Guess who got to spin on this wheel this weekend?
Yup! That’s right. This lady right here!
Yes, I’m still spinning on this little guy too.
I’ve had to change the cop shape to keep piling on the singles. Now, I can finish spinning the rest of the half I plan for this spin.
But, this weekend, I was a volunteer at the mill and I needed to demo a wheel. So, I took my Ashford Joy. But when I got there, I found that there was a wheel already there…and it was just too beautiful!
This is a repaired antique wheel that the mill just got back. Since we had an open house yesterday, I got to demo on it. Stacie, our site manager, is going to show me all of the dents where the years of wear are shown. There are even indentations in the wood from the fibers passing through the wheel as it was being spun! It boggles my mind to think of how many women must’ve sat to spin on this wheel to have produced those marks.
I spent the day with Carlie and Stacie. It’s a tough job keeping the mill alive with such a lack of historical professional volunteers in the area. But these ladies sure make the place look good! We talked a lot about the mill’s history and our ideas about how to keep it running. We find we have a great many ideas without the volunteer help to make it happen, at times.
We also talked about slowing down and enjoying life amidst the struggles life inevitably brings.
Stacie is a knitter and has been working on a hat.
This is probably one of those rare times she actually gets a few minutes to work that pattern. Non-profits are pretty busy!
In between time, when I wasn’t spinning on the antique wheel, I spun on my own wheel.
I love these colors! And I love this wheel too. I can get way faster more comfortably on my wheel than the antique wheel. There was a volunteer there, however, who explained that years ago, the pace was so much slower in spinning that women would just fall asleep at the wheel…the spinning and treadling was in pace with the heartbeat. When a child was restless, you could put the child on your lap while spinning, and within minutes, the tired, little thing would be fast asleep. I thought that was fascinating! I imagine these kinds of stories about what women did are probably passed by word-of-mouth more than any other method. Women weren’t high priorities once upon a time, so those stories probably weren’t important to document. These days, women are better about making themselves priorities though. That’s a good thing. Taking the time to give back to ourselves is important for us and our families.
But, I have to admit, there’s still a part of me that wants to see my yarn now! There’s only so much slow I can endure, I guess. 🙂
Finding the places where history and the present collide is always interesting…
Then, too, finding that some things never change is still so comforting.
When we get together, women will talk.