Monday, February 14, 2011

Spinning a yarn!!

WOW!!! What a feeling! As of yesterday, I have officially been spinning wool fleece into yarn.  It may not be the the prettiest right now but it sure is nice to see it winding up on the bobbin. 
I started taking lessons after two years waiting, last week at the Philadelphia Handweavers Guild in Manayunk, PA.  Every Saturday from 1:30-4:30.  After the first class last week, I really thought I'd been in Spinning 101 for the next 10 years.  It seemed hopeless.  Each time I began to treadle, it seemed like my foot had bionic speed and my poor hands were impossible to keep up. 
There I was, attempting to keep my "drafting triangle" steady, treadle slowly....ahhhh I threw my hands up more than once.  It was like patting my head and rubbing my tummy at the same just doesn't work.

But then our instructor Deb, patience and humor of a Saint just kept encouraging me. 
The second class was getting started and I sat before my wheel and was resolved to continue spinning commercial yarn onto the bobbin (a bobbin which I was certain cried out for real warm wool wrapped around it).  Suddenly I felt a little push and I offered up a silly little prayer. 

And this is what magically happened!!!

OK like I said, not the prettiest but it felt so good to finally "get it".  Then I came home and amid all the usual hustle and bustle of family life I tried again and this is what I have so far.

When I ran out of the Coopworth roving that I got at class, I tried the next batch of Shetland.  I have to say its not as easy to draft and spin as the first was.  Maybe its me (always a possibility) but I just think its a little rougher.  I need another bobbin and I might give plying a try!!! Did I really say that?? Wow, life is good!

So there you have it.  The joys of a newbie handspinner! I can't begin to express how silly and giddy I felt when I first realized that I was actually spinning this raw wool into something that could soon be used to knit with.  I see a future filled with warm woolly socks for my kiddies! Heck I think the pooch might need a pair!

And now it is Saint Valentine's Day and I have a house filled with little sick ones and one sick Nana that I have to tend to.  Spinning will have to wait until they are all tucked in for the night.  If I don't fall asleep at the "wheel" first! LOL that was spinning humor in case you missed it :-) !

Happy Saint Valentine's Day to you! Share your love not only with that special someone but with all those, near and far who bring love into your life every day! And that means your sheepie too!

God Bless you always.



  1. Wow! You are doing it! Looks great to me. I remember how I got so frustrated and then one day, I was spinning...many hours of spinning. I saved all of my first spinning yarn and used it in a for the life of me, I can't get that look again and I really want my yarn to have that look.
    You are doing a good job with the shetland.
    Hope all the sick get better soon.
    When do you start lambing?

  2. Sandy, congratulations! You are spinning! It sure looks great to me! Keep going, you will get where you want to be. You'll be a pro in no time and will have socks coming our your ears!
    Cute joke, by the way!

  3. Thanks for the boost ladies. I really am having fun. Socks socks socks! Can't wait.
    We start lambing around April 22nd. Working on making the lambing jugs and cleaning out the barn. This is our very first time lambing, our lists seem endless. I am very nervous!!

  4. Your spinning looks great!!! My first class the yarn I made was SOOOO inconsistant! But I but it in a weaving and really like how it looked. After the spinning class I did not have a wheel, but I did have a spindle and worked with that. When I finally got my wheel it went so much easier than that first class. Congratulations!!!

  5. Hello Sandy I enjoyed visiting your Farm Blog, so I thought I'd say hello, and I think i should fallow you too ;-)
    Blessings, Linnie

    PS(I'm from NY too)! (western)
    Do you attendend the Hemlock Fiber Fest?

  6. Clap, Clap, Cheer!!
    Gotta love the “bionic feet”.
    You are truly doing great with your spinning…progressing more than you (sometimes) realize. Your first yarn is lovely.

    Remember each step that seems like a stumble is an opportunity for increased awareness and teaches you something. This then turns from a stumble to a giant step forward in your spinning skills.

    Thanks for the idea! The head pat/tummy rub may just be included as a warm up exercise for the next Spinning 1 class. :-)

  7. I've just roamed through your blog, and it's wonderful to see how much you are learning and doing all the time. Such a beautiful farm and sheep, too.

    Good luck with your spinning--it looks wonderful to me!