Sunday, February 7, 2010

Spinning Their Wheels

Over the weekend, Cecilia Jaffe from the local spinning guild taught a 2 day workshop at the store on her craft.

The parts of the wheel were discussed

As was proper care. A "thirsty" wheel will squeak and split, so everyone got down to oil their wheels.

Since feeding the fiber while treadling is akin to rubbing Your stomach while patting Your head, treadling was practiced first.

Then the fiber was "attenuated" to make the spinning easier, and to produce a more even yarn.

The attenuated fluff was loosely twirled into "bird's nests"

Once the wheels' needs had been taken care of and the desires of the fiber listened to, the spinning began. Cecilia demonstrated first, to make it look easy

Then everyone else tried.

It was swiftly found to produce an intense desire for alcoholic beverages - cookies and books on spinning were an inadequate substitute.

Day 2 began with plying the yarn, then putting it in to soak.

Wet sheep smells almost as bad as wet dog,

And tends to get handled gingerly.

Coats were donned and everyone tromped outside. Cecilia demonstrated

Then everyone else gave it a go. (Yes, she is slapping a wet hank of yarn against a down-spout) This is an important step because, besides removing excess moisture, it also evens out the twist.

Cindy contemplated her attack

But Fawn dove in energetically.

The completed yarn was hung to dry while the class reviewed the more troublesome topics.

At times it was frustrating, and while these students may be producing "art yarn" for awhile, they've already boldly taken the first step toward becoming Spinners.

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