Spin Off Loves Spinning Tools (Old and New)

I still feel a little guilty about buying a second spinning wheel. I know to some spinners that sounds decadent, and for others it’s an absolutely amateur-level spinning-wheel collection. The right spinning tools make the job more pleasant, even if the job is just to enjoy your spinning.

Some people love to say that you can spin yarn with nothing more than a spindle. Others go further and say you just need a rock and a stick; for the truly minimalist, there’s thigh-spinning. Although that’s technically true, I don’t personally know anyone who makes yarn on a stick or a body part as a regular practice. I didn’t need a second wheel, but having a portable, finely adjustable one in addition to my versatile, easy-care one has made my spinning life nicer.

If you already have a wheel, why bother with our Spinning Wheel Roundup? Among the listings you may find a new manufacturer or a configuration you hadn’t seen before. The buyer’s guide will help you understand a wheel you already have, and new listings for e-spinners and charkhas shed some light on those increasingly popular wheels (if we can call them wheels). And as my mother always says when the dessert tray comes by, “It can’t hurt to look.”

Alongside features on brand-new spinning wheels, articles in this issue also remind us how useful pre-loved vintage wheels can be. Some antiques include features we thought were new, and others can still churn out fine yarn at an incredible pace.

spinning tools

Devin Helmen celebrates the satisfaction of a spinning practice focused on useful yarn. Illustration by Ann Sabin Swanson

Spinning tools, like spinning trends, come around again, ready to be discovered anew by spinners with fresh eyes. Magazines also need a fresh perspective. It’s time for a new vision to guide Spin Off, and our next issue will introduce a new editor. I’m not going far—I’ll be working with all of Interweave’s yarn and fiber crafts—and I can’t wait to see where Spin Off goes next.

Spin happy,

Anne Merrow
[email protected]

Featured Image: Look at the ancient distaff with a fresh eye in “The Surprising Stick” by Kim Caulfield. Photo by George Boe

Discover Spinning Wheels and More in Spin Off!

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