Hamanaka Twinkle

The following free tutorials on my site use this fibre:

I’m not really a sparkly girl, you get me. My own brand of femininity eschews glitter and bling and sparkles in favour of floral hair clips, comfortable shoes and a general lack of co-ordination (both fashion and physical). This wasn’t always the case, but a brief dalliance with glitter hairspray in the mid 90s that led to perma-glittered pillow cases until I left home was more than enough to put me off anything shiny for life.

Sometimes at night I can still hear my dad cursing as yet another of his work shirts came out of the washing machine looking 10% more fabulous than it did when it went in.

Can you guess I got this before Christmas?

Taking photos of this fibre has to be one of the most frustrating things I’ve had to do so far (and I have a seven year old who’s scared of buttons), as there seems to be no way I can replicate the actual sheen of the fibres on camera.

This, but even more

So, the fibre itself.

Now, most glitter fibres that I’ve seen so far seem to have been made by blending angelina fibres into carded batts made from more traditional fibres. The ratio will vary by creator, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen a batt with more than 5-10% sparkle. Due to the plasticky nature of angelina fibres this seems practical – you probably wouldn’t be able to felt it without a large buffer zone of animal fibre to bind it too.

Hamanaka Twinkle though, is different. As far as I can tell, all of the fibres have a pearlescent sheen, which gives it the very very rare quality of being a genuinely shiny fibre, as opposed to being normal wool tops with streaks of shiny fibre raspberry-rippling its way through it.

To me this looks every bit like a fibre where each strand has a sheen.

The sheen picks up better against the darker colours. Quite honestly, it’s bewitching!

Then there’s this glorious pink…

Yes, this image is smaller than the rest. No, I don’t have the energy to change it.

Now, as an effect fibre this is not the sort of thing you would use to create a core wool shape – it might work ok but it would probably struggle. However, it wraps around existing cores really well. For example, I made a core shape out of black wool and covered it with the gorgeous red Twinkle…

The thought occurs that this could make a very pretty poppy

And it covered it absolutely beautifully – very easy to felt down and with no sign of the original core poking through the red which, in all honesty, is what I expected to see. The surface area was fuzzier than if I was using, say NZ Carded, but not so fuzzy to cause a problem.

So, time to put this twinkly mutha through its paces!

This was a tomte I started making over Christmas 2018 that I never really finished – partly because I was swamped with other orders and partly because… well – it’s a bit uninspired. I like my Tomtes to have a bit of… you know, and a little bit more… you get me?

I like to use this as a gentle overlay effect when pairing the Twinkle Fibre with a contrasting colour – the sheen still picks up beautifully, However, this fibre does have a tendency to clump together, so you have to be careful when spreading them out.

In summary

This is a gorgeous effect fibre to use, and quite unique in the way the sheen is applied all the way through. The colours are gorgeous and the fibre itself is very easy to use, although it’s on the same level as alpaca when it comes to neatness, with a tendency to be a bit fuzzy. It feels soft to touch – very silky – and is definitely worth using. It does, however, leave a bit of a mess on your felting mat, so its worth having a dedicated mat just for when you use this fibre.