Friday, November 23, 2007

Allergic Reactions and Rope Washing Question
Hi Monk - Enjoy your website and the youtube videos - my boyfriend has literally thanked me a dozen times for showing those to was totally selfish on my part, so I just smile. To the question at hand, I have very sensitive skin (chronic hives) - so I like my robe to be of a softer quality but I want some color. And Christmas is coming up! Do you have a recommendation from your website of what is the best rope for me? Something soft but colorful. Judy
Skin sensitivity is one of the major reasons why I have spent countless hours refining our process and moving away from older, less hypo-allergenic methods of rope finishing. Today I only use allergen free, animal free oils (a common skin irritant for many sensitive customers) as well as a dye process using some of the highest quality dyes available, not that cheap RIT crap the bleeds and comes off on your skin. Even with all this, everyone’s skin is different. My recommendation would be to purchase on of our sample kits, it contains a 6’ length of each of our colors offered. Test it against your skin and see what your results are.

Rope gets softer with age, through play the rope softens and absorbs body oils. The weave relaxes and the fibers become more and more soft. A well loved piece of rope will resemble your favorite wooly sweater in no time. Repeated manual washing can also accelerate this process. It is important to note that while this will soften the rope, it will also reduce the overall tensile strength. Our process is intended to get the rope soft enough that it feels great against skin but not so soft that the fiber strength becomes dangerously degraded. For most bondage uses repeated washings are just fine and your rope will last you for years, however if you intend to use your rope for load bearing play like suspension bondage then you will need to be extra careful and using this rope. (it goes with out saying, but I’ll say it anyways. Suspension bondage is dangerous. Seek proper training before attempting and always inspect your rope and hardware before use. When in doubt, replace it.)

To wash your rope, knot your dirty rope as shown in my “rope handling” video.

Stuff the rope into an old pillow case and tie off bag. Don’t mix your rope colors when washing as there may still be trace amounts of dye that might bleed. ( While we thoroughly wash our ropes after dying, this is still a hand dyed and washed product so it is best to err on the side of caution just in case and save yourself any potential problems.)

Wash the ropes on the shortest, gentlest cycle possible using cold water. If you have a color safe bleach that works best for your allergies, use a very small amount.

When done, don’t try and unknot the wet rope. Wet hemp is next to impossible to untie. Rather, let hang for a day or two.

When the outside of the rope feels dry, unknot and let dry for a few more days.


If there are none available or you are unable to find any that do not irritate your skin, use the rope on skin or run the rope thought your hands while watching TV. This will also transfer your body oils to the rope.

Labels: ,