Every spinning lesson to be found on google and youtube, or, heaven forbid, in a book! will suggest starting with a drop spindle – so this I did!
It’s a tricky business, and ‘dropping’ the spindle, due to a yarn break, is a common hazard, but its very portable and affordable and is indeed a great way to get used to handling fibres.
Perseverance paid off, and I managed to create my first yarns – shocking my new friends at QWSFA mid week spinners who delighted in exclaiming that not only had I defied the norms by starting my spinning life with short fine fibres, I’d managed it with spindles suited making a carpet yarn! I owe a great deal to the kind support of many experienced members of this association, not least Kaleen at the QWSFA open day in May, who, so experienced she’s celebrated 40 years Ekka demonstrating this year, made it abundantly clear to me that if I wanted to spin cotton instead of wool, I should do just that, and promptly shared much wisdom with me to help me on my way!
I was itching to give my wheel a go, there is a great deal of fiddling to be done getting tensions right, however, yet again, you tube came to my rescue. I have played with ginned cotton and combed sliver. Very different to handle, and very different effects in the yarn, both beautiful.
My first yarns are full of character, and I thank Joan, for her cheerful encouragement that first yarns are precious, as once you learn how to make them fine and even, it’s really hard to make them lumpy and quirky!