Dear Spinner Pushers

Dear Spinning Pushers (aka: Wendy, L-B, Alice and Julie),
I feel it is necessary to write and tell you that I do not appreciate being introduced to spinning last weekend at Graves Mountain. I have very consciously resisted learning to spin for the following reasons:

1. I do not have time for another activity.
2. I do not have money for another activity.
3. I do not have space for roving stash.
4. I do not feel a need to make my own yarn.
5. I am perfectly content with knitting.

Since learning to spin last weekend (and you all know that I am totally pretending that I “learned” -we all know how much farther I need to progress to really make that statement true), I have done the following things:

1. Bought a drop spindle. (Despite the fact that I didn’t even particularly care for the spindle method. Somehow the beauty of drop spindles caught my eye.)
2. Bought roving. (Oh, not one. But several. FPS.)
3. Read a bunch of stuff about wheels, trying to figure out which one I need. (“need”)
4. Contemplated carrying roving at The Loopy Ewe. (Not that we have the shelf space for it.)
5. Had this conversation with my mom and husband:

Mom: “Have you thought of anything on your Christmas list?”
Sheri: “No, not really. I’ll have to think about it.”
Mom: “How about some money to put towards a spinning wheel?”
Sheri: “Oh, I’ll have one before then.”
Wonder Husband: “Ha! Of course there is no waiting on something like that when she gets it in her head.” (Yes, as a matter of fact we HAVE been married for over 20 years – why do you ask?)

So, you see, Spinning Pushers, you have pulled me into something completely against my will, which obviously is not good for me, and obviously has taken a serious hold on me. I should never have made the trip. I should never have watched you all spin and contemplated the peace and serenity of it all. I should never have picked up that roving and spindle. Now look at the mess I’m in. Sigh.

Sincerely,Sheri IknowyouwillblamemeandsayIwantedtolearn,


  1. Be glad you can assign blame. I can’t blame anyone but myself. Taught myself to spin. Don’t even know any spinners (aside from random people at the LYS and other yarn shops I’ve been to). Have only seen two other people spin aside from internet videos. So. Yeah.

    I also blame sheep. Because they are the potatoes of the animal kingdom. As in have a million different uses, are fluffy, round, and taste good. And they are cute! Resistance is futile. All our base are belong to wool.

  2. I find fault in several of your statements:

    1. I do not have time for another activity. HA! You don’t really need to sleep now do you???

    2. I do not have money for another activity. If you add roving etc.. to TLE this will all be a business expense and tax deduction…..

    3. I do not have space for roving stash. What about the space you just emptied moving the Loopy Room?

    4. I do not feel a need to make my own yarn. False. I saw how you coveted the handspun yarn Julie was working on!!!

    5. I am perfectly content with knitting. False again or you would never have begged to learn to spin last weekend.

    The real problem with all of this is you know that I will follow in your footsteps….. Just let me know what wheel to order…..

  3. Hooray for new spinners! I resisted the spinning siren for many years as well, but in the end I was powerless. Maybe I shouldn’t admit this, but I never really bothered with a spindle–just went straight for a wheel and never looked back. Finding room for the fiber stash has been an adventure in itself, but I sure am having fun!

  4. What a dilemma you have?! So glad not to have this issue myself. Wait, I really want to quilt – which means a fabric stash…and purchasing a sewing machine…yep, I might just have myself a similar problem, lol… : )

  5. A spinning wheel is a necessity. In order to fully appreciate that which you sell, you really must know how it is made. To fully appreciate how it is made, you must learn to make it yourself. Perfectly logical, in my book. Besides, spinning is better than a therapist. Cheaper, too.

  6. Oh, Sheri. We all know you wanted too, no matter how much you say you didn’t.

    I’d love to see somebody do a drop spindle. I’ve seen a woman spin on a wheel at a fair, but that’s it.

  7. I find watching spinning totally mezmorizing. I could sit and watch for hours while my mom would spin. I think one of my non spinning, but fellow fiber loving sisters got her wheel when she passed away, I would love to have one of those nice compact ones that are easily hidden, Not That “I” would keep such a thing HIDDEN. : ) But I think it will be (I mean it would be ) so fun to learn to spin. I may ask for a drop spindle and lessens from Sheep Street for Christmas.

  8. Hmmm . . . I would have sworn that just a few months ago, standing in what was formerly the Loopy Room, you and Jackie talked me out of buying a spinning wheel because I wouldn’t have time to knit anymore. Oh wait . . . It WAS just a few months ago you guys talked me out of buying a spinning wheel. Do Jackie and I need to come over there and perform an intervention????

  9. this is just so funny, Sheri — I bought a drop spindle/roving last Thursday, and have been researching wheels, too!! Course, I didn’t have anyone in person to teach me, so I have nothing like your wonderful first attempt!!!

    As IF I needed another hobby. oiy. ha ha!!

  10. Honestly I have no words of sympathy for you. I do have the following statement:
    “roving is fluffy”
    Now yarn, for all it’s wonders, especially the solid yarns I often work with, can hardly be called fluffy, especially when compared with roving. And there’s this sparkily roving, of which I have several ounces, so it’s both fluffy and sparkily. And then it turns into yarn!
    Ok, so I’m totally like 8, but at the ripe mental age of 8 I was pretty much sold on fluffy. 😉

  11. Oh boy! Here you go! And Miss Violet was just saying on the podcast of two weeks ago (recorded waaaay before that) how fantastic it would be if TLE started carrying roving!! I’ve just become a spinner myself (why, oh why?…you’ve been keeping me well stocked in sock yarn!) with the fortuitous purchase of a used Ashford Traditional. I begin my lessons next week, but in the meantime am very much enjoying Shannon Okey’s “Spin to Knit.” A great resource! Enjoy Sheri!

  12. Oh, I read your post with great fear and trepidation. I have begun to seriously read the posts of people talking about their spinning, podcasts where spinning keeps being brought up and yes, I bought the Teach Yourself Visually Handspinning book. I fear I am heading down the path you have just begun. Fortunately, I don’t have spinning friends so that is my only saving grace so far. Good luck with your new addiction!

  13. 🙂 I always felt like my approach to spinning was like approaching the edge of the abyss…

    Happy hunting on the wheel front!

  14. Hehehe! I’m loving reading this!! My friends too taught me the wheel a few weeks ago and tried to get me to buy a wheel…I just got roving instead…for now! 😉

  15. Good luck resisting the spinning addiction. 😛 I blame mine on Jacki. And the second wheel so we could both spin at the same time. Oh and the need for a much bigger fiber stash. 🙂

  16. Why not sell roving, too? Then you’ll have to, just have to, try it all. You do have that lovely new space to fill……..

  17. Well just in case you need some feedback on carrying roving – YES!! Many of your indie yarn sources also dye fibers! And roving can be squished down – you have to pre draft (fluff) fiber prior to spinning anyway. Oh, may as well have a few nice spindles to go w. the fiber….Seriously, I really would love to buy roving from you.

  18. No spinning! no fiber! no, no, no. I will resist learning how to spin. I will.
    When in holy hell would I do it? I’m resisting. I really am.

  19. I HAD A YARN SHOPPING/SPINNING LEARNING EXPERIENCE THIS WEEKEND TOO!!!!! So far I’m still trying to figure it all out though… 🙂 Glad you’re finding new things!!!!

  20. (ps… I meant the finding new things comment in a good way, as in, isn’t it fun to try new things?! 🙂 I just re-read it and thought it sounded wrong 🙂

  21. Hi Sheri, I have to agree with Beth…it doesn’t stop with one wheel. I bought my first wheel Sept. 16, an Ashford Joy. I signed up for classes and at the last class in October, I bought a 2nd wheel – a Louet S10 that will arrive in a few weeks. Then for support I joined a newly formed spinning guild in our area. Let me know which wheel you (and Janice 🙂 ) buy. Happy spinning 🙂

  22. What do spinning wheels and poison ivy appear to have in common? To the best of my knowledge, I’m immune to both. Yes, I’ve fondled raw fiber. I think it’s pretty. Spinning wheels? I think they’re beautiful marvels of engineering. But even after playing with a drum carder, I just don’t feel the siren song. (and in my kid-hood, I clearly remember several instances where my running buddies wound up itchy and I was fine, despite the fact that we traveled identical paths through the woods)

    Now we all just need to continue to keep me away from the weavers. I DEFINITELY could get sucked in by that!

  23. 4. Contemplated carrying roving at The Loopy Ewe. (Not that we have the shelf space for it.)

    Oh, we can dream. Watch me dream. I’ll have my wheel in January, and I’m going to need roving to go with it. Lots and lots of roving.

  24. No! No spinning for me! My free time is sucked up with dye! I love handspun, very very much, but me? Spin it? Meh. Taking crocheting classes, the dyeing, and the knitting was plenty funtastic this past couple months….. no. No no no no.

    I said no. 🙂

    Crocheting at least is bad enough. Right?

    So. Will you be selling your handspun? 😉

  25. It would be awesome if TLE carried roving! I am a newbie spinner as well, and I just bought a Lendrum DT. Can’t wait to see which wheel you bring home!

  26. I will happily take the blame. 😉

    If you carry anyone’s roving, I totally recommend Funky Carolina, she’s my fave.

  27. Somehow I get the impression that it’s already too late. Just order the wheel and the roving already…!

  28. Once you get the wheel you’ll realize you need another wheel that’s portable. And then you’ll want to learn to dye wool. It’s a never-ending addictive process! You might as well enjoy it! : )

    I have a traditional Ashford. It’s a good beginning wheel.

  29. Congrats on learning to spin, Sheri! I have two spindles and a pound of roving that have been happily sitting on my shelf for a year…I just haven’t had the time to sit down and learn! One of these days, though, I will have to take time, I guess…

  30. Welcome to the fold! I too resisted spinning for many years. I had cleverly (I thought) divided my “fiber” time so that I did needle work only at work during my lunch hour; knitting only when watching TV; weaving only on week-ends. Then I reluctantly “tried” spinning at the MD Sheep & Wool festival. I resisted as best I could, but alas, as someone in an earlier comment said, “Resistance is futile!”
    My wheel –a Schacht Matchless– arrived in May, and I’m loving it, and you will too!
    I can’t wait to see the fantastic roving TLE will carry!!!

  31. I have a dear friend that has been trying to get me to spin for years. I have resisted. Won’t even touch the wheel. I went to a fiber get together and even tried it on a wheel, and was, amazingly , pretty good at first try. I have resisted. refused to sign up for a class at a location minutes from home. I even have an old x5 generations wheel that is fully functional. I have resisted. I was told that it is really a flax wheel but that it would work just fine. Now you, too, tell me that it is really fun and relaxing and mesmerizing and that you will soon be arrying the stuff that I would need to move into this new area. I am still trying to resist but the resistance is getting weaker and weaker. When the fluffy stuff shows up on the web site, then what am I to do?? ARGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH.

  32. This id precisely why I’ve been resisting the urge to learn how to spin. Who has the money or time for another *ahem* healthy obsession?

  33. Y’know, I’m not kidding about coming up here to visit The Fold. 🙂 She’s got just about every wheel under the sun there, and she’ll happily let you try them all out before buying, and she’s also got HUGE sacks of roving everywhere you look. Camel, alpaca, every breed of sheep known to man, loads of gorgeous blends…she even has Blue Moon Fiber Arts roving. :-O I’ll even bake a maple sugar pumpkin pie for ya, Sheri. 😉 And, I agree with the above poster who mentioned the lack of space issue…omg, woman, you just moved an entire YARN SHOP out of your basement! Seems to me, you must have LOADS of space down there now! Space is a flimsy, pale excuse at best. You *know* you’re going to get a wheel.

    *Embrace the wheeeel…*

  34. I bought a drop spindle at Rhinebeck, and immediately after returning how, for some reason, I decided I needed to learn how to sew. I’m torn. Right now, I’m looking at new sewing machines to replace my beginner’s model. Spin? Sew? Not one, but TWO new hobbies. Right now, sewing has gotten top billing (to the dismay of my knitting, even – GASP), but that gleaming drop spindle and soft, colorful roving I have waiting for me to practice on? GAH! There aren’t enough hours in the day, money in the bank account, or space in the house for THIS!

    Help help!

    I feel your “pain”. 😉

  35. Really, it is essential to you from a business perspective to understand everything about yarn. Therefore this is not merely another hobby or art. It is a BUSINESS INVESTMENT!!

    I, for example, own 6 or 7 business investments. It’s essential for me to know why yarn is what it is and does what it does. Oh, and the marvelously relaxing feeling of watching roving slip through my fingers and become yarn? Or the smell of a fresh fleece, neatly skirted, waiting to be carded and spun up? The amazing peace and centering that comes from spinning? That’s all just icing.

  36. If you start carrying roving I’ll have to finally buy a wheel too! I have a spindle, but I just can’t get the hang of it as easily as I did the wheel.

  37. I agree w/everything that everyone says about how you will get “sucked in,” buying spindles, wheels, roving, and the space it will all take up and the time that you’ll pull from other things to do this.
    But it is one of the most soothing, satisfying activities I’ve ever taken up, and I think that if, at the end, I threw all the hand-made yarn out, I would still continue with it.
    The fact that I actually get usable yarn is a bonus!
    If you have stress in your days, you need to do this in your evenings.

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