Tuesday, April 1, 2014

beginning spinning

I've been spinning a few minutes each day, just practicing and teaching my hands how to move. In truth, I still don't really know what I'm doing, but I'm learning. I finally got over my fear of ineptness and wasting good fiber. Learning isn't a waste--it's an investment--and even if the yarn I make isn't usable, it will be a step toward creating yarn that is.

I'm spinning with Bluefaced Leicester wool that I picked out at The Woolery as part of my birthday yarn and fiber adventure. The BFL smells wonderfully sheepy and feels great in my hands. So far I've been using the park and draft method, where I give the spindle a hearty spin and then hold it still while I release the twist into the fiber. Even at my slow beginner's pace, I am enthralled with that moment the twist takes hold of the fiber and changes it from fluff to yarn. It brings a bit of magic to my days.

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Do any of you have spinning resources (particularly drop spindling) that you'd recommend? Or tips for a new spinner?

Respect the Spindle has proven useful so far, but I'm interested in learning more!


  1. It's fun to see that you are doing this. Our librarian spins and I went to a demonstration a couple of weeks ago. It looked like fun.

  2. Good for you. I want to take a private lesson. I have my spindle and draft somewhere. Did you look in Youtube?

  3. Congratulations on beginning your curious and beguiling journey into hand spindling. Enralled is a perfect word to is like being held in thrall, under a spell, watching an almost magical process take place. Sounds like you are looking in all the right places, maybe check out some Abbey Franquemont (spelling?) is such a visual kind of thing. I share your thrill.

  4. Congratulations on jumping into the world of spinning. I wish you the best of luck with it all. (And echo YouTube---visual learning is what always works best for me.)

  5. I picked up a drop spindle a handful of years ago, tried it a few times, and haven't touched it since. The roving is still on it, waiting for me to pick up where I left off. I look forward to watching your skill improve as I don't think I'll be picking mine up this summer (not with a newborn this year). Your yarn looks great, btw!

  6. Ooh how exciting to "meet" a fellow novice spindle spinster! Looks like you're doing really well so far, and I agree that a few minutes each day is the best way to proceed (if only to prevent sore wrists!).

    I too started with the excellent Respect the Spindle and have recently availed to "Your Handspinning" by Elsie G Davenport. It was originally published in the 1950s and is considered a classic by many - I've already learned heaps from her wonderful technical drawings and her prose is just magical. Shall look forward to reading more of your spinning adventures!


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