Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Too Many Wheels.

That's it. I now officially have Too Many Wheels. Also, I want to buy a set of wool combs and they're far too expensive for my current equipment budget so I've decided to sell a couple of wheels to raise the money for combs.

First wheel up for sale is my Frank Herring Saxony wheel. Complete wih six bobbins, original orifice hook, on-board Lazy Kate and instructions for both use and assembly. Can be used wit either Scotch Tension or double drive.

And the completely refurbished Ashford Mk1 Traveller that I spoke about recently. (This is the "before" picture, I hasten to add. It's a lot cleaner now.) Three bobbins and an on-board Lazy Kate. Scotch Tension.

I'm currently in the process of taking pictures and writing up a description of each before I put them on Ebay next week. Might put them on Ravelry too. I just wanted to give you, my faithful readers, the chance to express any interest in either wheel first.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Scrap Swap.

I took part in a fun little swap over on the UK Spinners Forum on Ravelry.

Basically 20 or so of us sent in 100g or 200g of painted wool tops to a central coordinator, she stripped them down into 10g or so sections and then you were sent the same weight of fibre back of mixed short sections.

There were some fantastic colour combinations in the scraps.

Half the fun of this sort of swap is to see what other people do with their scraps. Some folk have opted to separate out colour families or divide the scraps into cool and hot colours, then spin the resultant piles. Some folk have drum carded their scraps into amazing multicoloured batts. And the spinning techniques have varied too. Singles, thick or thin or both, two ply, three ply, Navaho, coiled yarns...endless combinations.

I opted to spin what someone else called a "pudding yarn". I tore the scraps down even further into finger length sections, drafted them out a bit then spun them in a totally random sequence.

This was spun on my old Louet S10. Every time I get out my Old Man Louet I think that if I was made to have only one wheel he would be it. First wheel and still favourite, lol.

When plied this should end up about aran weight so I was thinking of making another Liesl with it to wear to spinning demos. But of course there's only a couple of hundred grams here and I'll need 700 yards or so, or 400g+ of fibre. So, yup. I'll have to do the next Scrap Swap (or two) as well.

Fun to spin. I'm not going to Navaho ply it though. I'll spin a second bobbin with the scraps from the next swap and ply the two bobbins together into one crazed barber pole yarn of many colours.

Monday, March 01, 2010

Madonna of the Yarnwinder.

I was sort of half listening to the news on the radio today when the phrase "Madonna of the Yarn Winder" caught my ear. Eh? So I went and Googled for it and found it's a painting. Really!

The news article, btw, was about the prosecution of the gang that had stolen the above from Drumlanrig Castle a few years ago. Story here, for anyone interested.

But. Really. I knew there was a Knitting Madonna..

(Detail from 'Visit of the Angel', from the right wing of the Buxtehude Altar. 1400 - 1410. Meister Bertram von Minden (1340 - 1414))

.. fact there's more than one..

(The Holy Family ca. 1345 Ambrogio Lorenzetti of Sienna (1290 - 1348))

...but this was the first I'd heard of a possibly spinning Madonna. Because, bah to the "yarnwinder" bit, that's a niddy-noddy the Baby Jesus has in his little mitts.

So I went looking..

(Madonna with the Child 1570s. Oil on wood, 72 x 52 cm The Hermitage, St. Petersburg)

I don't know why I find the thought of a spinning Madonna faintly amusing, but I do. The expressions on the first and last Madonnas' faces are priceless, actually. As are their hands, poised for a fast removal of spinning equipment from possibly sticky hands and drool, lol.