My journey into the world of weaving



Which is what my head was doing after a full day of spinning lessons! My sister and I took the lesson together. Our teacher was Melodi at The Portland Fiber Gallery.

My sister took to spinning like a fish to water; I did not. I struggled. But by the 4th hour, something began to click. I was by no means good but I felt like everything was finally working together.

We used Louet Spinning wheels. My first difficulty came immediately with being able to make the wheel go in the right direction! It just didn’t want to. Here’s the spinning wheel I used and that I get to practice on for at least the next month:

spinning wheel

My second difficulty seemed to be in the releasing of the fiber to the wheel! Resulting in a lovely tangle of yarn! Using the small amount of yarn that I was able to create plus what I think was extra from my sister, I made my first sad little skein:

first skein

As I said, something did click in the last hour so I have rented the Louet for the next 5 weeks from Melodi. I have this first to use:


to make yarn and ply together.

Then I have this when I think I am ready:


I am going to take this a step at a time. I have Melodi’s words and concepts in my head and I have many spinners in my virtual world to view their work. I want to do this and I am not looking beyond this first month.

So spinning head notwithstanding I am going to learn to spin!

6 thoughts on “Spinning

  1. Try not to be discouraged with your first attempt at spinning. Relax and LET the wheel do the work, it will do the spinning believe me. I just taught myself how to spin this past summer and after spinning what I call worms (overspun singles) suddenly I was spinning nice singles – just like magic. Relax and enjoy the process, let the wool flow thru your fingers and try not to think about it, it will come be patient. You might try watching some spinners on YouTube they can be informative. Best wishes, Martha

  2. Yay! I’m so happy for you. Louet wheels are great for learning. Let me know if you need any virtual cheerleading!

  3. Thank you, Martha – that sounds like great advice!
    And, Melissa, I am fairly sure you are on my short list for some virtual cheerleading – thanks!

  4. There’s nothing sad about your first skein of handspun! I’m sure someone knows this better then me, but isn’t there a Navajo saying about spinning ten skeins of yarn…? Just keep turning the wheel (a nudge with the hand is perfectly acceptable) and enjoy the feel of that lovely fibre.

  5. Have fun! I’ve been spinning for just over a year. I’ve found that it’s not so much about making nice yarn as it is relaxing and enjoying the process. With some practice, nice yarn becomes a by-product!

  6. Over on Ravelry, there was a thread with some advice to a new spinner. First, drink a nice glass of wine. Pour yourself a second glass and then sit down to the wheel. This is to relax you a bit so that you don’t have a death grip on your wool. It might help a bit. And keep in mind, it always takes practice.

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