Hello everyone, I'm Annie LaForge, your host for The Woolery Spin Along, which officially kicks off today! I thought I would give you a little bit of my spinning background before we dive into Week One of the Spin Along. I started working at the Woolery 4 years ago, after moving to Kentucky from New Jersey. I had been knitting for years and had just become a Certified Knitting Teacher with the Yarn Council at FIT in NYC. I tried to teach myself how to spin a few years earlier and was unsuccessful, but when I started working at the Woolery, Nancy Reid (the Woolery's resident spinning teacher), took me under her wing and got me going.
I was instantly hooked and within a couple months of using a drop spindle I bought my very own wheel, a Schacht Ladybug. I have been spinning ever since! My main goal was to create yarns I could knit and weave with, but without practicing my consistency this became hard and I wound up with a lot of “tapestry yarn” or “art yarn”. I just spun to spin for the next year and attempted to spin my own yarn for a sweater, I didn’t know how to be consistent when I was spinning the yarn and it was definitely all over the place and the sweater was...funky. One sleeve was bigger than the other and the body of the sweater changed drastically over the piece. This was slightly disappointing, but it didn’t make me focus on consistency, I kind of just gave in to the idea that I wouldn't have consistent yarn.
I stayed in this same spinning routine and have not really tried to push myself. I feel like I talk to a lot of people who feel the same - love spinning, but don't use their handspun in projects. This spin along is a chance for spinners who are a step up from a beginner to start honing your consistency skills and be able to create yarns based off a yarn size in a pattern. We have mentioned that this is not an instructional class, but I will be right alongside everyone also learning what it takes to make consistent yarn. We will be posting videos, and I will be making blog posts about my journey through this spin along and we encourage everyone else to do the same!
The Woolery Spin Along Week 1 - Practice Makes Perfect
If you haven't already, now would be a great time to download The Woolery Spin Along Info Packet and give it a read. Do not put too much stress on yourself this week, focus on getting comfortable behind the wheel (or spindle!) with whatever size yarn you want!
I learned in this step that my default single spinning weight is fingering weight, so I found it easier to start there and then move on to heavier weights. I also found it helpful to set a timer for 5 min while spinning to continually check my gauge with my Precision Spinning Card (PSC for short). You could also check every other song if you are listening to music.
Dani and I had a great conversation about the different ways that we personally try to be more consistent in our spinning and recorded it for you all to watch. We'd love to hear about your personal tips and tricks as well!
You will hear us say this a lot during the next 8 weeks, but don’t forget to stretch! Be aware of your posture while you are spinning as well!
Week 1 Roadmap:
Thank you for joining the first ever Woolery Spin Along and we hope to have a fun 8 weeks!