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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Patsie and I had a really enjoyable day yesterday when we had another one of our spinning workshops/courses. It was lovely to welcome back Judy with her new ‘Ashford’ wheel. The last time she came, she brought with her an old wheel she’d had for many years that had been tucked away in the corner collecting dust. After several brave attempts by Patsie to inject new life into it, it was a unanimous decision that if she was serious about spinning, Judy really needed to invest in another wheel. After several attempts on EBay, looking for something reasonable, Judy bit the bullet and brought a brand new one and very nice too – I thought, and it was clear this had paid off, as the progress she’d made with her spinning was evident. She produced a very nice chestnut brown wool, together with a couple of knitted items – not bad at all for a first attempt – well done Judy! We were also joined this time by Liz who had brought several sheep off Patsie earlier in the year and now, after having them shorn, was keen to put the fleeces to good use. Although not being a complete beginner, she’d felt that a few pointers from Patsie wouldn’t go amiss – the main one being “slow down – take your time” and throughout the course of the day, Patsie could be heard across the room shouting “your going too fast again” !!
After lunch and several glasses of Rosé, Patsie showed us some useful plying and carding techniques, used to create fancy wools and then announced we were going to try “Navaho plying”. I must admit this is not one of my strong points, the last time I attempted it, I got in a hell of a mess and it soon became evident that this time would be no different. It was at this point my wheel decided to show its age and started playing up. After 15 minutes of fiddling and messing about adjusting it, I realised that a quite serious snag had been created on the metal bit of the “mother of all” and no amount of adjusting was going to put it right. (This is my excuse for shoddy Navaho plying anyway). Like Judy’s old wheel, mine had been sitting in a corner since Steve had brought it 20 years previously on a buying trip to the Scottish Isles when he was in the Antique game and it wasn’t until moving here and the arrival of our alpacas that it came into play. Although not in full working order when he brought it, after a lot of hard work and trial and error from a very good friend and retired engineer Brian Foster , has served me well and is of great sentimental value, as several weeks after its completion, Brian was sadly taken from us when he suffered a massive heart attack, which came as a huge shock and left a massive void in a lot of peoples life’s, especially Lynn’s (Brains wife) – god bless you sweetheart and R.I.P. Brian. So, as nice as the new Ashford looks, I couldn’t possibly think of replacing mine. Thankfully, Mike, Patsie’s husband came to the rescue and understanding my plight, made some emergency adjustments last night in his workshop and hopefully all is well once again.
It was unfortunate that in the end Vanessa, who I met a Terralies last week, was unable to join us, due to illness, as I know she particularly wanted to learn plying techniques (hope she gets on better than I did) but we are looking forward to seeing her at the end of July for our next workshop. Anyone interested in joining us is welcome, but hurry there is only one place left. We make a small charge of 20 euro’s per day which includes lunch, wine, teas, coffee and a guaranteed laugh or two!!!
Posted by Jayne

1 comment:

  1. It was a good day and its always lovely to see people on their way to producing a spun fibre to their own design and to hopefully set them on their way to relax whilst spinning.