Burn Baby Burn!

Posted May 5, 2019

On Sunday afternoon, May 5th, EWG members benefited from the knowledge of Kathy Buse on how to identify unknown fibres. In the 4th Master Wannabees session, Burn, Baby, Burn! Kathy provided a lecture, handouts and materials and guided participants on the burn test.

Kathy described the process to identify mystery fibres. What is the appearance of the fibre? Is it shiny, matte, thick, thin, hairy? How does it feel? Is it soft, slippery, coarse, wiry, smooth, elastic? What is the fibre length? For example, synthetics are long, What is is strength? Does it break easily? Does it smell? Some wool has a spinning oil odour.

She provided samples of different fibres and detailed instructions on how to conduct the burn test. She stressed that smoke may be toxic, particularly for toxic fibres, so be aware of the ventilation and try not to inhale the smoke but pay attention to the colour of the smoke and the shape of the residue which will provide clues to the fibre’s identity. With Kathy’s help, participants then had a hands-on opportunity to test the mystery fibres they brought with them.

A useful Sunday afternoon. Thank you Kathy!


In 2019 Kathy Buse presenting a workshop on how identify unknown fibres