2008)It is very important to know that there are DIFFERENT “standards” for Wool, Cotton, Linen & Silk. The chart below is specific to Cotton since that is the most common thread used by Crochets

Wheat’s US-Metric Steel Crochet Hook Reference*

Last Updated: 2008-12-10 © 2000-2008 WheatCarr

Col 1
Col 2
Col 3
Col 4
Soft Touch
Col 5
Col 6
Col 7
Col 8
Col 9
1 0.40mm No 16 No 24 1
2 0.45mm No 23 2
3 80-100 0.50mm No 14 No 15 No 14 3
4 0.55mm No 13 4
5 70 – 80 0.60mm No 12 No 12 No 14 No 14 No 12 5
6 0.70mm No 13 No 11 6
7 50 – 80 0.75mm No 10 No 10 No 12 No 14 No 13 No 10 7
8 0.85mm no-name No 13 No 9 8
9 40 – 60 0.90mm No 8 No 8 no-name No 14 No 8 9
10 0.95mm No 13 No 7 10
11 20 – 30 1.00mm No 6 No 6 no-name No 12 No 12 No 12 No 6 11
12 1.05mm No 11 12
13 1.10mm No 11 No 5 13
14 1.15mm No 10 14
15 18 – 30 1.25mm No 4 No 4 No 8 No 9 No 10 No 4 15
16 1.30mm No 10 No 3 16
17 1.40mm No 9 No 8 17
18 10 – 20 1.50mm No 2 No 2 No 7 No 8 No 7 No 8 No 2 18
19 1.60mm No 6 No 1 19
20 1.65mm No 7 20
21 1.70mm No 5 21
22 8 – 18 1.75mm No 0 No 0 No 4 No 4 No 6 No 0 22
23 1.80mm No 6 23
24 1.90mm No 5 24
25 2.00mm A-0 No 4 2/0 25
26 2.20mm No 16 3/0 26
27 2.25mm 2/o 27
28 2.30mm B-1 B 28
29 2.50mm 3/o 4/0 29
Col 1
Col 2
Col 3
Col 4
Soft Touch
Col 5
Col 6
Col 7
Col 8
Col 9
* Based on Data Current as of February 2007,
  updated to add photos on 2007-May-02
  updated to add Tulip on 2007-May-24
  updated to add on 2008-Sep-14

* Thread Hook Size Suggestions used courtesy of Clover® Needlecraft, Inc

* ALWAYS check/measure the diameter of your hook
– Older Hooks often do NOT have the same Diameter as those made today.

* If you find an error, please do email me with the correction.

Average Yards per pound is how many yards of thread you would get on a one-pound cone.
If you have a large project, buying coned yarns can be very economical.

Most balls of crochet cotton seem to have about 400-450 yds

So using an old J&P Coats pattern which called for J&P COATS Size 20: (GREEN LABEL) 24 balls of White or Ecru. which, according to a Trademark infringement case:
” which is wound on spools of 200- yard lengths, “

This project calls about 4800 yards of Size 20 thread. If you selected some commonly available size 20 thread at the best price I could fine “on-line” you would need at least 12 balls at $3.27 – add in one ball to be sure you have enough, and the shipping so call it $45.

Now if you bought 2# of one of my favorite 10/2 Mercerized Cottons from WEBS

Even the Varigated is only $18.95 per pound
so for $40 you not only have plenty for project, you save at least $5 and have extra for “something else.
and you would save even more if your total order of discountables (did I mention I have not very often not qualified for at least the 20% discount

In case you haven’t guessed, WEBS is a long time (been a customer for more than 30 years) favorite place to shop.

In fact, I have been know to drive 150 miles (each way) OUT of the way to visit them

They have a famous back room. Think Wholesale club like Sam’s or Costco, but all yarn “buys” – the first time I went there, they gave me a stupid market size shopping cart and pushed me thru the door, “See you in a few hours – we’ll holler when its close to closing time” Mind you this was at 10am and yes, I was there to be hollered at (although we did leave for lunch and come back for round two)



P.S. I promise to add the WPI as soon as I find where I put that piece of paper

If you have different information, please share, there is no such thing as too much information when it comes to the materials and tools we all love to use.

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    Wheat Wrote WHAT !?!Assumes ONLY YOU can properly and completely perform the necessary due diligence to determine your course of action in life or business - ALL article, like all on this blog, are a starting point, not the last word by any means. While I hope it is worth more, its value is exactly the same as what you paid for it – no dollars.
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    Wheat Wrote WHAT !?! is also where Wheat writes about products she uses and occasionally mentions ones best avoided. These may also but not always and not surprisingly are sold at ItsAllJustString,com
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    Wheat Wrote WHAT !?! welcome your comments - just remember - we want ot discuss the point not the person unless they are public usually political person.
    Wheat Wrote WHAT !?! is where Wheat writes primarily about things she uses and sells thru ItsAllJustString,com
    Wheat Wrote WHAT !?! blogamentries are based on personal experience and opinon. Your experience and opinion may differ. "what works for wheat may not work for you"
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