This is something I’ve wanted to do since I was about four years old, sitting on the floor of Dotty’s home and playing with her “Sleeping Beauty”-style spinning wheel.
I took a spinning class this weekend from my new friends at Syrendell. (Lucky for me they are local!) Jennifer Tan and her daughter, Joey, taught us how to use the drop spindle and let us try spinning on a wheel, too. The drop spindle is fairly simple in concept and it didn’t take too long to catch on. My first attempt is on the far right of the photo below. I started with a brown wool roving, then spun some white Merino wool with tencil, then tried a muted green/blue wool. It’s all on one skein. It’s lumpy and wonky and imperfect and I love it!
We got to create batts of prepared wool fiber on a drum carder, which felt surprisingly like painting with wool and created such a gorgeous, fluffy, ready-to-spin batt. I loved laying out the colors and wondering how they might combine in the spun yarn.
I bought a spindle for myself and took home the two batts of fiber I had prepared, one green and one rainbow. On Saturday afternoon, I spun the green into yarn and Lucas helped me. He was really curious and I think we can do this together. On Sunday, I spun the rainbow fiber and it was wonderful! It has lumps and places that are over- or underspun. Making perfectly even, consistent yarn is clearly not something one learns in a day!
Now I have something else to do with all that wool roving I’ve bought over the years for needle-felting.