Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Spinning Up Memory Function

I have not touched a spinning wheel for more than 25 years. For some reason I got a wild hair to try it again but soon realized that spinning wheels were costly little items - and out of my pence pocket league for the time being. My friend Janet graciously lent me hers - and it is a beauty. It was hand made in 1978 (she bought it in 1980) by a man named Gunnar Lindberg who came to the United States from Sweden. Janet gave me the clipping she had about Mr. Lindberg - a newspaper article from the Seattle Times Magazine of May 4th 1980.

Mr. Lindberg came to the US in 1922 where he met and later married a woman from Chicago (also of Scandinavian descent). After fleeing Sweden during WWII they settled in Chicago, later moved to Minnesota and finally moved to the Seattle area in 1970. It was at that point that Gunnar, who had always been a craftsman with wood, made his first spinning wheel. The wheels are made of birch - and Janet's wheel has mellowed to a warm ,deep honey color. I love just having it to look at...and sometimes I just lazily treadle the wheel to hear it 'sing'.

The shawl that is so artlessly thrown over the wheel is an ultra simple one I am making for myself - I just wanted a 'color wrap' - my favorite colors for a chilled evening - or to combat the sometimes over zealous air conditioning at work. After that , my plan is to to try Koigu's shawl pattern called "Charlotte's Web". I need to be prepared for that though !

My first efforts to jog my spinning memory cells was not terribly successful - but I think I know what the problem is - so I have borrowed every book I could from the library (yes, we are blessed with a stellar library here) .. and am prepared to persevere until I prove that I can put my memory into action and spin some yarn. My favorite uncle once reminded that "der spinner" in German means something like nutty , crazy or madcap - and he was always happy and amused at my creative meanderings - so I took that as a complement. I expect he is watching me from his perch in heaven with a twinkle in his eye - egging me on no doubt! Who would have thought that I would discover knitting at such an 'advanced age' and then that I would want to resurrect another craft blast from my past ?! It's another circle in my life that's coming back around....and it sure feels good ! Thank's for the loaner Janet - I'm going to try and do something good with it !

1 comment:

Jenni @ Fairybread said...

I once tried spinning, and often wonder if I should give it another go. But then as you point out, it would mean buying "more stuff", and I am on a bit of a budget at the moment, so it is probably better not to go there LOL. Your wool looks fabulous though. I have recently become interested in knitting and covet some Koigu too.

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