How I learned to handspin: tools and techniques

Screenshot of Sarah from video on learning to handspin
Click to watch the video!

My journey with learning to handspin yarn by hand started as many such tales do: I took a class and learned the basics of spindle spinning. It was a useful way to begin, but the potential speed and efficiency of using a spinning wheel was a big lure.

Unfortunately, my first wheel and I never seemed to click, and for a couple of years, spinning on the wheel was an unenjoyable struggle resulting in yarn I wasn’t particularly happy with.

Eventually, after trying a couple of different models of Schacht wheels, I finally found one that felt natural and easy for me to work on – the wheel I’d been waiting for! Now I enjoy spinning and have made several batches of hand-spun yarn.

As I learn more I’ve come across a couple of books that have a lot of great information if you want to try creating different styles of yarn. Yarnitecture: A Knitter’s Guide to Spinning by Jillian Moreno and The Spinner’s Book of Yarn Designs: Techniques for Creating 80 Yarns by Sarah Anderson.

If you’re interested in starting with a hand spindle, check out these two videos:
Make a drop spindle out of CDs
Basic drop spindle tutorial.

Published by Sarah Scully

Sarah is a librarian as well as an avid knitter and occasional knitwear designer. She also enjoys cooking, gardening, hiking, reading, painting, and writing with fountain pens.