Friday, 26 July 2013

I won the lotto - AKA "Evelyn Strikes Again"

Last weekend, I was in the Niagra region for a wedding, and happily made it to 3 yarn shops in one day! I had just left The Fibre Garden, a spinning and yarn store in Jordan, ON, and I was on my way down the street to visit Stitch, when I got a text message. It was very alarming.

"My parents have moved out of their house. I have all of my mom's spinning stuff. It's yours if you want it. When can I drop it off?"

It was my old next-door-neighbour, the daughter of Evelyn, the woman I bought my wheel from!

When I got back in town, she came by with a truck load. When she left, I was shaking. I didn't know what to do. I didn't know who to call. Below is the tale of my bounty. Along with a vocabulary lesson.

The drum carder. It preps wool for spinning in a fraction of the time it takes to do with handcards. It can also be used to blend colours. I've wanted one since the day I bought my wheel, considering the number of fleece I have to process. They are prohibitively expensive to most spinners. One this size would cost me over $650 + shipping to buy. Evelyn's husband build this using drafting plans. Despite sitting in a closet for 30 years, a few drops of oil is all it took for it to work like new. It's such a masterpiece that even Nate was taken by it's non-traditional beauty. "This thing looks awesome" he says. 
And it does. 
A lovely set of handcards. You can't bring a drum carder with you everywhere!

A big, fat drop spindle. I have never tried a drop spindle, but this one is so soft and lovely and heavy that I've carried it with me for the last few days, hoping to find a moment to try it. 

A 'Lazy Kate' that holds three bobbins for plying yarn! Nate tried to make me one a few months back, but Angus got so upset when Nate turned the drill on, that the project was put on hold indefinitely. 

A spinning apron. If you look really closely you can see it says "Romney Wools Ltd" with a sheep on it. So vintage! And I feel so professional when I wear it.

A niddy noddy for skeining/measuring yarn after spinning. It's a small one, so it will not replace the beast my father-in-law Tom built for me out of an old chair at camp, but it's the perfect size for 50g skeins.

I didn't know what this was, so I posted on the Fibre Artist and Yarn Spinners Facebook group. I received many different responses from people, who all claimed to know exactly what it was, despite them all claiming it was something entirely different from one another. "I have been using one for years, it's a such-and-such" they all declared. It seems to be fairly conclusive that it is a yarn blocker, but can also be used as a silk real. Or if I were to install some mesh I could use it as a tumbler; or I think someone said something about adding pegs to make it a winder. These cost $400!
Oh my. A mixed bag of fibre, mostly unlabled, but the box says "silk, angora, mohair, camel down..." A huge mystery bin of very expensive fibre is what it is!
A Skein holder. When used in combination with a ball winder (shown below), a skein of yarn can gets rolled into a ball in moments. I have a cousin who took weeks to roll a ball of yarn (you know who you are). This was so fun, I had a dream about doing it the other night. Make all the bad jokes you want. Don't knock it till you try it.

Every issue of Spin Off magazine, from 1984 to 1990 (36 issues). Spinning is thousands of years old and the equipment hasn't evolved much, so I have no concerns about the magazines being 3 decades old. I'm not getting hair teasing and swim suit advice from a 1985 Elle MacPherson.

Or wait. Is this back in now?
So that's my lot, excepting a few more books and a doffer stick. My house is packed. I need a studio. And I haven't even written about the 1918 Finnish loom that was given to me by my friend Tuula last month! Another post for another day...


Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Jane Austen Tea 2013, Persuasion, Photo Gallery

Here is a gorgeous series of photographs capturing a few of the great moments from this year's tea. The person who I deemed to be the "Guest of Honour" is noticeably absent from the photos, as she also filled the role of photographer. My dearest friend, Katina Schell, extended her Sault Ste. Marie vacation for a few days just to be present, as she couldn't imagine a life in which she was unable to attend. At least that is what I choose to believe.