Silk worm to silk thread

The silk worm is picked when it is about two centimeters long, firm and a rich yellow color. In Phnom Srok, the cooperative which grows the cocoons sells them to the spinners and weavers. These women boil the cocoons and after a few minutes pick up the thread and start to spin it off the cocoons onto a spindle.

The silk is in a large tray divided into little pockets. The original way of cultivating the cocoons was by hanging the worms onto the dried branches of mulberry trees. The women boil the cocoons. After boiling and removing the thread, the cooked worms are usually eaten. An important protein supplement. The thread is spun onto spindles. Before weaving the thread needs to be spun many times. The number of times determines how fine the thread is and in turn this affects how soft the cloth is. The thread is like blond hair. When it is left in the sun light it bleaches. This thread is the very coarse texture that produces a very beautiful textured raw silk.

To Home Page

Last updated on March 4, 1996.
© 1996 Katharine Wardle