Wednesday, December 07, 2005



A question came up about the Canadian Production Wheel--yes, it is a 30" wheel. I have no idea about the ratios, because it is a genuine Aan-ti-que, they don't come with booklets and I'm too lazy to count the rotations of the wheel. In the cold wintery months of early 2003, I was living in Buffalo. Husband was off interviewing in Kentucky, but I decided to go to a nearby auction. On the way, I slipped on some black ice and one whole side of my jeans and coat were soaked. This did not stop me--I went to the auction anyhow, icy leg and all! It turned out to be some very lovely collections of old stuff, but I had eyes only for this spinning wheel. I bought it for $140, including the auctioneer's fee, and spent the weekend tuning her up. It's taken a bit of time and love to make her hum, but she does sing now.

This wheel doesn't have a big bobbin and it spins dk weight yarn or finer; that's it. I don't even usually ply on it. The blue merino/silk handspun yarn in the photo is spun on the Production Wheel but plied elsewhere... That's ok, I have a Schacht single treadle and a Majacraft Little Gem in my office for everything else, and even another antique, a primitive Great Wheel that doesn't get used much.

I always find myself rattling around this time of year, because my work life seems to slow down dramatically. I try to keep myself motivated and sending out submissions, but I don't get many responses while everyone's off at the office party drinking eggnog! In the meanwhile, I've done the edits on a couple of sweater designs for Knit Picks, spun and knit a hat for a farmer who gave me some fleeces last spring, and worked on some knitting for me. I'm still working on the never ending Romney pea coat, this is a handspun, handknit coat that I hope to wear in the winter time...someday. The Romney ram fleece I'm using is from the aforementioned farmer. The ram was over 300 lbs and the fleece was 12 lbs+ when it was raw, over 8 lbs washed and carded! I'm knitting it very densely with a size 7 needle and it is slow slow slow. You can see that handspun in the photo, too, it a brown gray bulky weight yarn that looks just a bit too gray in this picture. I've also been working on a sweater "renovation," some nice mindless stockinette. Perhaps 8 years ago, I made myself a very short, practically empire waist cardigan out of handspun. I no longer wear it because, well, my tummy gets too cold! I'm putting on an addition--I picked up the stitches at the bottom of the cardi to add length and warmth.

It's supposed to snow here in Kentucky tomorrow--I can't wait! I miss snowy winters. We have the cold temperatures; it was 19 degrees F while I walked the pooches this morning, but maybe only one snow a winter. I hope it's a good one!

2 Comments:

Blogger Melanie said...

What lovely handspun. Sigh. When can you show us the pea coat?

December 7, 2005 at 3:26 PM  
Blogger Joanne said...

Ahh, Mel, right now the pea coat is one back, one left front, and half of a right front! It only looks like pieces of knitting, ... I believe it is one of the first patterns in the Winter 2004 Vogue Knitting Mag. Knitting bulky weight yarn into seed stitch on a #7 takes a long time...plus, I'm getting tired of it and I still don't have a digital camera. I hear I'm getting a cast-off camera soon, though, so watch out, blog world!

December 8, 2005 at 7:36 AM  

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