I love to knit and crochet, and I think the aspect that attracts me most is watching lovely colors and textures come together. So, when my friend invited me along to a 4H class to learn how to dye and spin yarn a year or so ago, I joined readily. I left the class even more curious but completely overwhelmed. Fortunately, the latter feeling rarely stops me.
Fast forward to last fall when a trusted fiber goat breeder offered some of her kids for sale for a price I simply could not resist. So, Purl and, a week later, her twin sister, Knit(wit), joined the family.
Purl (left) & Knit
Since then, I have been tackling a pretty steep learning curve about fiber goats care and yarn spinning. (Hint: do not purchase young animals just before the wettest, most miserable winter on record for Washington.) Indeed, one of my goals this summer is to process the two bags of fleece I sheered from Knit and Purl this past winter and spring into yarn.
Always being cost conscious, I decided very quickly that I would use the drop spindle method of spinning, rather than use a spinning wheel because a drop spindle can be bought for well less than $20, while spinning wheels run in the hundreds of dollars. Still, there was something intriguing about the lovely wheels. . . .
I’d put the whole matter to rest some time ago, when my husband asked me this week if I’d be interested in a wheel? Apparently, he spotted one in pictures of an estate sale happening this weekend. I jumped at the chance to at least look at it. And so this happened today:
In one class I took on spinning, the instructor warned us to make certain that the wheel we purchased wasn’t just decorative, as apparently novices make that mistake and end up with a wheel that was never meant to spin. At the sale today, the cashier knew that the current owner had only used this wheel for decoration, but I suspected it might have been used for spinning by an earlier owner. So, we haggled a wee bit and settled on a price that was half the asking price and well less than one hundred dollars.
Closer examination at home has confirmed that this wheel was and can most likely be used for spinning, but it clearly needs a great deal of TLC. So, now I’m off to learn about the care, maintenance, and repair of spinning wheels. A new project is born!