Saturday, 7 June 2008

Have spindle will travel

My spinning wheel isn't very happy with me. I haven't used it for weeks, ever since I bought my new spindles. Truth is, they really fit in with the way that I live.

When I went off to visit my family a couple of weeks ago I knew I wanted to teach the kids drop spindling so I thought it would be lovely to take mine along to show them what can be done when you've had a bit of practice.

First I took a handful of roving...

Added the singles spindle and the plying spindle.

Remembered the mini niddy noddy I bought at Woolfest last year.

Added the first half of the Flutter scarf.

And popped it all into this lovely Ziploc bag (another souvenir from Maryland). Why can't you get decent ziploc bags here by the way?

It all worked out rather well, actually. Not only was I able to show the children what could be done with drop spindling but after they were in bed and the grownups gathered in the living room it was easy to sit and chat and spin or ply, just like when I am there with my knitting. I managed to ply enough yarn to make a skein with the niddy noddy, dunk it, dry it by hanging it in the handle of my bedroom window and knit it up on the way home.

Now I am back home and the weather is slowly improving it is so lovely to take the bag out into the garden and do an hour or so's spinning while listening to the blackbirds sing and watch the cabbages take over my garden.

I am now wondering whether I do need a portable wheel or whether a better house wheel is the way to go - or maybe I'm just happy with learning more about the beautiful simple tools that I already have and sharing what I've learned with others.

Sometimes I feel very lucky.


natalie said...

The best photon in the Twisted Sisters Sock Book isn't the projects or the roving, it's the one of smallish daysack with spindle, fibre, needles and knitting all with their own special place in the bag.
Ziplocks are fine, but I think you need a spindling bag, apart from anything else those lovely spindles need a bit of protection.
Is there a spindlers' bag I wonder?


Queen of the froggers said...

The spindelling looks great. Is the scarf knit in that spun yarn of N's? It looks nice.

Squiblet said...

Maybe you'll do more spinning indoors in the Autumn/Winter - it could be just because it's too tempting to be outside when the weather is nice and the evenings are lighter?

twellve said...

i had my parents bring over loads of ziploc bags this spring, as i haven't found any better ones here yet. there are a number of things from back home i like better than their UK counterparts (Puffs Plus, Scotch-Brite pads, etc.) and vice-versa (milk chocolate, chewing gum in pellets instead of sticks, etc.). shame you can't find them all in one place. so much for globalization! :)

Mandella said...

I've found that while I can sit and knit for hours, I spin the odd 10 minutes here and there. Of course, I have a portable wheel and it gets transported around the house a fair bit and to Guild meetings, but it's still a heavy bit of kit. What draws me to the wheel is that I get a better, more consistent result. Horses for courses I guess.

K. said...

What a lovely post! Sometimes the simpler things are what's called for. I'm sure you won't neglect you spinning wheel forever, though. I should get some roving to use with my spindle.

Mrs J said...


Anni said...

gorgeous spinning and knitting. Love the colours of the scarf. I did some drop spindle spinning the otherweek while teaching someone at a knitting group to spin on one. Haven't touched mine since I got my wheel but I agree they're very useful. Still prefermy wheel.