My first priority at NYS Sheep & Wool Festival this morning was to get a spindle. So I wandered off to The Journey Wheel booth where I listened in as Sylvia Bosworth gave another prospective spinner a brief lesson and then had my own lesson before departing, drop spindle in hand and a big smile on my face. That first mini-lesson was a revelation. When Sylvia held the roving and let me pull down the thread as it twisted I could feel the twist, feel it becoming yarn in my hand. It was such a remarkable thing and I was hooked right then. A big smile came across my face and I couldn't wait to spin more.
Of course it was easy with an experienced spinner controlling everything. When I tried to do the same thing on my own all I managed to create was a lumpy bumpy mess. I remain undeterred however. I would love to try tonight, I find myself suddenly eager to learn to spin, but I realize that I am exhausted and my efforts will come to naught. In fact I suspect it will be a while before my spinning efforts yield anything worthwhile. It seems to be a greater mystery the further I get from this morning's mini-lesson. But I met an old acquaintance and have an invitation to the local spinning guild, so perhaps there is hope.
The gray and red is my practice roving. Purchased after advice from Sylvia as to what kinds of fibers might be forgiving of beginner ineptitude. I figured it might as well aspire to producing something pretty.
After the spindle purchase I found myself at loose ends for a brief bit, before the Thursday knitters arrived. It turned out to be a fun and interesting day and I did do my part to help support yarn and fiber vendors. But more about that another time.
Gina egged me on in at least one purchase, and since the resulting yarn will be for a relatively fast, large-gauge knit, it will be appearing soon, probably sooner than the purchase made yesterday, which has suddenly been bumped further down the line. Gina also introduced me to Juno and Stephanie and I managed to speak without embarrassing myself or Gina (oh good she can take me out in public). Stephanie proceeded to pick up some roving and tiny spindle and spin, completely effortlessly it seemed, the most amazing, fine strand, a thread practically, and I practically fell at her feet drooling in awe. I managed to remain upright, and lucky me, since I still have my own teeth, I managed not to drop those as well. Now I want to be Stephanie when I grow up.
By the end of the day, I was dragging along in a state of total exhaustion, my hands fondling fibers, my eyes easily drawn to any bright colorful bit of yarn or fiber. I had that wide-eyed look of a deer caught in the head-lights, or a two-year-old who is completely exhausted but too wired to take a nap. I was completely pale and wan from pure overstimulation. But it was a marvelous day.
I haven't absorbed it all yet. That might take me a few days.
But if the weather holds, the concrete pour might take place this week, I have yet to finish closing out the fiscal year at work, and I have houseguests arriving on Wednesday (along with the concrete) so there is much to do and little time for fondling of fiber.