4.12.2006

On Spinning and Spindles

Gracey wrote: Hey, I just wanted to say well done on the llama/spinning/knitting thing.. I worked my way a little backwards from you... I've knit forever.. I just decided to teach myself to spin on a drop spindle, and someday I want to own sheep. I spun some llama about a month ago.. I think it had been sitting in someone's attic.. so it was dusty and not too enjoyable... but I think i will give it another go with something clean! But yes, I just wanted to say I enjoyed reading your article emmensly!"

Hey Gracey! Thanks! I learned first on a drop spindle, and I'm totally convinced that's the way to go. I've met several people who tried to learn right on the spinning wheel and got so discouraged with spinning they gave up! The drop spindle is a little slow, but it's portable (and there are such beautiful spindles!).

I'm sure you can wash llama before using it, tho I've never done it. I imagine any gentle fiber wash would work. I know The Spinning Loft (www.spinningloft.us) carries several types of fiber washes. Also, llama fiber will vary widely in texture (just as wool does) from one animal to another. Even one llama will have softer, finer hair in some places, and coarser "guard" hairs in others that can be pulled out before spinning.

Good luck, and great hearing from you!

1 comment:

bgcarter@aol.com said...

My husband and I craved llamas and finally ended up with six of them. I was not going to let anybody else have that beautiful fiber, so I took a spinning lesson, instant obsession! Then, not to let my all-things-wool-crafted brother do something I couldn't, I took weaving lessons - just so I would know that I really didn't like it. Trouble - double obsession and a full time job away from the wheel and the loom. Two hours of drive whiz by thinking about "custom yarns" and the next pattern layout on the loom, or the best way to knit the new custom yarn.
I double dog dare you to take a weaving lesson!!
Bonnie in Massachusetts.