Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Judith the spinning goddess

i have been wanting to post about my spinning weekend with spinning goddess Judith Mackenzie-(note the use of capitols!) since i got home. as usual life happens and i'm finally getting around to it! what can i say? as a spinner i was stuck in a rut and never got beyond beginner spinning- i always felt like i didn't have a clue to what i was doing or should be doing. i just sorta treadled along making the same damn yarn over and over and over.

i was blessed with the opportunity to attend a weekend workshop with Judith at dear sue's house. which is a wonderful experience in itself! thanks sue! bliss! your hospitality is awesome.

i have to admit i was a bit nervous about meeting Judith and taking the class as i felt rather incompetent. the workshop began with me almost killing the poor woman. great! off to a good start! my wheel was having squeaking issues. i was embarrassed to bring it sounding like a bunch of high pitched foxes hanging by their tails. i have tried everything-nothing worked. so i took some advice and got some dry lubricant silicone type spray. i was putting it on right before the workshop-let's put it this way....it's the ONE thing Judith is allergic to. very allergic. well, i felt terrible, horrible like a total a total ass.
sigh....heavy sigh. but- on another note my wheel didn't squeak once. Judith did give me advice for some tri-flo oil. gonna check it out!

(here's judith demonstrating spinning from a batt fresh from the drum carder!)

i could go on forever. i find it amazing how someone can dissect their art so much that they know many many levels, dimensions and depths. Her ease and knowledge of fiber and technique are astounding! a whole new world was open to me-endless possibilities. Judith is also a wonderful story teller. i could listen for hours. i learned much and forgot much, but i bought her latest book which reinforced what i learned. wow! i can do the long draw now-something i always thought was a deep sacred mystery that only the "special chosen" could do. this pic shows Judith long drawing some targhee. i love targhee!

i learned that navajo ply has nothing to do with the navajos, but a true 3 ply makes a great yarn. i learned worsted and woolen spinning methods. i spun silk, buffalo, ramie, hemp, linen, and yak(i want a yak soooo bad!) for the first time!! i learned how to make boucle!! OMG-i thought it had to be transpired from some weird machine!!!!!!!!!!!

i learned to use hand carders to make rolags with the use of a stick. liam and i found the perfect stick at the north fork of the yuba...unfortunately blue got a hold of it. it's chewed to bits now! here's my practice one. not totally straight but i was pleased..and to spin a long draw from it was fabulous!
For the first time i felt i was plying right...after Judith's teaching. here she is doing a fricken 5 ply!! blessed be!

i have more to tell you.....but i think i need to break this into 2 posts. i leave you with a pic of fellow guild member "missy." no workshop is complete without her presence dressed in pink with her chicken knitting bag!


soxchik said...

I am so not worthy. I cannot do half of those spinning functions. I just inchworm along.....So pathetic.

magnusmog said...

That sounds like such a wonderful way to learn some more about spinning :)