Spin Me Round Rumpelstiltskin

Posted Friday, 8 February, 2019

Hello crafty people and welcome to my first ever Spinning Post!

Those of you who have been following along on Instagram will already be familiar with my woolly activities this past week as I’ve been learning drop spinning.

For those who may not know, drop spinning is a method used to create yarn. You rely on gravity and good ol’ hand eye coordination to ply unspun wool into a workable yarn. This yarn can then be used for fibre arts, knitting, crochet, weaving or tapestry. It’s a pre-mechanised way that yarn was made prior to the advent of mass production. 

Thankfully, I haven’t been doing this alone. Courtesy of Erin, the talented boss lady behind Crafty Housewife Yarns, I had guidance and a fair bit of hand-holding in the form of her Drop Spindle Online Workshop.

Woolly little babies <3

Spinning and fibre arts in general have been something that I’ve been interested in for a while, but as with all new crafts it was a bit difficult to know where to start. There’s so much information out there and it can be a little daunting trying to wade through the plethora of YouTube tutorials and forums (especially if you’re like me and don’t have heaps of time to potter about). When Erin offered me the opportunity to participate in her course, it was the perfect jumping off point and gave me the confidence that I needed to just have a go.

I was delighted to find that the course is comprised of several videos according to topic, with each video being approximately 3-4 minutes in length. I love getting my information delivered to me in bite-sized chunks. I found that with the short videos, I was able to stop and rewind as needed and I didn’t lose my place as much as I do with longer instructional videos.

Erin’s relaxed, conversational approach and personal spinning anecdotes made me feel like maybe I really could do this! Honestly, it was so nice to have her virtually in my living room giving me tips.

And then there were four!

In a change of character for me, rather than getting frustrated at my work not being perfect, or fixating on the outcome, I just kept pausing, rewinding and trying again. Throughout the spinning process I was really curious to see how my little bits of fluff would turn into yarn. The relaxation aspect of spinning was an unexpected pleasure. Also, I felt a bit like a character from Rumpelstiltskin, so that was fun.

I loved the end result so much that I affectionately skeined them up.

I then took it one step further and had a go at doing some 2ply (that’s 2 stranded) artsy yarn. The result makes me think of Dr Seuss X Candyland.

 I went ahead and did a little knitted swatch too!

If the pictures aren’t enough of a clue; I’m terrible at spinning but I really enjoy it! I am optimistic that I will get better and for the first time in a long time, I found that I was enjoying doing something just because.

As an aside from a crafty person's perspective, I believe that it's invaluable to have some knowledge about the process of creating. If more people had an understanding of the skill it takes to handcraft something, perhaps it would give them pause and help them to select items for purchase more carefully or to respect what they have. We don't all have to be makers, but we can be appreciators. Just some food for thought.

If you’d like to have a go at drop spinning, I highly recommend Erin’s course. I love the interactive feel and the fact that you can access the content as many times as you like. Erin continues to review and update the lessons as well, so I love that it isn’t static.

All you need to get started is a drop spindle and some wool roving or a wool top (linked here is an article explaining the difference, although I don’t think it matters hugely when you’re just learning). I purchased my wool roving and drop spindle locally from Soft Senses Yarn. Erin also has everything you need available from her shop.

This Drop Spindle Online Workshop was gifted to me for review, but all opinions are my own.

Please let me know in the comments here (or via Instagram) if you’ve tried a craft like spinning and found yourself enjoying it more than expected. I’d love to know!

Have a fabulous Valentine's Day if we don't chat before then,