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Smooth as silk

Some years ago when I started knitting and crocheting, my mum gave me a load of crochet thread and hooks as well as knitting needles. A lot of the thread was bought by her years ago, mainly in Singapore and Malaysia (where the prices are lower!) but some of the threads were given to her by friends whom she'd told about my new hobby.

Among these threads was this beautiful lot:

Smooth and shiny, and not the easiest to crochet with because it falls of the hook easily and catches and frays too. Think of backcombed hair - it can go irreversibly messy like that even when exercising care.

My latest find was a crochet bouquet (made up of different types of flowers and leaves, but lying flat, not with stems) on the website which I'd recommend for any crafter out there. It contains excellent guides, ideas and patterns for motifs and crochet stitches.

Finally, I had found the perfect use for the above threads - roses! The rose pattern on (I'm not on commission from them) is definitely one of the prettiest and quickest I've found over years of online browsing. I'm addicted, I have crocheted about 20 in the last week (I don't confess to being the fastest crafter out there!), and I'm hoping to learn how to crochet other flowers too and how to make/attach stems so they can be used as decoration for the home.

On getting to the end of one of the spools I wondered who these manufacturers were and if they still existed (unlikely, I know) because I wanted to know what material this thread was and also if it was possible to buy more!

A quick google search unfortunately didn't bring up much. This address in London is now a block of flats, and I couldn't find anything when I typed in Maygrove threads / yarns. I did, however, find an excerpt from a book about the British silk industry of yesteryear 'The silk industry of the United Kingdom. Its origin and development By Frank Warner' (not on commission from his publisher either!) which told me that St Albans' successful 19th century silk manufacturers Charles Woollam & Family had their company absorbed by J Maygrove.

On another website, I found a guide to silk and the different thicknesses it is available in. I am fairly sure that the thread I have been using (pictured above) is silk in one of its thickest counts - 60 (1200 denier) or 72 thread (1440 denier). I have ordered some thread (but that of a lower thread count as I want to see if the thread is worth the price) to test the appearance and quality.

If I find that this website sells high quality thread and offers good customer service I'll contact them to see if they can give me a definite answer on whether the thread I've been using for the roses is silk or not, and if they can tell me about a possible date of manufacture. If you who is reading this knows anything more or knows someone who might, let me know! Drop me a comment below of email

Thank you for your valuable time and a big hello to friends and family who may be here as a result of my earlier text message :-) my posts aren't usually this long but I hope you at least enjoyed the pictures!

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