tisdag 26 oktober 2010

The workhouse

Maria has taught me nearly everything I know about textiles, or at least most of it. She has provided a wealth of tips and pointers on hand spinning with a spindle, but in this particular art I've been instructed by two other women who have shown me the ropes. Darling Kerstin might be the one carrying the greatest responsibility after a few patient hours in Oslo, but the first person to show me was actually my mother.

It feels nice to kno that my mother taught me how to spin - in the same way it is nice that she's the one who taught me to recognize almost all the plants I know (except for the ones that grandma and grandpa taught me). Some tricks are so very, very old - and it's rather nice that they are still taught from parent to child, from the old to the young, even if it's hysterically funny that it sometimes has to happen in the vegetable section at the supermarket. ("No, that there is a turnip...")

I've had no time to play with my spindle for a long time, but one night last week, something weird happened. I was at the computer hewing through some texts, when I suddenly saw, in my (desperately bored) mind's eye, pictured myself drawing out a long bit of wool and twist it into even yarn. I shuffled to the floor and tried it, and it suddenly came out much better than a few months ago. It didn't meet the standard of my hallucination, but it was good enough. I don't know if the brain sometimes need these prolonged processing intervals, it seems to work rather slow at times, and then the mental recoil brings unexpected effects.

The tetris devil got hold of me, and it was well past midnight before I could bring myself to stop. By then I'd been standing up for several hours, spinning while semi-watching the second half of  Machete - a movie that's stupid enough to be ignored when the crafting calls for it, and violent enough to keep you awake. I have two insanely greasy balls of yarn that look more like regurgitated porridge, a two-ply which, I must admit, consists partly of what Sarah made in Varberg - it was part of the cop already, so it provides a neat base to the "effects yarn" in the other thread (full of slubs) which I've made myself. It just might be enough for a pair of socks.

I'm longing for the next batch! Not least because wool gives you less bruises than steel. I'm reading a book right now which takes place in an absolutely miserable 9th century, where all the little girls spin the whole time. If they don't make enough yarn before the end of the year they get punished. I also read somewhere that if you ended up in the workhouse in Stockholm in the old days, you had to stay until you had produced a certain yardage, determined by the gravity of your sins. So you had to be really fast with the spindle to be able to get back out quickly! Fancy that.

4 kommentarer:

  1. Stå på en stol så kommer du ut fortare och hinner synda mera. Ska jag skicka mer ull? /lisa

  2. Åh darling, jag har än så länge bara skrapat på ytan - det är hårt packat i ica-kassarna! Men jag funderar på att köpa av er en binge när jag kommer upp härnäst, inte för att jag kommer att ha hunnit klart det jag redan har, men det skadar inte att ha ett lager...

  3. Oviktigt vetande: Här i Norrköping inrättade vi tidigt spinnhus för stadens lösdrivande, arbetslösa och hysteriska kvinnor. De skulle förse vantmakeriet med tråd till arméns klädesindustri. Idag är det "vanligt" fängelse i samma hus.

    Kul att du är igång med spinnandet.

  4. Jag vill också spinna! Har inte gjort det sen Varberg r/t brist på ull, och det faktum att min slända är begravd i någon låda på vinden. Suck, alla dessa projekt som väntar på mig...