Saturday, 5 February 2011

Spinning together

Saturday at home, just me and Imogen as Alex has gone to the allotment and then to an event locally. I have done a fair bit of carding of the Zwartble fleece (it's going a long way!) and some spinning over the last few evenings and some on Friday. So when I said to Imogen that we would be at home together today I asked her if she would like to do a little spinning with me. This was met with a joyous yes.

Zwartble ready for spinning

She has had a little go with me a few times now, mainly with just holding the wool to spin and drawing it back ready for spinning, and a little treadling. So today she wanted to try the treadling so I got her to do some without any wool on the bobbin just to get the rhythm you need to keep up to keep the wheel spinning in the right direction - harder that it sounds for many people I've seen try it. She did pretty well, used two feet to help as it can be hard work for 5 year old legs!

getting used to the wheel spinning

We then introduced the wool and sat together spinning for a while, both of us treadling and drawing back the wool and she was mesmerised with the spin going up the wool and asking lots of questions about how it was all working - some she knew already and recalled well and some new to her.

 having a go at treadling and drawing the fibre

She then had a go with the whole process, treadling, drawing the wool back, releasing the wool to wind onto the bobbin. Easy? Well, maybe easy for me after having been spinning for coming up 2 years, but not so easy for Imogen, but hey she had a really good try. It is something hard to conquer when you first learn - trying to keep the treadling rhythm going whilst watching what is happening to the wool. I think she did really well and was very focused.
Imogen spinning solo
Keeping the rhythm proving a little troublesome!
What do you think? Not bad eh!

I then sat with her again and we did it together - she said it was easier with my help and was concentrating really hard on what we were doing. Here's the bobbin we filled together (plus another already done by me).

Bobbins ready to use

She was very pleased with herself and wants to show Alex later what we've done and show her how she helps me spinning. Not bad for 5, it takes some co-ordination. Progress anyway and she can't wait to do some more soon - a spinner in the making.

I'm going to Navajo ply this later along with the bobbins already done this week to free up the bobbins for more spinning of this gorgeous wool. Need to get some more batts carded first though.


  1. Well, looks like she's better at it than I am at the moment! Bu then she has got a fantastic teacher. What a wonderful skill to learn so young.

    I'm waiting to use the wool you sent for after I have picked up some tips at the guild!

  2. Well done, Imogen. I hope you continue to enjoy it. Then again you have got an excellent teacher. Look forward to seeing your first solo bobbin. I'm sure it will be soon.

  3. Aw, thanks Cheryl and Claire. She did love having a go, loves to have a go at anything.

    You will get there Claire, I have no doubt about it. Hope you pick up some good tips. I may well put up a post in the next few days about the tips I've picked up that made life spinning so much easier, but they may be easier to pick up on by watching others spinning and hands on experience.

  4. my parcel arrived today, in time for my first group. Thank you so much Dawn - you are very kind. I opened the parcel and James, always hovering when packages arrive, thought it was a beautiful smell - and it is. I took some carded fleece with me, and although it was a felting demonstration, everyone was so kind and helped me out. i have spun one of the rolags into some very thick and corkscrewed yarn - just struggling with the tensioning a bit, but I will get there. Imogen is miles ahead of me - how nice it must be to sit spinning with your daughter. xx

  5. How wonderful to be able to pass on your spinning knowledge to Imogen. It looks like she'll be spinning solo in no time at all.

  6. Wow! How lovely and very inspiring. :) I've just ordered my wheel, and am expecting it any day now, so I'm sure I'll soon know how she's feeling with the co-ordination thing! :) Tell her to keep up the good work, she's doing brilliantly!

  7. Thank you everyone, she has a long way to go but like all of us will get there one day.
    I look forward to seeing your spinning Jacqui - are you going to share a picture on your blog? Glad you got some help and tips at the spinning group. Claire's turn next ;)

    Hell Ashleigh, hope you are well. I knew you'd be getting a wheel one day! Hope you have fun, I'm sure you'll pick it up well - your drop spindle spinning is lovely.

    Ooh it's so lovely sharing spinning love, skills and tips with you all xxx


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