Knit and Spin
When I was ill I couldn’t get around for quite a while and wondered what I was going to do to keep me from getting bored. As I had never been off work before I didn’t want to fall into the trap of watching daytime TV all day, and I could not spend the whole day reading, so I decided to try knitting again.
The last time I knitted something I was about 12 and did not enjoy it as everything took too long. I remembered how to cast-on and how to do stocking stitch, but had to phone my mum to find out how to cast-off. After months of knitting & crocheting I found I really enjoyed it and haven’t looked back since.
But that got me thinking, how do you make your own yarn and what does that entail? I got a drop spindling kit from the web and tried that to get a sense of what it takes. It was okay but I found it made my neck and back hurt more, and so couldn’t continue. My husband told me that I would have to try a spinning wheel to see if that would work. I borrowed my friends and loved it, but it was a single treadle wheel. I found that using just the one foot / leg it caused me discomfort. This is because I have to keep an even balance on my body as I have metal rods and scaffolding drilled into my spine and I have to be careful. I also have some pain issues with my wrist and am having surgery soon to try and rectify that. Hopefully that will make life better in future.
After trying the single treadle wheel I went to a shop to try out some double treadle spinning wheels and it was great. I bought an “Ashford Joy” ex-demonstrator and it’s never let me down, it’s a great wheel. I still can’t sit for very long when I’m spinning but I just love it. I do have to say it took quite a while for me to spin well enough to actually make things from it and I’m still learning all the time. I now have my new Majacraft Aura but I’m using my joy too.
To help me with my spinning I bought a few DVD’s to watch, as I find it easier to learn from them rather than a book. However I do have a few good books as well which are great in helping with detail rather than technique. At the end of the day it is practice, practice, practice.