Spinning my wheels

Things have been a bit quiet on the weaving side for me as in March I joined the Sheep Spotters Society with the goal of learning to spin ‘properly’, or rather properly learn to spin as to date I have been entirely self taught and a few people have mentioned that my style is somewhat eccentric (my words not theirs, I believe the term weird may have been used).

I taught myself spinning with the help of a book, a spindle, hand cards and a bag of mystery fleece and had been spinning two decades before I tried a mill prepared fibre. Once I had ‘drop’ spinning in hand Nick’s mum leant me her Ashford traveller and I started learning to spin on a wheel. After that wheel went back I bought a refurbished but old Traditional wheel from a friend and since then have got my own Traveller for $20 from the dump shop.

My intention has always been to spin fine yarn that could be woven into cloth, or used in tapestry weaving. So I worked towards spinning fine and eventually developed my standard yarn: fairly fine, generally under plyed. It worked and I have been able to use it in both woven cloth and scarves as well as in tablet weaving. But as my weaving has advanced I’ve realised that what I’m spinning isn’t necessarily what I want to weave with. So my goal has been to really diversify my experience so that I know enough and have done enough to design and create the yarn I want to use.

Anyway I am having a lot of fun and learning heaps. It’s definitely taking me out of my comfort zone and challenging me, in the nicest way, to make yarns that I would never that thought of trying. It’s more that just a spinning course, it’s an international spinning community which gives so much additional value, especially if you’re not already part of a local spinning group. The local spinning groups associated with Creative Fibre just don’t work for me as they meet during the work day so this online community is great, someone is always online.

My May spinning, three skeins from the colour exercises, plus more Romney, Alpaca blend.