ENTER THE THROWSTER!
Raw silk arrives in this country in bales, each containing hanks of silk which go to the silk Throwster who makes the raw silk into usable threads. This process is known as “throwing”.
The single thread of raw silk is wound on spools prior to being twisted. This forms the basis of silk hosiery yarns. Two or more of these separate threads are twisted together by the Throwster into strong, pliable yarn, and the method of twisting is appropriate for the style of stocking required by the Hosiery Manufacturer; that is what is meant when reference is made to two, three, or four-thread stockings and their construction and style in both seamless and fully-fashioned.
In the hosiery industry, the twist of silk per inch is important, and manufacturers measure twist, not only by the number of twists per inch, but by the method by which the threads are twisted together. These styles may be roughly divided into the following categories:-
1. Tram Silk. Two or more threads doubled together and given a slight twist, usually about five turns to the inch. (Until a few years ago, most silk stockings were knitted from Tram Silk, producing hose which not only had a “fuzzy” appearance, but also snagged easily. Duller hosiery—having a matt appearance—was demanded by the public, and manufacturers, with the help of the Throwsters, experimented with twists much higher than that used on “Tram twist”, and this resulted in today’s various constructional types, which follow.)
2. High-Twist Silk. If a strand of Tram silk be twisted, the whole strand tightens up and becomes harder and thinner. This is the beginning of “High Twist”, and is then the same construction as Tram, but with a greater number of turns per inch, varying from ten to twenty turns. This extra twist, up to a certain limit, strengthens the thread and gives a better “feel” and wearing quality. High-Twist softens down the lustre of the silk and promotes a dull finish.
3. Organzine Silk. Each separate raw thread is twisted in one direction about fourteen to sixteen turns per inch. These ends are doubled together, two or more threads, and are given about twelve turns in the reverse direction. This two-way twisting