One Crazy Fiber Lady

The ramblings of a fiber-affected single mother of twins who makes a living as a code monkey

One Crazy Fiber Lady

Entries from May 2008

Quality Time

May 29th, 2008 · 5 Comments

If Tuesday is for Twirling, Wednesday is for WIPs.. lets break em out.  

Kat's Amore!

First up is Kat’s Amore. ¬†I’ve made some decent progress on the first sleeve. ¬†I haven’t exactly been a monogamous knitter with this, which explains why it isn’t finished yet. ¬†I’m guilty of reading on the train again. ¬†I’m still deep in my¬†Philippa Gregory obsession and am on the third of her books and as I’m coming towards the end of it, the less I knit on the train and the more I read. ¬†Never fret, I have two more of her books waiting in the wings 🙂 ¬†Anyway, I should be getting back to this shortly.

Orkney Pi

Seeing as it was still WIP Wednesday and I’m trying to whittle them down before the SOL and SOS officially being on 6/21 and not actually start anything else (a big problem right about now), I pulled out some golden oldies. ¬†I had to transfer Orkney Pi to a longer cable so took the opportunity to get a better picture of at least part of this pi shawl. ¬†This morning on the train I neither read nor knitting on Amore, but worked 2 rounds on this. ¬†Yes, only two. ¬†Each is now 640 stitches. ¬†She’s going to be a big girl when she grows up as there is a 1280 stitch section after this one.

kauni eq

Not to be outdone, I spend some of my WIP Wednesday time Winding. ¬†I spent good quality time with my ball winder. ¬†Remember way back when I started the Kauni, I figured out that one of my four skeins was wound in the opposite direction. ¬†As I’m nearing the ends of the first skeins, it was time to do something about it. ¬†I rewound both of the remaining skeins so that they are going in the same color progression. ¬†This picture makes me smile. ¬†I’ve since broke off the remaining yarn and connected these two to the sleeve at the right points in the color progression. ¬†Fortunately I didn’t loose much in the way of yardage to accomplish this task. ¬†I have Kauni in the car in case I get motivated to work on her this evening at SnB. ¬†

sasquatch sock

I know I announced a few days ago that I was starting new socks with the Flat Feet yarn I bought a while back. ¬†Well I did. ¬†Except I can’t say as I enjoyed knitting with crinkly frogged yarn very much. ¬†It is pretty but not a pleasurable experience when paired with a lace sock. ¬†I’m not much in the mood to knit plain socks at the moment and definitely not in the mood to unravel the entire Flat, wash and wait, so back into stash it goes. ¬†I pulled out another new to me yarn, Lime & Violet’s Sasquatch Sock in Mahjong. ¬† I have the pattern for Ina’s SOS2007 design winner all printed out and ready to go. ¬†

You might think that that was all the time I spent with the ball winder, but you’d be wrong. ¬†I had some seriously quality and quantity time with it. ¬†My merino laceweight arrived and I was eager to get that wound. ¬†All 1750 yards of it. ¬†That would be the downside to lace! ¬†It was all I could do to not cast on for it last night. ¬†I did content myself to making a stitch marker for the center stitch. Yup, truly rediscovered the whole beading hobby 🙂



I figured that while I had the camera out, I should find the little bookworm bobbin lace project. ¬†I tracked down where my daughter hid it. ¬†isn’t it cute? ¬†I now am using it for its intended purpose. ¬†Why yes, as a bookmark! ¬†I loves it :)¬†


Since I haven’t posted a picture of the popular and goofy cat in a while, here she is in all her glory. ¬†Even declawed she manages to get into odd spots. ¬†I snapped this this morning after I spotted her sitting on the top of the high back chair in the living room. ¬†Good old Sara.

Having now spent quality time with the posting tool, I’m off to spend some quality time with my .NET console program to extract users from Active Directory.

Craft on!

Tags: Books · Kauni Damask · Kids · Lace · Stash Enhancement

New and Old

May 28th, 2008 · 7 Comments

first bobbinSince yesterday was officially Twirling Tuesday, I pulled out a spinning wheel (or two) to use.  I spun a bit more of the blue-green merino on the Ladybug, but then moved to the recently neglected Matchless and the red mix that I bought from Little Barn at MD.  

I think I need a solid navy merino to ply with this. ¬†I initially bought a black merino for that purpose but I didn’t have the red fiber with me and couldn’t offhand remember what colors were paired with it. ¬†Time to prowl the net.

beading project I’ve rediscovered an older hobby that hasn’t gotten much attention in a few years. ¬†Partially because most of those supplies are sadly, still in my storage unit, tucked way way in the back behind the Ikea shelving units. ¬†Well, the trip to AC Moore led me down the beading aisle because I needle small beads for the projects in the bobbin lace book. ¬†I bought all sorts of stuff. Saturday night I found under my bed in a shoebox all the supplies for a necklace project that was in a Bead magazine. ¬†I must have purchased the stuff last spring, got distracted by something else and just tucked it away, forgotten.¬†

first of many

Not forgotten anymore. ¬†This is the project picture in the magazine with the first of the 5 necessary gold squares that I’ve finished. ¬†I’m using gold delicas and a right angle weave to make these up. ¬†I’ve so far made two of them. ¬†Each one has taken about an hour to put together. ¬†I had to order additional threads for this last night in the topaz and black colors. ¬†While I was at the site, I might have ordered supplies to make another necklace 😉 ¬†And Laurie said I’d go blind with bobbin lace! ¬†The next project with the size 15/0 beads will really make the eyes work!


As if I needed further evidence that my kids are kind of weird, I walked into my bathroom last night to find a toothbrush on the wall. ¬†This is what happens when you mix a four year old and a toothbrush with a suction cup on the other end. ¬†I have to admit, it was not the first time one of the monkeys did this. ¬†Kat was infamous for sticking hers just about anywhere, including the edge of the sink, I just never remembered to photograph it. ¬†I never know what I’m going to find when I walk in there. ¬†Weird.

Craft on!



Tags: Beading · Family · Spinning

can you read me now?

May 27th, 2008 · 4 Comments

sorry for the dreaded second post in a single day but I wanted to try out a moblogging solution beyond flickr. I am not keen with how flickr puts the text in both places. soooo a little googling turned up a .NET app for win mobile devices that reminds of the app that I had for typepad on my treo. fingers crossed.

craft on!

Posted from moBlog – mobile blogging tool for Windows Mobile

Tags: Geek Stuff · Misc

The Long Weekend

May 27th, 2008 · 4 Comments

It is back to work day, but I had a glorious three days off. 

Saturday was devoted to running errands avec les monkeys.¬† There were stops at the jewelers to drop off my diamond studs to have the post fixed on one (I used it to tighten my knitpicks needle and managed to break it – totally stupid), AC Moore for perle 8 cotton for the bobbin lace, JaCques Penney for new underwear for the boy, and finally PetSmart as all the pets were out of foodstuffs.¬† I’m sure there were other stops, oh yeah, the Apple Store for a nifty new keyboard and Jessica’s house to feed Stitches while she’s away, not to mention the ever popular McD’s for lunch.¬† The downside to working in the city all week is that these little errand trips can only be done on weekends, and add in the county blue laws that limit them to Saturday alone.¬† Oh well.¬† Fact of life and one I’m used to even if I don’t like it.¬† I broke out the bobbin lace and did the first bookmark in the book.¬† Cool!¬† No pictures of that, I totally forgot and Kat ran off with the thing.


The rest of the weekend was spent on the boat enjoying the family and spending time with friends.¬† We’re really good friends with the people on the boat next to us.¬† The owners are about the same age as my folks who have three daughters as well.¬† Their oldest daughter is away and the grandfolks had their two granddaughters for the weekend:¬† 8 and 5.¬† The girls and the twins spent alot of time together.¬† The families had a bbq at the marina Saturday night and then birthday cake for the Mr (who also happens to be our dentist).¬†


The twins discovered for the first time that they can get on and off the boat by themselves. It can be a big step and we made sure that they were wearing their PFD’s anytime they moved above.¬† And yes, Miss K is wearing a dress.¬† She doesn’t like pants.¬† At all.¬† Boy did they make mom nervous with all their off and on’ing.¬†

kat's amore

With the kids playing with the girls next door, I got some nice quiet time to get some knitting done.¬† They were off on a dingy ride with the other grandpa when I took this picture out on the bow.¬† I nearly lost the thing overboard in a gust right after the bow picture.¬† I managed to grab the yarn right as the sweater went below the rail.¬† Doh.¬†The color is¬†acurate for a change.¬† I took¬†the picture in full sunshine with the white hull beneath.¬† I should save all my blog¬†photos¬†for blog weekends 🙂 ¬†I’ve since finished the body and the tie/neck.¬† I replicated the tie/neck from Shaped V-Neck.¬† I put the stitches for the first sleeve on the needles this morning on the ferry.¬† I have to say, I love knitting for the monkeys.

I hope everyone who celebrated had a good memorial day.¬† I surely did.¬† Add in that the CSM has a new home and I’m doubly happy!¬† I’m back to only one.¬† A good thing.

Craft on!

Tags: Family · Kids


May 23rd, 2008 · 5 Comments

the needles keep on knitting…

UzumeFirst up is a FINISHED OBJECT! Woot. My first pair of finished socks in an age and a half.

Pattern: Uzume by Monkey Toes

Yarn: Koigu KPPPM

Needles: US1 – 2 circs

Started: 5/8/2008

Finished: 5/22/2008

Flat Feet

I knit these for the Sockdown for May. Sweet. I feel the mojo is back and next up in the sock queue is this yarn which is the seriously different Flat Feet by Conjoined Creations. Interesting concept. The yarn is knit flat, hand painted and then you knit from the flat. Call it sock yarn and I’m pretty much game to try anything 😉 I’m pairing it with the Climbing Lace Socks. Yup, definitely in a lace sock phase presently.

Kat's Amore

So as to further shock and amaze everyone, not only have I spun, plied and washed a pound of fiber since returning from MDSW, I’m actually also knitting it up. I cast on for Kat’s new sweater with the Pound of Love fiber. I started using the Incredible Custom-Fit Raglan, borrowed a bit from other patterns and got busy. I’m calling it Kat’s Amore! While it is small today, it is my train knitting.¬† Hopefully I can get a better picture of it shortly.¬† The colors are not quite there in this picture.¬† It is a tad pinker in real life.


I mentioned earlier in the week that I had ordered supplies for something else fiber related.¬† Well in an amazing feat for Jo-Ann’s, I actually received Monday’s order yesterday.¬† I KNOW!!¬† I didn’t even rush order it.¬† I nearly fell over when I got home to find the box waiting for me last night.¬† What was in it?¬† Oh yeah.¬† A beginner’s bobbin lace kit.¬† Yeah, I needed something else to do.¬†¬† Hey it was a hobby that involved thread and/or yarn that I haven’t tried yet.¬† Any guesses what I’ll be playing with over the long weekend? 🙂

Speaking of which, all those celebrating, have a very good Memorial Day Weekend!

Craft on!

Tags: Kids · Socks

Pound of Love

May 21st, 2008 · 6 Comments


..ew, not that horrible yarn, that dreaded ass-crylic (thanks Kim for that name!).  No, this is much better yarn.  This is my handspun.  The first handspun off the new Ladybug too.

I haven’t yet measured the yardage in these two huge skeins of yarn so no, I haven’t a clue what I’ve got.¬† One ply is the Mystery Bump from Still River Mill.¬† The other is BFL from Little Barn.¬† Both fibers were purchased this year at MDSW.¬† I know, I’m shocked too.¬† I did the spinning in about a week.¬† Saturday I pulled out the Fricke eSpinner, dug up a couple of empty Majacraft WW bobbins and got busy.¬† Over the course of 3 hours I filled up 3 bobbins completely and finished all the singles while I watched The Tudors on Showtime.¬† (I LOVE that show!!!!).¬† Sunday I used the skeiner for Suzie and wound off the bobbins.¬† I joined two of them to make that massive skein on the left.¬†¬† After three days of hanging about, the yarn is finally dry.¬† I might actually try and figure out how much I have.¬† It’s about a worsted weight. I have no doubts that I’ll have enough yardage to make the little miss a cardi out of it.¬† I’m planning a top down raglan for her.¬† She’s requested ties like my recent sweater.¬† I can honor that request!¬† Now that clapo-two is done, I can get to work on this for her.

In between futzing with the blog and updating the template finally (I’d been using the default Kubrick theme since moving to WordPress in January – kind of embarassing for someone who makes their living doing web work eh?) I decided what lace I want to do for the coming season of lace.¬† Call it a convergence of yarn and pattern.


First I saw a link to an indie dyer’s Etsy store while reading the SOL board on Ravelry.¬† The colors in the banner just drew my mouse to it and I was powerless in avoiding the click.¬† A few more clicks and I found THE yarn.¬† (Picture from ColorfulSheep).¬† That is 1750 yards of dyed laceweight merino.¬† I’m a sucker for laceweight merino.¬† Not to mention completely incapable of using stash yarn, but I digress.

Mystic Waters Shawl

Anyway, after being compelled to order that yarn, I knew the right pattern for its deep blue goodness:¬† Mystic Waters!¬† I’ve seen a bunch of these done on Ravelry and throughout my blog travels (of which I’m terribly behind right about now) and just adore it.¬† (Picture is naturally not mine – but click for bigness).¬† I’m really looking forward to working on this!¬† I wonder if I can whip out Kat’s sweater before the SOL starts.¬† Hmmm…

Craft on!

Tags: Lace · Spinning · Stash Enhancement


May 20th, 2008 · 11 Comments


Ma clapotis, elle est finis!¬†Et¬†ici pour les¬†knitters sans Ravelry.¬† Now that I’ve used just about all the french that I remember from high school..

In the “about time” category is this silly clapotis that took me forever and a day to knit.¬† The first one only took a week.¬† Can’t wait to see how long a third one would take!¬† In this puppy’s defense, I did misplace the yarn a third of the way through it.¬† On the up side, the weather is so damn crappy that I got to wear it this morning.¬† YUM.¬† That Lion & Lamb is to die for!¬† Yum Yum.

I found a nice big holder to use to take a picture this morning.¬† Yup, that would be my car, rather the mommy mobile, sitting in the parking lot waiting for the train.¬† Yeah I know.¬† I’m odd.

I want to thank everyone for their well wishes last week for the little miss.¬† Thursday did prove to be the healthy day.¬† Her fever stayed away and she was able to get back to school on Friday.¬† Was even healthy enough for a playdate on Sunday.¬† Boy that was fun.¬† Having two 4.5 year olds in a single house is nowhere near enough.¬† You need to have a third come over and bring her 2 year old brother with her!¬† Oh yes and make sure it rains too 😉


I’ve been knitting away on Uzume and hit the short rows on the flap heel this morning on the ferry. I should be well onto the foot tonight.¬† I’m definitely making the Sockdown May deadline on this pair.¬† I’m all ready to wear them too.¬† I got some seriously nifty shoes last week.¬† Yup, clear Sketchers.¬† In my wee size even!¬† Not the bestest of pictures to show off their transparent coolness, but¬†you can see that they have nice ventiliation to keep the socked feet cool.¬† Got a serious breeze as I stepped off the ferry this morning!¬†¬† Loves them already.¬†

Really, that’s about it for today.¬† I’ll have some activity shortly.¬† I ordered supplies for two new crafts that have intrigued me in the past and yes, in character, they do involve yarn or threadlike substances.¬† I’ve also joined another along for the summer:¬† the Season of Lace.¬† Heck I’d already proclaimed this summer the summer of lace..and socks.¬† I’m itching to start a new lace project.¬† Shut up, I know I have a few already in the works.¬† I might swap Unst square shawl for the Unst stole.. or one of a gillion other lace pieces that are in my queue.¬† I’m trying to decide between a big piece (Unst) or a little one (like Leaf Lace or Shetland Triangle).¬†¬† Decisions, decisions, decisions.¬† Whatever I do, I need to use some of the copious amounts of stash yarn.

Craft on!

Tags: Adult


May 15th, 2008 · 13 Comments

Sorry for the sustained silence.  It has been a somewhat rough week. 

Tuesday morning, before the alarm clock, I was awakened by the combined sounds of the croup and gagging, paired with a little crying.¬† Mommy-superhero lept out of bed and went a-running.¬† I found Kat sitting on the edge of her bed and had my hand in position just in time.¬† I shall spare the messy details.¬† I took her immediately to my bathroom where I ran the shower on HOT but for a change the steam didn’t ease her breathing.¬† I popped sweaters on both of us and went for the other option:¬† outside and cold air.¬†¬† A little better but sadly she started crying, which resulting in coughing, gagging and more mess.¬† Poor little thing.

Since then she’s been running a fever on and off.¬†¬† The dosage of children’s motrin is enough to bring it down for long enough that I don’t have to do the magic cocktail of alternating it with tylenol.¬† But I’m concerned that this is the second time she’s had the croup since August.¬† (I knew she had it before but couldn’t remember when.¬† A coworker remembered her – actually both the twins did – having it shortly after I started.)¬† There is a family history of asthma, including mom who has it very badly.

Today is actually my first day going into the office.¬† I’d been working remotely so I could stay with my little girl.¬† I just had to go in today, but never fear, she’s been fever free (knock wood) since early yesterday and was playing a board game with mom the last time I called.

Needless to say I haven’t had much time for the old crafting hobbies. The wheel(s) have been untouched since Sunday.¬† The knitting has been idle for longer.¬† The last bit of knitting I remembered doing before this morning, was Friday evening on the way home.¬† I’m a few inches short of the toe on the first of the Uzume socks.¬† I love the pattern.¬† I’d highly recommend it as a great lace sock.¬† There’s only 3 rows to remember, everything else is a straight knit.¬† Awesome.¬† I now find that a simple pattern like that, or even Monkey or Hedera, can make socks fly.¬† Not sure why.¬† There are the same number of rows in a plain sock, but they just seem to go faster, even with the manipulation.¬† Or is it that you can see more progress?¬† Whatever it is I might just pull out one of my stitch bibles and start designing my own simple lace socks.

To prevent this from being a completely pictureless post, I took this shot of Sara this weekend.¬† I discovered the ISO setting on my Rebel XT.¬† I forgot how much I love that camera!¬† You can see how her coat is coming back in.¬† She’s got the guard hair, it is the undercoat that is almost entirely missing still.¬† Funny cat.¬†


(Click to embiggen as always.)


Craft on!

Tags: Family

Mother’s Day

May 12th, 2008 · 9 Comments

Looking out the window now it is hard to remember how nice yesterday was.¬† Actually it was a pretty darn decent weekend all around. I had a lovely mother’s day, spendning most of it outside with the kids playing and Ladybug keeping me company.¬†


I finished the spinning the Still River Mill Mystery Bump singles, as well as 8oz of BFL from Little Barn to ply with it.¬† I just need to pull out the Fricke electric, find an empty Majacraft WW bobbin or two and then I can get to work.¬† You can see the range of colors through the two cakes.¬† Paired with the natural BFL, it should make a nice sweater for the little miss.¬† I’ll do a top-down raglan for her as I think that will bring out the best in the color changes plus.¬†


I can’t believe I spun a pound of fiber in a week.¬† I even finished another bobbin worth of the black corriedale on the Vermont wheel.

Amazing!¬† I started a new project yesterday.¬† This time it is dyed Merino from Clover Leaf Farms in Jungle Fever.¬† I picked up two 4oz braids of it at MDSW this year.¬†¬† I’m hoping to get a solid merino in either a dark blue or maybe a hunter green to ply with and make Alex a sweater.¬† Those colors would¬†look gorgeous on him.

And now a pictorial essay of my weekend:








I hope other mother’s had such a nice special day.

Craft on!

Tags: Family · Socks · Spinning

Yeeee Haaaw – Wild Wheel Roundup

May 9th, 2008 · 11 Comments

Time for a spinning wheel roundup. I get a lot of questions about various wheels, rightly so I suspect, as I’ve owned quite a number of them. This post was born from a recent discussion with Manise. So here goes, all the wheels I’ve have/had. I’m trying to keep the herd stable so  a lot of wheels go simply because a new one came in and one had to git.

1. Lendrum Upright – first wheel. Still have it. It is a great all purpose wheel. It was able to do everything I ever asked it to do. I have loads of bobbins and even a woolee winder (big surprise – this too is pretty common in my herd) for it. I don’t use it very often, especially since the ankle injury as it is a double treadle that puts a bit too much strain on the bum right foot. It now lives in Kat’s room and she has declared it hers.

Updated – this is now SOLD too. I had to sell something when the Van Eaton was purchased. I wasn’t able to use this wheel thanks to the bad ankle, but still felt sad at its sale.

2. Lendrum Saxony – second wheel. Opted for both the Scotch and Double drive, used it primarily in DD. Sold it last year after MDSW and the Vermont wheel entered. It is a beautiful wheel that I produced some very very fine cobweb on it. Spun effortlessly. One complaint, and I mentioned it in previous posts, is the construction of the treadle support that caused it to flex when treadling and generated an annoying squeak.

3. Majacraft Rose – third wheel. Also a nice all purpose wheel, though a touch prettier than Suzie. The wheel is a bit heavier than I would like in a portable and the wood on the treadles was a tad too soft and would ding if something fell on them. Folding it up as designed would result in dings on the treadle. I took to wrapping the flyer in a towel before swiveling. I sold this one to Chris to support the purchase of my Womack Butterfly spinner as I was newly pregnant with twins and fully expected some kind of bed rest. Little did I expect that the bed rest would be in the hospital.

4. Womack Butterfly Spinner. Saw it the first time at MDSW. Perfect for the above mentioned expected bed rest. I liked it better than Chris’ Roberta electric that I tried during our trip to MDSW. The Womack is Scotch (flyer lead)tension while the Roberta is Irish (bobbin lead). Up until that point, all my previous spinning experiences had been with Scotch or Double. The Irish wasn’t comfy for me. The Womack is cool. I picked up a Woolee Winder for it. With the addition of a foot switch, this would be perfect. The wood base is absolutely gorgeous. Price on it has jumped considerably since I bought it too. Mr. Womack joked with me this weekend that he’d give me a full refund on mine 😉 Nice man, remembers me from year to year at the festival.

–its here that I lose what order they came and went.

5. Ashford Traditional – Had for a short time. Never really liked. Can’t exactly remember why. Does have lots of doo-dads that you can buy for it. I think her small footprint and the single treadle gave some fits as she was my first single. Ironic considering I started swapping the DT’s for ST’s not too long ago.

6. Kromski Mazurka – sold. Another ST/DD option wheel. Little thing. Never really bonded with her. Fell prey to the same problem that the Traddy did, single treadle. This wheel only allowed me to sit in one particular way to treadle and if I was out of place, the wheel would tip. Footprint I felt was a little too small and made it a bit unstable.

7. Jensen Tina II – still own. Lovely little wheel. Excellent spinner. Another ST/DD optional wheel. Another WW and bobbins. Has all sorts of extra whorls for a wide variety of speeds. Sweet thing that I should really use more often and completely forget about it. It currently lives in the entry foyer. If memory serves, the last time I used her was Mother’s Day last year when I remembered how very sweet she is. Tough to get one of these babies used. This is one of a few wheels that I didn’t buy new.

Update: 7/2011 – I still own this wheel.  It unfortunately does not get the usage that some of the others do, but as she sits in the entry foyer, everyone sees her.  When I do pull her out to use her, I’m reminded of how very nice a wheel she is.  I’ve since sold the WW and bobbins and primarily use it with the higher speed whorls and fast bobbins.

8. Journey Wheel- sold to Deb. Another ST/DD optional wheel. Sadly, no available WW 😉 Single Treadle. First one that didn’t make me nuts. A gorgeous design and beautiful handiwork. The wood case though does operate as a bit of a soundboard reflecting the song of that wheel back at the spinner. Interesting. Definitely need to buy a fabric cover/bag for it as the wood can be damaged easily.

Updated:  I’ve since replaced this with another Journey Wheel.  It wasn’t long after selling mine to Deb that I wanted it back.  Took a while, but I managed to put my hands on another one.  It is of older vintage then my original but that just means that the Cherry wood is just that much more beautiful.

9. Hitchhiker – sold to Dorre – Bought one from the initial batch if I remember correctly back at the first MASW where they were sold. Even had a lefty one. Cute. Plus is that they use ashford bobbins. When the multiple ratio option was added, made the wheel a bit more versatile. Excellent for portability, couldn’t spin on it for long periods.

10. Majacraft Suzie Pro – sold. Nice wheel. Have WW for it. No difference really between this and the Rose. Originally bought it because of the plastic bobbins and the grease spinning I was doing at the time. It lives in the den right now and hasn’t been used in a while. Both Mom and Alex consider it their wheel. Sold this wheel as I don’t use it. While it is an excellent all around wheel, I have a couple all around wheels and really needed a wheel that was small and folded pretty darn flat (so that I can take it on the boat and tuck it in the forward cabin closet and dad wouldn’t object). I’ve replaced it with an Ashford Joy.

11. Fricke E-Spinner – still own. Woolee Winder. Foot switch. Box. A very decent espinner. Uses Majacraft bobbins, though a modified version of the flyer as it doesn’t turn on, but has a thumb screw. I use it primarily for plying. Between the foot pedal and the WW, it is ideal for that. Not quite as pretty as the Womack (which is currently in storage), but with the case, it isn’t bad 🙂 –

Updated – this is now SOLD – I honestly didn’t need both the Fricke and the Womack. The Womack was prettier and finally came out of storage so it won. I did keep the pedal though 🙂

12. Vermont Wheel – LOVE. I heart this wheel. It is FAST. SMOOTH. SUPERB. It is a single treadle that I can use either foot with. Can spend many hours on this baby. Not a single complaint for this one. One of my two desert island wheels. She’s a production wheel so she gets the big spinning jobs, ie 3 lbs of black corrie, as well as perfection for fine spinning. I have a number of lace projects earmarked for her.

13. Schacht Matchless – LOVE. Single treadle. ST/DD. This is my utility player of a wheel. A little too heavy to make a fabo portable wheel (ie the purchase of the trundle kit). Many whorl options. WW and bobbins. This is my other desert island wheel.

Update 2012 – I sold the Single Treadle to Tami and bought a Double version.  With the injury to the other foot, I now prefer double treadle wheels over a large single treadle.

14. Majacraft Little Gem II- sold – Super portable. Did not agree with the bum ankle. I did like this one. A smaller footprint than the Suzie or Rose and different to work with. While Suzie doesn’t bother the ankle, Gem does.

15. Louet Victoria – sold – Never bonded with her. Another very portable wheel. Got an early one. Had trouble with the scotch tension knob actually staying put. The plastic cup that connects the treadles to the wheel made me nervous that it would snap. Having said that, I got her during the height of the construction period at the house and she stayed in the box for most of the time. I think I used her once.

16. Danish Flax Wheel – own/walkabout – Small Danish repro wheel that I bought on ebay during a flax phase 😉 Very tiny. Has been touring about on extended test drives, not entirely sure where she is at the moment. Will have a home at some point. Also a single treadle that gave me some fits and being a flax wheel, the ratio is very low. This lace spinner didn’t enjoy that very much 😉

17. Schacht Ladybug – LOVES. Though we’ll see how much loves there is when I take her out as the portable wheel 😉 I suspect she’ll do fine as long as I don’t have to schlep her very very far, like say from the Main Barn to the car at Maryland. As I haven’t flown since 1997, I don’t think her lack of foldability is going to cause a problem. –

Updated – this wheel is now SOLD. While I did love her and have absolutely no complaint about how she spun, she didn’t meet the true portability need. I need something that can tuck in the closet in the front cabin on the boat. Not folding is a problem there. Now I hear Schacht is working on a folding wheel…

Update: 2012 – Bought another Ladybug from Dorre for Alexander to use.

18. Ashford Joy – bought, haven’t gotten yet, will hopefully have soon. As noted above in the Majacraft Suzie Pro entry, I needed something small to take on the boat or where I need to carry a wheel a distance. Ladybug is an awesome little wheel, but I can’t carry her very far, though farther than I can carry the Matchless. Look for an update here when I’ve had a chance to play and tote. –

Updated – This wheel is now sold. I like it. It was okay. I’m just not a huge Ashford fan.

19. Reeves 24″ Saxony – I bought this oak beauty from Chris (who bought my Rose). I heart this wheel too. She’s gorgeous, fast and just an excellent spinner. I added a few newly made bobbins and use her for lace spinning. I know I didn’t need another saxony, what with the Vermont Wheel hanging about, but I couldn’t pass up a chance at an original Reeves at a friend price 🙂 –

Updated 4/2013 – Sold.  She wasn’t getting used and it was time to find someone who would appreciate her.

20. Van Eaton 24″ Production Wheel – in Black Walnut and 7 bobbins in various exotic woods. I LOVE this wheel. Heavy. Solid. Superb spinner. Both double and scotch tension like a bunch of other wheels that i have. I find it spins better in ST mode and that works for me. Updated:  7/2011 – this is the only wheel I can spin relatively heavy weight singles on.  I use this one when I’m spinning for a worsted weight end product.  Not seeing a great deal of usage at present, but won’t part with her.

Updated: 12/2012 – This wheel has been sold.  I hadn’t been using it very much and another wheel was on her way so she was sold and picked up at Rhinebeck in October.

21. Louet Victoria – No, you’re not seeing double. I did buy a new one. This time a beech one and with the problem of the tension knob that I noted on the earlier model addressed. With the screw holding the knob in from the other side, that popping problem is gone. I did find after a weekend of play with it, that the ring on the flyer arm slides a little to freely resulting in singles that pile up on the closer end of the bobbin. I solved this little problem by picking up a woolee winder at MDSW’09. We’ll see how she does on the boat this summer. I bought this to replace the Joy.

Updated:  7/11 – This was sold last year after I got another Gem (which itself was sold in May 11 to prepare for the arrival of the Sidekick) to use as the portable wheel.  It worked on the boat, being small and lightweight.  I just didn’t really like spinning on her for any length of time and would take another wheel if the spinning time was more than an hour or so.

22. Reeves 19″ Frame Wheel – LOVE – bought this from Carolina Homespun at MDSW’09 after sitting down to try it. Other than the creaking of the leather in the treadle, she’s almost perfectly silent. Wonderful spinning experience. Sadly, only came with one bobbin, but the flyer from the Saxony is the same size so they can be interchangeable. I have 5 bobbins now for that wheel so I can wait a bit to order a couple more.

Updated:  This too was sold.  I just never bonded with it.  It squeaked.  Was heavy.  And I just didn’t really need two Reeves wheels.

23.  CPW – marked Borduas 30″ Canadian Production Wheel – Purchased from Merlin Tree at MDSW in 2010.  Lovely fast wheel.  Sadly only one bobbin, means that the electric bobbin winder and cardboard storage bobbins gets a lot of usage.  I haven’t used it much in the last year.  The dry air in the house means that the joints are a tad wobbly.  Could use a bit of humidity in my house, but that’s another story.  I’m tempted to move her along, but can’t pull that trigger quite yet.  (actually went through 2 other CPW’s before getting to this one.  first was a franken-wheel from the midwest that I just up and gave to Dave Paul to get it off my hands, the other was a 24″ that was sold to Sharon) –

2/21/12 – This one is now moving along.  I’m fostering it for a couple of weeks until her new owner has room for her.  I just wasn’t using her and the herd was getting outsized again. 

24.  Schacht Sidekick – Added 7/11 – Hopefully this will be the portable wheel that I’ve been questing for.  She folds down pretty small (a tad heavier than the Victoria / Gem) but a very solid feel when spinning.  From my memories of the Ladybug, I find that the spinning is the same. –

2/21/12 – Sold – The spinning is nice but not at the higher speeds that I do.  I found the wheel wobbled a bit at my high treadle rate and got to be tiresome on my feet.  Could have been the carpet at Tami’s house but maybe not.  I also found the setup and breakdown to be a little longer than my ideal.

25.  Spinolution Queen Bee – Added 2/12 – So far so very good.  Picked this one up used on Ravelry.  Came with bag and 7 bobbins at a price I couldn’t pass up particularly for a wheel in excellent condition.  Setup and breakdown are incredibly fast as there’s only two steps one of which takes all of five seconds.  Huge range of ratios built in.  Still in midst of first 4oz of fiber on it, but so far, so very good.  Don’t want to jinx anything, but this might just be the grail in my quest for the perfect portable wheel.

8/2013 – Sold.  Just wasn’t getting any use.  Can’t remember why I turned away from it.  Maybe it was the odd treadling action.  While it didn’t bother my cranky right ankle, the left foot injury isn’t in the ankle, but mid-foot.  This foot was bothered by the treadling.

26.  Hansen MiniSpinner – Added 8/2012 – Have the regular flyer with 3 bobbins and the woolee winder flyer/bobbins.  Added a portable battery for use with this.  Maple.  Nice little spinner.  Spent the weekend at Wiawaka with it in August, and a weekend on the boat.  Has some ssues with the way I ply.  I tend to set it up and let the “wheel” do the work with the woolee winder.  This caused the motor to overheat and shut off.  Not sure how I feel about that 😉  The bobbins are HUGE!  Now to just figure out how to fill that bobbin without the motor overheating.

10/22/13 – Sold the Hansen to Jessalu at Rhinebeck this past weekend.  I couldn’t figure out the motor overheating problem and I wasn’t about to change how I ply with an electric to do so, particularly when i can use my Womack without issue.  It was just making me angry each time I used it so I moved it along.

27.  Golding Single Flyer Wheel – Added 10/2012 – LOVE.  Brilliantly designed wheel.  Sealed bearing on the bobbins.  No lubrication needed anywhere.  Quiet.  Solid.  Spins like buttah.

28.  Golding Folding Travel Wheel – Added 12/2012 – Love the full sized wheel so much that I had to have the portable. 🙂  Haven’t used it yet as it arrived today.  Has the same sealed bearing bobbins and quick on/off flyer.  Very smartly designed and with the carving, just gorgeous in cherry with walnut pulleys.  Folding function reminds me of the Lendrum Upright.

7/2013 – Sold – Was just not using this one and found the folding (while the same as the Lendrum) fidgety.  Was a bit bulky/heavy to use as a portable.

29.  Antique Gossip Wheel – Added 5/2013 – Picked this up at the used equipment auction in MDSW.  It is interesting.  Haven’t done much with it beyond the first day or two of oiling it up, putting on a drive band and spinning about 30 yards of very fine single.  Its a fast wheel.

Sold – can’t remember when

30.  Pocket Wheel – Added 7/2013 – sold 7/2013 – I waited over a year for a cherry pocket wheel, wanting to love it.  Sadly I didn’t.  The things I didn’t like about the Roadbug and the Hitchhiker are present in this gorgeous little direct drive wheel too, though a bit smoother operating, but also way more expensive.  I just didn’t enjoy spinning on it and thanks to a long wait list, was able to move it along very quickly.

31.  Norm Hall Traditional Whirlwind – Added 7/2013 – This is a beauty and one of the wheels on my bucket list.  5 HUGE bobbins, tilt tension, single treadle with 27″ drive wheel.  Signed 2-87 #36.

5/2014 – Traded for a Wyatt Pegasus

32.  Ashford Joy – Added 8/2013 – Yes, this is the third Joy I’ve bought.  Of all the travel wheels I’ve tried, this one was probably the best of breed.  I got the larger bobbins and freedom flyer with the sliding hook.  Except I think I just lost this one to Kathryn.  We came home from Rhinebeck and she excitedly starting spinning on her spindle, only to struggle with it.  I suggested that now that she had the spinning concept down, she should try a wheel.  She did and really did!  Doubt that its coming back to me anytime soon.  I do have to say that I’m not thrilled with the freedom flyer.  The sliding eye is too large and if you move it to the end of the arm to fill the back end of the bobbin, it catches on the brake band, which I also don’t like.  Dopey fishing line with two springs.. and a knob that wants to pop out.   I’ll have to fix that for Kat.

33.  Robin – Added 10/2013 – Wandering around the festival on Saturday with Kat, I spotted the Robins and asked if I could give one a try.  Never been a fan of bobbin lead, but kept an open mind.  I loved it.  Came home with a Black Walnut wheel with 3 standard bobbins.  So far, so good, but its only two days in.


34.  Wee Robin – Added 2013 – Nice little wheel.  Folded super small and went on a couple of cruises in a small hard sided suitcase.  Not a immense fan of Irish tension.

Sold 12/2015

35.  Majacraft Little Gem – Added 2013(?) – Actually the very same wheel I sold a few years back in 2011.  It was tricked out with the fast/lace bobbins/etc.  I used to keep this in the car until I traded the Camry in on something nicer 🙂

36.  Lendrum Upright – Added 5/2015 – Missed having a Lendrum and picked one up at MDSW.  Now that both ankles are crappy, they don’t notice the wheel treadling quite so much.  This time got the complete package with the Jumbo flyer.  Kat has claimed this wheel as hers.

37.  Golding Gossamer – Adding 10/2015 – A very nice little Golding wheel.  Spins smooth and is lighter than the previous style portable wheel.  Signed and number #1 🙂

xx.  Deposit put down on a Norm Hall Mariah in cherry at NYSW 2014.  Could have taken one home in 2015 but am scheduled to get it in 2016 provided I can scrape together the funds what with both twins needing braces and paying for a bar/bat mitzvah.

I think that’s it, and no I’m not including the charkhas (had an Indian – sold, have a Bosworth book sized). I’m sure someone who has been paying attention for a while around here can remind me of something I’ve missed 😉

Spin On!

[Edited 2008.5.21 to indicate the Gem has now been sold]

[Edited 2008.10.09 to indicate the Suzie Pro has now been sold and an Ashford Joy purchsed.]

[Edited 2009.05.04 to indicate purchase of the Reeves Saxony, Van Eaton, Reeves Frame, Louet Victoria. Also indicated sale of Ashford Joy, Lendrum upright, Schacht Ladybug.]

[Edited 2011.07.18 to update reviews / sales / purchases]

[Edited 2012.02.21 to update reviews / sales /purchases]

[Edited 2012.12.20 to update reviews / sales / purchases]

[Edited 2013.6.5 to update sales]

[Edited 2013.10.22 to update reviews / sales / purchases]

[Edited 2015.12.26 to update reviews / sales / purchases]

Tags: Spinning