Spinning wheel drive bands

Glitter drive bandWe loved Jan H’s glitter drive band on her electric spinner. It was really fun. You can try different twines and yarns on your spinning wheel to see which ones work the best. Stretchy bands are popular but you have to be confident attaching them to get the rubber to glue together. They do not always adjust with the same precision as a string band but they provide a reliable band for lots of the same sort of yarn or bulkier yarns. You can see how evenly  Jan’s glitter band is spinning. You can use cotton yarn, string, some jewellery twine, builder’s line. Pays to play around sometimes to get the right drive band for your purposes and a little bit of superglue on the knot will stop it coming adrift. The video gives you sensible advice for fitting drive bands and some ideas as to what to use. A good drive band will make a difference and you need to replace them , especially if you are using your wheel a lot. The other thing you might need as a beginner are a few tips about getting your wheel to behave itself. Bluprint has a few usefuls tips.

Colour your life


We really are lucky to be surrounded by colour and it is always interesting to watch people lay out their colours, to see how they have prepared them for spinning and then to watch those colours turn into a spool of yarn which is  plied and ready to go. Sometimes it is for sale. Sometimes it is for that special project . Sometimes it is on commission or as a request. We love colour and we love spinning.  Sometimes it’s just because. Because we love that colour. Because we want to make that wool batt. Because we need a break from spinning one colour for a big project. Look at all these colours. Some of them have been spun with a special purpose in mind. Others turn up in projects the person didn’t know they were going to make until they did! What would you do with these colours? Would you put any of them together or have you got something at home they would go with. Thinking about colours and where they fit in your life is how you keep yourself inspired and creative.

Equipment Day

What a stark contrast yesterday was to the day before. On Thursday it had been 42 degrees with catastrophic heat conditions forecast and then, when we were waiting for the bus Friday morning, the ocean had massive waves and it was blowing a really cold wind. We were so glad to get on the bus. Undeterred, we talked all the way up to the Adelaide Hills’ group Equipment Day in Littlehampton, we talked all our way around the venue, all our way to The Felting Ewe at Lenswood, all our way around the She Cave and then all our way back home on the bus. We love a good yarn!

We were warmly welcomed to the Adelaide Hills’ group and we spent a lovely time mixing with all the fibre people and looking at what was there. We were offered a nice morning tea and a beautiful lunch. We came away with books and magazines, bags of fibre, wool tops and bags of fleece and crochet hooks! It was an extremely sociable event where everyone was happy to share their skills and knowledge in a friendly way.

At the Felting Ewe we could see how much time and effort had gone into the impressive gardens and then we enjoyed looking at the feast of colours and fibres in the She Cave. We loved the colours and then the examples of Brenda’s felting. It was such a lovely place to be and we bought wool tops, silks, bits for needle felting and bits for the  tiny Eel spinning wheels.

Everyone was happy and it was a good way to get away from the feeling of the oppressive heat the day before. We can’t wait to see what everyone makes with their purchases.

We love spinning

We do. We do love spinning and the wheels and looms never stop. The colours encourage and inspire us and we just love that rhythm of the wheels. We like to make wool batts and spin those but we like the colourways of tops and then we have been interested in experimenting with different fibres. Mostly it is merino and alpaca in our group but we’ll try dog hair, camel, cotton , plant fibres and rare breeds. We do it to see and then we do it because each fibre feels different. The colours can be outrageously bold or very soft and subtle. Sometimes it is just natural fleece colours and other times we like to play with natural and chemical dyes to see what happens. Our wheels are all different too. Some members are more than happy with their electric wheels and others like to play with their manual wheels. Electric wheels are obviously more transportable because of the size. The latest passion for some of the members, thanks to Christine, are the little 3D printed Eel Wheels. You need to be patient setting them up but they really are a bonus for quick and easy small scale spinning.