I spent the Saturday at Grandma's Spinning Wheel here in Tucson. I took 2 classes with Donna who is a wonderful teacher. If you have a chance to take any of Donna's classes consider yourself very lucky. The first class was all about dying fiber. We dyed every type of protein fiber a beginner needs to know. We did use acid dyes which are almost all off my hands today. We started off with adding a little color to a dark fiber with streaks of white in it. Then there were roving's, silks and yarn. With the yarn we did a dye over on an orange hank of yarn and had a blank hank of white yarn. Once everything is dry I will take some pictures.
While I had a terrific time and learned quite a bit, my fiber friends who dye my yarn and fiber need not worry. I don't think that I will be doing this at home any time soon. That being said I can't wait to see how it all spins and knits up.
After lunch I took the most wonderful class of the day. I learned how to comb fiber into top. I did not realize how much physical labor combing was and can now understand why in the English Guilds the skill was passed from father to son. I also learned to use a diz. So now I can properly play with my dizes. A thank you needs to go out to everyone who has sent me dizes knowing before I did how much fun they would be to play with. I do have a small bag of combed top fiber to spin and I cant wait. Since this is so much fun yet so physical for me I think I might have to limit myself to about an hour a day. I noticed that when I got tired my quality went way down.
Grandma's Spinning Wheel also has a large selection of classes, knit ins, spin ins, yarns, fibers, knitting and spinning supplies. For your first casual visit I would recommend planning to spend at least an hour in the store. If you are undecided which spindle or spinning wheel to get, buy a bit of fiber and take a floor model for a test spin. If they don't have what you want in stock just ask either Vicki or Michael to order it for you.
If you are not from Tucson here is all you need to know about Grandma's Spinning Wheel. It is located at 6544 E, Tanque Verde #150, Tucson Arizona 85715. All the other pertinent information can be found at www.grandmasspinningwheel.com.
This is my disclosure paragraph. John paid for my classes on Saturday and took care of Eric to boot. Isn't he wonderful? I did not get paid to write this blog. All opinions are my own. I did not ask permission from either Vicki or Michael the owners of Grandma's Spinning Wheel to write this blog post. So I hope that they do not ask for a take down.