Tag Archives: yarn

Hand Dyed Acrylic Yarns

I started dyeing my yarns as a hobby when we were living in Lagos. It may sounds impossible but actually it wasn’t that difficult getting the supplies into Africa from outside especially from the UK. It’s quite strange that when I now live in my own country getting items shipped into my place from the usual online shop I purchased my materials is no longer possible. We are a rich country, we have fast land and ocean and that ocean has lots and lots of fishes, the land has lots of plants which can be bartered with those dyes and the plants we have, that can turn to dyes… Don’t worry, I was just complaining to myself.

The difficulties in getting my dyed especially for the hardest material to dye like acrylic had forced me into an exciting exploration. have been using anything to get yarn samples dyed even if the manufacturer said it won’t work, I tried it anyway.

Among the brands sold in the market here, these are the names which are common at my place, Wantex and Dylon. There is only one type of Dylon available here which is the multi purpose powdered dye (is there any other type?). Anyway, so I tried both, it did paint the yarns but they both runs. Even with the fixer. The acrylic yarns just won’t marry to the dye…

I was frustrated although decided not to give up hope. I kept on working and mixing  the paste… add more water, reduce water, apply heat, use microwave, use steamer, sun dyed… soften the hue, apply heat again and wash the skein in the sink only to see all the deep color being striped off revealing the naked color of the threads… (sighed and wiped sweat on my forehead).

I have some left over Jacquard iDye Poly from Dharma Trading (the only one which is working so far), I tried also an imported Japanese brand which was  intentionally made for acrylic painting on canvas but the label did mention garments in it so I guess that is safe to use. It was funny when I told the guy who sold it what I was going to use it for, he laughed at me with a worry kind of laugh, you know, he was afraid that I was just going to waste my time and money. Well then, is that mean I can’t dye acrylic yarns forever since there is no way I can import Jacquard into here? I can’t take no for an answer to that (the grumpy child in me talking).

I think I will have to live with what I can get locally for now, not too much colors  to play with but it will be good enough till I can get to buy Jacquard iDye Poly again… #feeling-hopeful



I small sample I dyed earlier. I like how this color turns out. I would call it Baby Cashmillon. See the knitting sample below.


Above yarns after washing with liquid soap and sun dried. You see how much color had faded in the washing? It’s still a nice blend however and I am happy with the result.

Knitting sample of the Baby Cashmillon above.

Dyed with iDye for natural fiber, it was very deep purple and dark green before. The above is the result after washing and dried and if I wash it again it may runs again. I know it was silly me not to trust the label.


Yes, no more color runs… The water is clear.

Dyed with iDyePoly and hank to dry. Rewarding myself with a cup of tea while waiting  while reading the book titled “Hand Dyieng…” LOL

I have a patience friend who waited if he will be allowed to touch the ball…

I learned dying technique from book, Youtube and I did my own research and experiments. I have been reading a book by Gail Callahan “Hand Dyeing Yarn and Fleece” and subscribed to several hand dying channels on Youtube. My favorite channel is Nicole of Hue Loco. I also follow her Instagram. She has done so much wonderful works.

Note on iDye Poly, must wash garment dyed with this separately.

Rectly dyed (uploaded on May 1st, 2016


Tangle Free Yarn

How many times have you wound the yarns and ended up spending countless hours untangling it? Well if you are like me who wind your yarns a lot before  crocheting or knitting, here are some tips for you. This technique is especially useful when you work with a slippery yarns such as nylon or a certain type of silk.  I would call this method making yarn donut casing. With this method you are encasing each ball and pull one end while the ball stay inside the case. It will make your yarn ball hair and dust free too.

You need a plastic pocket in the size to fit the volume of your yarn ball, not too loose and not to tight. Umbrella yarn winder and a ball winder is needed but it is not a  must. If you are manually winding your yarns, just make sure to put something hollow to temporarily hold your yarns such as a bathroom tissue paper holder.

First method: Cut the base of the plastic pocket, slide it into the ball winder then tighten it with a rubber band. Wind yarns as usual. When finish, remove yarns from the winder then pull out one end of the plastic pocket gently and fold it around the yarn enveloping it inside safely.

Second method: Wind yarns as usual. When finish, remove yarns from the winder, slide in the precut plastic pocket through the hole then pull out one end gently. Fold the plastic around the yarn enveloping it inside safely.

Green Method: I have not tried  this but maybe a a crumpled old magazine paper might work as well as a wrapper.

Don’t forget to reuse and recycle the plastic containers.


Custom Made Crochet Frame Purse

As soon as this yarns came I thought I must immediately make something with it or otherwise I will be buried in other WIPs which never seems to finish again for a long time and the idea soon will evaporate and I will forget about it. I know, I am making excuse again for not finishing my works on time (sigh)… But I promise myself  making this purse doesn’t take much of my time .

To do this you need:

  1. 1 ball of  yarn, 100 gr/DK size, a crochet hook (I used smaller hook because I crochet very loose). 4 mm hook is the usual one for this type of yarns.
  2. A metal frame, mine is an oval 10 cm in diameter.
  3. A sewing needle.
  4. A thin nylon thread to sew the purse to the frame which can be purchased from a bead store. Something like a nymo will work.
  5. A piece of fabric for the lining (optional) depends on the type of stitching you will choose. If you are going to do single crochet motif only all the way you may not need  to line your purse.
  6. A sharp scissor.

The Math Thingy

  1. Measure the circle of your frame. With the frame wide open and using a measuring tape, measure the inside circle. Let say the inner circle is 30 cm. Let’s divide this number with 2 so 30:2 = 15 cm. this is the width of the bottom of your purse.

Using the stitch pattern of your choice (mine is inspired by Wheat Stitch Baby Blanket on Ravelry) and it is a free pattern (thanks to DankFiber), make a purse taking into account the width of the base  as measured above. You can make it as tall as you like but at least the height must be the same length as the base to give enough room for the pocket when the frame is sewn later.


The finish pocket and the frame.


Cut and hand sew the lining. Pinch the two corners and sew.


Flip the purse inside out and slide into the lining.


Pin and baste the lining to the purse.


Arrange the opening around the frame, tuck in the fabric and lining and spread evenly.


IMG_4477 (1)

Sew the purse into the frame starting from the corner, from outside into the inside, insert needle just about 1 mm below the edge  into both fabric and lining and sew back into the same hole in the frame. Pull tight each time so the stitches are hidden inside the slot in the frame. 

Sew several times into the fabric, cut off  thread and burn the nylon careful not to burn your hand or the purse. Just be save with all you do.

You are done!




NOTE: You can make the bottom of your purse as wide as you like but the opening has to match the size of the frame unless your fabric is thin enough to fold inside the opening when the frame is shut, then it doesn’t matter.




Lotus Crochet Flower Photo Tutorial

Salam ‘alaikum, peace be upon you… How are you all?  It is now finally the rainy seasons here back home in Indonesia after nearly a year of hot seasons.  Thank God for the rain and the cooler weather.

Alhamdulilalah. Rain brings so many good thing in life. One of them is the lotus in our small pot in our yard are blooming. When the first time I saw the bulbs I had no clue what will be the colors which has been planted before we arrive in the house. It was just one of the most beautiful flowers have ever seen…

Lotus flower blooms only for a few days so I had to capture the images as soon as possible before it disappears. Below I have tried to create a crochet brooch from the image, it is far from the original look but I am happy with my new brooch…  Photo tutorial below if you wish to make one too.

Yarns: Small amount of Cashmillon Soft Acrylic Sport size in 5 soft colors. Total weight of the finish brooch is 38 grams only.
Hook: 2.5 mm
Yarn needle
Glue gun and a glue stick (optional)
A piece of craft wire


CH = chain (rantai)
SC = single crochet (tusuk tunggal)
DC: double crochet (tusuk ganda)
SCBL = single crochet backloop (tusuk tunggal dari belakang)
TR = Treble Crochet (yo twice, insert hook into the next st, yo, pull 2, yo, pull 2, yo, pull last 2 loops) (tusuk tr)
BPSC = front post single crochet (insert hook into the space between two sc from the back of the st, yo, pull 2 loops). (tusuk tunggal pada sela rajutan dari belakang)

Ch 3

R1: 6 sc into the first ch, join with a sl st to form a ring, ch 1. (6 sc)

R2: 2 sc into each st around. Join with a sl st, ch 1. (12 sc)

(Sc into next st, tr into next st); rep around, join with a sl st to first the ch-1. 
(2 sc, sc) around, join with a sl st, cut off green. Flip your work upside down. (18 sc)

R3: Attached yellow into the last round, (bpsc into next st, ch 10. Sl st into the 2nd ch from hook, 8 sc along the ch); rep around, join with a sl st to the first bpsc.

Cut off yarn… (18 inner petals)

R4: Make a slip knot, *blsc into each of next 3 st, turn, (sc into next 3 st, turn); rep till 9 rows of 3 sc. 

Sc3tog, ch 1, turn your work sideways, sc into next st and all the 8 remaining st along the petal**.  Rep from * to ** around, join with a sl st to the first blsc. (6 petals)

Sc along the edges of all the 6 petals, join with a sl st to the first sc. (6 petals)

NOTE: I made mistake on the number of sc in mine so I had 7 instead of 6. Do not repeat my mistake. I was too lazy to frog my works LOL.

R5: Pick up light pink. Bpsc into the center back of the previous petal…

 (ch 3, bpsc into the back center of next petal); rep around.  (6 ch-3 sp)

*4 sc into next ch-03 sp, turn, (sc into each of next 4 st, turn); rep till 9 rows of 4 sc. 

Sc4tog, ch 1, turn your work sideways, sc into next st and all the 8 remaining st along the petal**.  Rep from * to ** around, join with a sl st to the first sc. (6 petals)
NOTE: mine is 7 because of the previous mistakes I made.
Cut off yarns…

R6: Repeat R5 for the last layer of petal using the darker pink.

Here is how mine look like when completed and all ends had been sewn in.  
The backing for the brooch
Alternatively you can use a piece of felted fabric, sew the pin and glue the fabric onto the back of the flower. Below are the instructions for a crocheted backing.
R1: Using green, ch 3, 6 sc into the first ch, join with a sl st, ch 1. (6 sc)

 R2: Pick up a craft wire, hide the wire while crocheting  by holding it close to the edge of the working st.
2 sc into each of the next st around. (12 sc)
R3: ch 2, dc into same ch2 sp, dc into next st, (2 dc into next st, dc into next st); rep around, turn.(18 dc)  
 R4: (2 sc into next st, sc into each of next 2 st); rep around, turn. (24 sc), turn.
R5 to R 8: Continue in this manner by adding 6 st in every round to create a flat surface, turn the work at the end of a row/round. 

Last round: sc around, join with a sl st to the first sc. Prepare a safety pin. Slide in the pin carefully in between the double crochet sts. Sew the pin to the fabric to secure.
Turn your work. Using a small amount of toy filling or left over yarns, fill up the space at the back of the flower for a fuller body.

Sew or glue the backing with the glue stick to the back of the flower to finish.


Imagine the possibilities
I was thinking of a big flower backpack…
Enjoy your creativity.

NOTE: All of my photographs have hidden copyright info on its meta data. Please do not reupload my files by any means to another blog or website. You can share the link instead. You can make items with my patterns for yourself or as gifts. Please contact me if you need the photos on my blog to be used in commercial publications.



Read more…

How Much Yarns do I need?

Useful Yarn Calculations

If the yarns came without label do the following technique to measure the length of the yarn.

DIY yarn calculation

The following chart estimates how much yarn you will need for  the specific projects using the yarns produced in Indoensia. For other brands check the yarn company’s label.

Indonesia use metric system so don’t forget the conversion 1 Yard = 0.91 m
Yarn Brand
Crochet Yardage
Baby 20″ x 30″
Adult 60″ x 60″
Katun Bali Halus
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Child 18″
Adult 20″-22″
Katun Bali Halus
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Child 6″ x 40″
Adult 8″ x 54″
Katun Bali Halus
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
Child (chest size) 24″ – 28″ – 32″
Adult (chest size) 36″ – 40″ – 44″ – 48″
675 – 1300 – 1885
2340 – 2730 – 3250 – 3510
Katun Bali Halus
715 – 1040 – 1430
1820 – 2080 – 2470 – 2730
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
650 – 845 – 1300
1560 – 1820 – 2080 – 2340
360 – 650 – 910
1170 – 1300 – 1560 – 1690
Child (chest size) 24″ – 28″ – 32″
Adult (chest size) 36″ – 40″ – 44″ – 48″
520 – 715 – 975
1235 – 1465 – 1642 – 1885
Katun Bali Halus
390 – 520 – 780
910 – 1175 – 1235 – 1430
Light Worsted
Katun Besar Soft
Katun Bali Big Ply
325 – 455 – 650
780 – 975 – 1105 – 1235
228 – 325 – 520
585 – 715 – 845 – 910

Calculation example for crochet blanket using Katun Bali Halus 10 ply
Baby blanket  = 1500 yard = 1365 m : 143 m = 9.5 ball
Using Cashmillon DK size
Baby blanket = 1500 yards = 1365 m: 225 m = 6 balls.

 Always buy one ball extra for any project you make incase you are running out of yarns because all yarn balls came in approximate length.
© Image Copyright
Irtati Wibisono 2013
Other Source:  Lion Brand  

All of my photographs have hidden copyright info on its meta data. Please do not reupload my files by any means to another blog or website. You can share the link. You can make items with my patterns for yourself or as gifts. Please contact me if you need the photos on my blog to be used in commercial publications.

Lacy Granny

Wednesday is always a special day for us in Lagos Crochet Group (LGC) and this week is extra special because we are all struggling and racing against ourselves to master a new pattern.
No one get up of the floor, and those who came late will have to wait a while at the door because all seems reluctant to go to the door to open it lol.  Anyone wishing to go to the bathroom has to do it before the class begun because class cannot be distracted hahaha.  A new kindergarten school is born with one lessen on the list, crochet.Our special teacher for the day is Agung Sukawati who designed  this top and jacket. Aren’t these adorable? Agung is letting me drawing the chart for her design and allowed me to share it with you.  Find the chart at the bottom of the page. Not only that,  she also  shows us how to connect the lacy block together.  Now, it’s your turn to improvise with it.

Photo by Iin Wibisono 2015

Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015

Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015

Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015

Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015

Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015
Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015
Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015
Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015
Photo by Agung Sukawati 2015
Lacy Granny Chart

Souvenier from Jogja from Yarn shopping to Leather Crafts

  1. Visiting *Yogyakarta this year especially for me is quite meaningful and a bit different than my previous visits because I was more focus and prepared in how we would like to spend our time. 
  3. In short here is what our schedule looks like.
  4. Flight: We arrived Jogja by Lion Air from Jakarta at late evening around 10 pm, ate dinner at Lesehan Maliboro and returned to Jakarta 5 days later via Batik Air (still under same Lion group but better service).
  5. Hotel: and stayed at Hotel 1001 Malam (1001 Nights). Hotel rate was USD 40 per per night  breakfast included. B’fast is served at 07:30. You can choose from the menu ahead of time at night or let them know an hour in advance to prepare. There are banana pancake, nasi goreng and sandwich to choose from along with fruit juice, coffee and tea.
  6. Places we visited in pictures:
  2. Day 1: Gabby Yarnshop of course haha… Huge thanks to my family for allowing me to visit the shop on or first day. I met  Regent, the friendly owner and his wife and their new baby and purchased some yarns. Gabby sells yarns from cotton to nylon in lace to DK sizes and a limited amount of bulky and imported yarns.  Gabby address is Jalan Mangkubumi No.69, Tugu, Jogjakarta. Phone  0819-0428-3888 and (0274) 550696. After Gabby yarn shop we headed off to Kasongan pottery village.
Indecisive moment at Gabby Yarnshop.
They sells handmade and batik cap too. After Gabby yarn shop we headed off to Kasongan potteries.


 The motifs were made using eggshell glued to the surface.


  1. Day 2: Taman Sari. Taman means garden.  
  1. The above picture show the view from above where the Yogyakarta Kings used to see the dance performances below.
My friends and I at the room which used to be the dressing room for the mistress.
Dressing room seen from the King’s bedroom. Notice how the layers of doors forming  mirror like image like in a camera lens, focusing on the center focus point. It would be interesting to know the idea behind the creation of this rooms as well as the entire Taman Sari architectural building by a Portuguese architect Demang Tegis between 1755 – 1792 AD
Another entertainment and ceremonial area inside theTamas Sari complex.
Left: Bathing area for the mistresses  viewed from the top level of the building where the King would only select one to stay with him for the day. The King would throw a rose to the pond and whoever hit by the rose would stay and the rest would disappear. Right: Batik painter aroundTaman Sari.
The bathing place viewed from different angle.


Sumur gumuling used to be the place for ablution for the Muslims before the prayer time.  Today it is no more than the photo taking  place for tourists. The underground masjid was built in the natural sound system so the voice of the Imam can be heard clearly by the people who pray behind him including the woman who pray in separate chambers.
  1. Lunch on day 2 was at a Haji Slamet Fried Duck, a four stars rated restaurant by Trip Advisor.
Day 3: Kasongan Wood Craft in Bantul 2o minutes from Jogjakarta.
There are many woodcraft shops in Kasongan with type of works ranging from wood sculpture to furnitures. Below are some work  that caught my interest.
Teakwood stools priced from 40 – 50 USD each! I drool as I type this  because I live in Lagos, Nigeria at the moment following my husband’s assignment and I just wish to stay in a house which I can decorate with these beauty…
Another beautiful teak wood table being displayed in a shop at Kasongan village.
Next to the craft shop was a coffee shop overlooking a small river below. I can’t agree more on this poster says: Today (everyday) is the best day in my life, Alhamdulillah.
  1. Lunch was at Sundanese restaurant Bale Ayu. 4.5 stars for this restaurant for their menu variety and friendly service. See them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/BALEAYU followed by a trip to the Manding leather craft village.
Directions to shops at Manding leather craft village. See video about Manding village in this ink.


A crafter at Manding Village and some made to order bags ready to ship.


Friendly crafter and the cow leather  he had just finished cutting.


The traditional tool of the trade. On left is the stitch marker puncher. The crafter use this puncher to easily hand stitch the fabric later.


Detailed embossed work on leather.


Retail shops along the street selling local made leather crafts.


An old bike with leather saddle and leather bag on display in front of a retail shop.
Bags on display at Dowa boutique in Godean Km 7, Jogjakarta. Follow me for my other exciting post on Dowa Crochet and learn how this famous crochet boutique do the lining of their bags first hand. 
  1. Day 4: Gunung Kidul, Goa Pindul (Pindul Cave Tubing) followed by lunch at Yu Marto restaurant nearby. Aside from too much myths regarding the stalactite inside the cave, this 350 M long cave is beautiful. A lot more improvement  is needed to make it more enjoyable place to visit such as the quality of the changing rooms and the safety and smooth entrance into the cave. There is no stair to go down to the river and the naked wet clay is too slippery during wet season. There is no limit for the ages who can enter, so baby ages 15 months can join without safety vest while the tour guides remind us the depth of the cave in some part is 12 meters deep! Don’t forget to bring a waterproof casing for your camera and wallets as leaving your valuable items in the locker room is not advisable.
Pcture inside the Goa Pindul from Kompasiana
We stop for coffee and eating durian fruit at Bukit Bintang, Patuk.
Seen below is the city called  Piyungan.
Day 5: We concluded our visit by meeting my cousin and his family and  had lunch at Jejamuran Restaurant recommended by my dear friend Ukhti Ima Fajarianto.  See ukhti Ima on her blog here http://imalifejourney.blogspot.com
She was right about the restaurant.  I have never thought of serving mushroom in such a variety of cooking from stir fry,  green chili pesto, rendang (spicy curry) and tongseng (grilled mushroom with curry sauce). 
Tips: come an hour early before lunch time to secure your place. When we ate there on the way out we saw the sign “Parking is full” which also means the space is full and you will have to come back some other time.  Jejamuran is rated 4 stars by Trip Advisor. 
We had one hour of adrenalin pumping drive to the airport. The traffic was tight and we were loosing time. At that moment we forgot how tasty the food was. Not a good idea to go to the fancy restaurant on last minute. Arrived at the airport, had 20 minutes to check in and board the plane immediately and took a deep breath and thanks God for not missing our flight and didn’t have any trouble on the road… Alhamdulillah.
Selections of mushrooms on display at the Jejamuran restaurant, Jogjakarta.
See review in here http://www.tripadvisor.com/Restaurant_Review-g2304080-d1828715-Reviews-Jejamuran-Sleman_Yogyakarta_Java.html
Meeting my cousin and his family. Refinda back row 2nd from left and Dilla front row in pink scarf are two of crocheters in our family who have contributed to the making of the strawberry bags we have sold locally.


Isn’t she cute with her strawberry dress mum made?


Dilla (11) and her own designed crocheted top. Amazing talent at such young age. Yarns from Joann, USA.  On the backdrop is the scene from busy lunch time at Jejamuran (Mushrooms Restaurant).
Thanks to brother Arfiansyah Abu Khalid and his beautiful Wife Vika for their guidance and coaching during our 5 days stay. Our days were worth spending and no time wasted till the very last minute.  We especially enjoyed the companion of baby Khalid whose famous word is Caca…
  1. Note: *Yogyakarta is a city and the capital of Yogyakarta Special Region in Java, Indonesia. It is renowned as a center of education, classical Javanese fine art and culture such as batik, ballet, drama, music, poetry, and puppet shows. WikipediaArea12.66 sq miles (32.8 km²)ProvinceSpecial Region of YogyakartaPopulation388,627 (2010) UNdataLocal timeSaturday 8:39 PM
NOTE: All of my photographs have hidden copyright info on its meta data. Please do not re upload my files by any means to another blog or website but share the link instead.
You can make items with my patterns for yourself or as gifts. 

Water Wheel Crochet Motif

This is not my design. It was the motif of my pink table cloth which I bought in an exhibition a few years ago when I was not yet so much into crocheting. I have searched for the designer online  but I can’t find it. If you happen to know please write me a note so I can properly credit her/him. Thank you. One day I wish to make a mandala out of this using thick yarn such as the one made by

Make a magic ring by wrapping the yarn 10 times on your little finger. Insert hook into the the ring,  yarn over, pull through yarn and make 1 ch.
16 sc into ring, join with sl st.
Make 4 ch (counted as 1 dc and 1 ch).


(1 dc, 1 ch) 16 times.


Join with sl st.


Make 3 ch (counted as 1 dc).


3 dc in same st,  sc in next dc, (3 ch, 3 dc in same st, sc in next dc; rep around.


Join with sl st to first sl st.



2 ch, sc into the 3 ch sp…
(2 ch, sc into the 3 ch sp); rep around…
 Join with sl st.


4 ch (counted as 1 dc and 1 ch), (skip next st, 1 ch, dc in next st); rep around.


Join with sl st to 3rd of 4 ch.


Sc in next 1 ch sp.
[(3 ch, sc in same sp) 3 times, sc in next ch sp]; rep around. (3 picots, sc in next ch sp)



Here is how the finished motif looks like. Pardon the uneven color of my scrap yarn.
My pink table cloth with same motif. Ignore the mochi, but if you drool then maybe you will have to make some. Recipe here in this blog.

When Crocheters Received Their Yarns Parcels

After such long wait (haha a few days always felt like a few hundreds days when you are waiting for yarns to arrive) our Australian pure 18 micron Merino wool orders arrived. Yes, we are so blessed… Alhamdulillah. Just have a look at the smile in the faces of my crochet buddies in this slide show…

Here is West Africa life can be very exciting. Perhaps because of some limitations we are experiencing in some cases, something ordinary to some people in the other part of the world seems to always extra ordinary and extra happy in our place.  The skeins now all have been distributed to friends who ordered them. Many more skeins have been arranged neatly on the shelves ready for our next crochet meet up and class.

I suddenly feel the need for a cup of tea, sit quietly in my comfy corner (you will notice my big red pillow on the slide show) and crochet… while perhaps rub my cheek on some of those super soft yarns…

Hope you enjoy the slideshow…

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Yarn Container Idea

Have a great Sunday everyone. Isn’t it wonderful when hubby and your kid support you in what you do? My son handed to me an empty protein container for my yarn, and hubby help me drill the hole on the cover. Son gave me one of of his eartips to line the hole so it won’t scratch or shave my yarns when I pull it from the container. Have a blessed day everyone. InsyaAllah.