Friday, June 27, 2008

Retreat and Winding Down

There was spinning and fiber, two pounds of Polwarth sorted into colors in this case. I think Lindsey has plenty to keep her busy for more than the week. She asked Sara if she would show us how to spin silk. It turned out that Lindsey and I were *us* so I dragged my stuff over for some spinning instruction. Sara spins silk for hours so has developed a long-draw technique that doesn't have any of the pinching or long-draw pull that I do. She draws the fiber from side-to-side. She lets the wheel draw the fiber out and uses her open palm to direct the twist. I know I can't describe it and I neglected to catch a picture of her doing it.

I wasn't able to manage with my palm but did finally get something to work, using my vertical fingers to bend the fiber in a right angle and parallel to the wheel. I'm still practicing but I'm much better than when I started. Amy brought me 2 ounces of Chasing Rainbows silk back from Black Sheep Gathering last year. I spun it up, with the second ball turning out better than the first. Go figure.
And there was weaving. Gayle cut off this silk and cotton cloth, 5 1/2 yards of it, which she will send to her tailor in Mexico. I wish I had a tailor. I wish I wove cloth!

Here's a little better detail. It doesn't look like much from a distance but it is gorgeous.

Marilyn Greaves, a tapestry weaver and instructor from Sacramento, was able to join us for the last day. She informed us that she's retiring next year so will finally be able to travel out of the Sacramento area to teach classes. I hope we'll be able to get her here in Reno.

Isn't this great color?? It's Sara's, but of course. These are the yarns that she's using in her samples for the book. I'm almost done with Virginia City, I promise. Gayle invited a Turkish rug trader to show us his rugs on Sunday morning, and I think some of the pictures are really worth sharing, but later.


Michelle at Boulderneigh said...

You don't have to be done with the retreat for me; I'm enjoying your experiences vicariously!

Mim said...

I never get enough of seeing others fiber art. Inspiration I love! And I'm getting ready for another dye day.

Birdsong said...

Hey, I love all these posts about the retreat! Wish there were more...