We welcomed Amanda Hannaford to the shed for a day of spinning for beginners recently and what a great day was had by all!

Amanda took us through each step of the process and by the end everyone was competently carding and spinning their own yarn.

You’ll notice in the pictures, the big basket of prepared fleece that Amanda brought with her. She did describe the process of cleaning a fleece as someone has a very precious fleece of their own they want to spin. This was used to card the perfect rolag with all the fibres in alignment for spinning. 

Amanda demonstrates carding fleece

The group spindle spinning

Spindle spinning rolags

During the workshop the new spinners tried both spinning with a drop spindle and with a spinning wheel. Amanda brought some perfect handmade drop spindles, that can easily be repaired if dropped – these she uses on her walks, so that she can keep spinning while she exercises! We might have to ask Amanda to guide a spinning walk for us in the future as that sounds really appealing! 

Using a spinning wheel has a certain knack to it as you have to keep the wheel and fleece spinning at the same time, but everyone mastered it and then plying the yarn to make a stable, usable yarn, as opposed to the ‘knicker elastic’ I was creating when I had a go! That said both Liz and I were inspired to go home with some spare fleece to practice with and we have been happily making rolags in the evenings.

Since the workshop I have heard that one new spinner has bought themselves a wheel and all agreed that Amand explained the process so well, that they not only understood how to complete each step, but understood why as well, which I always thinks helps me not only remember, but gives me confidence in trying the next step of a process.

We are working on another beginner spinning workshop with Amanda for February, email us at hello@theloomshed.com and we’ll let you know when tickets are on sale.

One of the wheels Amanda brought to the workshop

Amanda at her spinning wheel


Yarn spun and plied in the workshop