Thanks to Mabel Ross
Mabel Ross may no longer be the only or the last word on spinning, but we all owe her a great debt of gratitude. The mother of modern spinning techniques, Mabel’s scholarship and technical ability provided the foundations of the diverse spinning skills we enjoy today. After graduating from Edinburgh University in 1934, Mabel worked in meteorological research and later taught mathematics and music. According to a biography compiled by the National Library of Scotland, she learned to weave and spin after her retirement. After her husband’s death in 1978, she began to teach weaving and spinning and developed her precise method of handspinning, matching twist to fiber and grist, based on historical research and her own spinning experiments. Her first book, The Essentials of Handspinning, was published in 1980. At the time of her death in 1995, she was an internationally known lecturer and teacher of weaving and spinning.