Everything for the weaver, spinner, knitter, felter and dyer...

Everything for the weaver, spinner, knitter, felter and dyer...

Thursday, October 3, 2013

In the eye of the beholder....

There are two floors here at Purple Fleece. Downstairs is the retail area with spinning wheels, fiber, yarns, needle felting, samples, other equipment, patterns, etc. Upstairs is the studio where our fiber groups meet, I weave and spin and dye, and where I teach. When someone new stops at the shop and I feel that there might be some interest in seeing the studio, I offer to take them upstairs and give them the tour. It always surprises me as to what they see and comment on.

For some people it's the looms and the weaving. They're drawn to color and texture. I often demonstrate a few shots of weaving to give them an idea of how it all happens.

For others, the first thing they comment on is the area where our groups meet and knit and spin and chat. It's pretty cozy with all the couches.

Others spot the great wheel and never notice the other smaller spinning wheels in the room despite the fact that it's tucked away behind a lot of other stuff.

...and then there's the dyeing area. People are a little surprised that I can do so much in such a small area.

All in all, the studio is my playground and where I make it all happen. It is funny to see what grabs someone.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

"Is it cheaper?"

It's been a while since my last blog posting. I stopped vending at craft fairs and sheep and wool festivals about a year ago. Now that I'm no longer demonstrating spinning in my booth, I realize that I miss some of the more frequent questions that I would hear.

"How do you do that?" That would most often come out the mouths of children who were spellbound by the wheel turning round and round. I would often answer "it's magic" and then go on to explain about wool from sheep and yarn for their sweater.

"Is it cheaper?" That would most often come from adults who wanted to know if they could save money by making their own yarn versus buying it at the fair, yarn store, big box store, etc. After explaining what it costs to raise, feed, shelter, shear the sheep, wash the wool, buy the spinning wheel, add in your time it becomes very clear that it is not cheaper.

"Why do you spin your own yarn?" I try to explain what a meditative experience spinning is once you've mastered it. I love the feel of the fiber moving through my fingers and being shaped into the yarn I want. I adore spinning my hand dyed fiber and watching the colors change as I make progress. There's nothing better. It's all about the journey and not the destination...