Instagram completely takes the blame for this, because I wasn’t even remotely interested until I saw gorgeous pictures of hand-spun yarn from someone who had liked one of my posts. She had these beautiful skeins of yarn spun with a drop spindle, awesome! Yours truly was captivated, and the rest of course is history.
After spending a long time feeding my eyes on gorgeous hand-spun yarn, I found myself on the internet reading all I could find on spinning with a drop spindle. At some point during my quest for knowledge, the book Respect The Spindle by Abby Franquemont found it’s way into my Amazon shopping basket. A few days later, I made my way to World of Wool, where the learner’s kit (below) also managed to find its way into my basket. At £13.99 excluding shipping, it was simply irresistible.
In the kit were 3 different colours of 25g merino fibre (there’s a choice of fibre to select from), a 60g top whorl drop spindle and instructions to get started. Of course, I immediately set to work, and fast-forward to recently, I finished my first ever hand-spun single/yarn on a drop spindle.
My single is a mixture of thick and thin, some parts have a lot of twist and others little or none, but it’s lovely regardless. I used a combination of “park and draft” and drafting while still spinning to achieve the yarn below. I haven’t done anything to it yet as I want to learn the spinning bit first.
A few days ago, I started on the second of the three fibre that came in the kit. Before then, I’d come across this excellent video by Spinning Sara (MrsFlick on Ravelry) on how to draft consistently, so I’m a bit more consistent this time.
Below is my current spin close-up; there’s still some inconsistencies but it’s a lot more uniform than my first attempt.
Since I still have more fibre (I couldn’t just buy the kit, could I? 🙂) to spin, but only one drop spindle, I’ve being thinking of buying a couple more especially as I read it’s a good idea to let the yarn rest on the spindle before unwinding. However I’m torn between buying basic ones like the one at 30g, or splurging on the Akerworks spindle system (can be dismantled for travelling, and the components are interchangeable – whorls and shafts can be mixed and matched to get different weights, the whorl can be moved to the top, bottom or anywhere in between) I’ve been drooling over ever since I saw it.
I say splurge because I’ve not seen it sold in the UK/Europe, and shipping to this part costs $20; add VAT at 20% and Royal Mail fees (£8 the last time I ordered from the US), and it becomes really expensive. So, the 30g spindle from World of Wool has the upper hand for now, and I just might use that opportunity to acquire a bit more fibre 😉 for practice. For the going price (£7.95), I think they’re a bargain because they do spin really well.
So, here’s looking forward to a successful spinning adventure 🥂, because I really do enjoy the process.