A few days ago, I was delighted to find this wonderful gift in the post. My friend Agathi the weaver, from Corfu, sent me this beautiful spindle. It is like the one that her mother used to spin fine yarns on. Agathis asked her son Mario to make it for me.
This is such a simple design, yet very functional and effective. I haven’t spun on this type of spindle before, so did a bit of how-to research.
YOUTUBE – Traditional Hand Weaving
A fascinating video of how to spin on a Greek or Russian style spindle. Rather than the method we are familiar with, of supporting the spindle on your lap or in a bowl, she holds the spindle off to the side of her lap as she spins.
(Start the video at about 2 minutes)
She holds the spindle at the top and twirls it in her fingers. The twist travels up the yarn to where she pinches the fibre that has been drafted. As the spin in the yarn builds up, she then winds the spun wool onto the spindle.
The video continues on to show a warping method of winding the warp onto pegs in the lawn.
I think it will take me a bit of practice before I can spin using this method, but am finding that supporting the spindle in a small bowl on my lap is quite easy to do. I think it would be lovely to also own a small bowl made of olive wood, to support the spindle. I must buy one when I next visit Corfu.
I started the spinning by attaching a leader thread of already pre-spun wool yarn to the base of the spindle. My spinning was quite thick, lumpy, bumpy at first, but with a bit of practice, it is getting better.
If you would like to own one of these spindles too – I am sure that her son Mario would be happy to make one for you.
Agathi doesn’t have a website, but you can contact her by snail mail or by phone.
Agathis Handmade Lace and Handcrafted Olivewood
phone: 26630 81315