Yarnspinners Tales's Podcast
Exploring the world of fiber, one draft at a time.
YST Episode 68 Interviews with two scholar spinners

Janilee and Chris are both post graduate students at the Manchester England college.  Both are spinners and weavers, but have two different concepts for their doctorial thesis.  I was able to interview each and had a wonderful time talking to them.  Listen in, and learn about early weavers and spinners, and the modern day archeological study of them.

Interlude music in today's podcast is from Music Alley and is by the group Celtic Stone.  The title is Drowsy Maggie.

Looking for a link to buy my Spinner's Journal?  It's on Lulu here.

Direct download: YST_episode_68_final_mp3.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:30am EDT

YST A Spinner's Journal promo podcast

A Spinner's Journal, your own place to record all of the processes of the projects that turn fiber into yarn.

I am a note taker, list maker by nature, and for all the years I've been spinning, those notes are on many different pieces of paper.  I found I still like to refer back to them, and decided I needed a better system for taking my notes.  And if I needed it, I bet other spinners do too.  So I created the Spinner's Journal and it's now finally available for sale.

I've given some details about the journal in this short promo podcast.  Take a listen to see all the wonderful features of the journal.

The journal is available here.   Or if you want to go to my blog yarnspinners dot blogspot dot com, you'll find a link button on the right hand side of the page.

Music in today's promo is from Music Alley and is called Drowsie Maggie by Celtic Stone.

Direct download: promo_podcast_final.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 4:28pm EDT

Happy fourth year YST

This month celebrates the fact that I have been doing this podcast for four years.  If you've listened since the beginning, THANK YOU!   If you just found me today, WELCOME!

The best thing about podcasts is their longevity.  Oh some podcasts are very linked to current events and may outdate, but information about spinning is always fresh.  Someone is always just learning to spin, or dye fiber, or wash a fleece.  And if they look at my archives and the titles, they will probably find a podcast to help them with that process.

If you are on Ravelry, a quick and easy way to see the topics of each podcast is to go to the yarnspinners spin in group. There is a sticky thread in the posts with the topics listed.

The birthday music today is from Music Alley and includes:

Team Smile and Nod with Happy Birthday you matter  Jason Silver with Happy Birthday and Mario Ajero with Happy Birthday Chopin Ballade


Direct download: Happy_4th_Year_YST.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:35am EDT

Fluffly, that's what woolen spinning is all about.  You spin from fluffy batts, and you spin a lofty yarn.

The Yarnspinnerstales Spin In Ravelry group has been practicing this spinning technique this month.  I joined them and talk about my experiences spinning woolen on each of my wheels in this podcast.  I also give some suggestions to help you get going with this wonderful way of spinning. I also will be posting photos of what I spun for this challenge on my blog.

I was in the mood for more music in today's podcast too, all with the theme of letting go, a very necessary technique when spinning woolen.  All music is from Music Alley with thank yous to these special musicians:

Laura Clapp with Just Let Go

LeRoots with Got to Let Go

The Hosts with So Hard to let go

To make my sample yarn, I decided to use sample batts from two of my Phat Fiber boxes.  These small batts were just the right size to practice the technique and came from the following vendors:

The Critter Ranch  a super soft batt, no fiber content marked but was probably llama or alpaca.

Maude and Me  an alpaca and angelina batt

The Enchanted Knoll  These were not samples but several large batts gifted to me by a listener (thank you again!)  Lovely forest greens and black these are listed as superwash wool, recycled sari silk and sparkles.  The photo you see with this podcast is a small sample of what the 2 ply yarn will look like when I am done. spinning

Direct download: YST_Episode_67_spinning_woolen.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:37am EDT

YST Episode 66 Learning curves and beaded yarn

I am talking again about the new Majacraft Aura wheel and my learning process as I've spun on it.  Although you may not have this specific wheel, you can listen and apply some of my ideas to any wheel that you would like to expand in your spinning skills.

The second section discusses my crazy idea of putting beads in the yarn before I knit, and how I finally got that idea to work.  The photo here shows that yarn on the bobbin of the Aura.

The music today is a bit different than normal as I recently discovered there are some techno tunes I really enjoy.  So I've included a techno interlude called Hestor is Amused by Johnjack.  If techno is really not your thing, the interludes are short and I give you a chance to turn the podcast off before the end song.  But I really urge you to listen, as I do like the song, Pas De Deux by Lee Negin. 

All of today's music is from Music Alley with my extra thank you to Clare Dowling for my use of her Spinning Wheels as the podcasts intro music.

Until later, happy spinning!

Direct download: YST_Episode_66_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:50am EDT

YST Episode 65 The one for knitters who want to be spinners

Today I decided to podcast to potential spinners, and entice them into the fold, so to speak.  So the podcast is all about taking that first step or two.  Before long you will be a spinner too.

I also included a review of a very good magazine to start you on your way, Knit and Spin by Interweave Press. 

Music in today's podcast is from Music Alley  The interlude is called Music for an unborn podcast and is by Michael van Laar  The closing song is by Cat Malojian Only YouAnd a big thank you to Clare Dowling for her perfect song for the opening of all my podcasts, Spinning Wheel.



Direct download: YST_Episode_65_final.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:56pm EDT

YST Episode 64 Interview with Oogie McGuire

The Black Welsh Mountain sheep is the only naturally black wool and has been prized for that quality for hundreds of years.  Still being raised today, it's prized by handspinners and today's podcast talks to one of the very knowledgable breeders of this breed.


Shown here in the photo with a cape made from her sheep's wonderful black wool, Oogie McGuire raises the sheep at her farm Desert Weyr.  She graciously let me interview her about raising this wonderful breed of sheep.

Direct download: YST_Episode_64_Interview_with_Oogie_McGuire.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:16pm EDT

YST Episode 63 Spinning a lock of fiber, spinning from the fold

Spinning a lock of wool is the traditional way to get a very thin yarn.  That is because you can pull a small number of fibers out of the lock, and give the drafting zone a very thin prep of fiber.  In this podcast I review how each of five different breeds of sheep's locks spun and how I made my decision whether to continue to prep the fiber for spinning by lock washing.

The five breeds discussed are Cormo/Border Leicester, Corriedale, Romney, Cormo and an unknown ewe lambs fleece.

This is one time a video is worth many podcast words, so I have posted a video showing me spinning from the lock on Youtube.  You can find it here.

There's a second part to the podcast, discussing spinning from the fold.  This technique is often used with angora, and I've discussed why and how to spin from the fold.

Interlude music is by Kevin Wood, and is called 'Twilight of Hope"

The closing song is by Lisa Redford and is called "Hope Never Dies"


Both can be found on the podsafe music network.

Direct download: YST_Episode_63_final.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 10:34am EDT

YST Episode 62 Rare Breed Reviews

Two rare sheep breeds and their fleeces are reviewed in this podcast, the Black Welsh Mountain sheep, and the Clun Forest.  The lovely sheep photo shown here are those Clun Forest sheep.

Thanks to Ken and Oogie at Desert Weyr  for their breeding of Black Welsh Mountain sheep.  Oogie was an internet aquaintance and part of the rare breeds exchange I did many years ago.  She provided the samples of fiber from this breed that I talk about in the podcast.

The book by Deborah Robson The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook, is shown here on Amazon.

Music in today's podcast is from Music Alley  Thank you to Wren Ross for the very appropiate It Had to Be Ewe.

The closing song is by Marina Tihvinskaya and is called Celtic Song, but is not what you expect at all!  Enjoy!  Marina writes: "please let your listeners know that my website is www.marinatihvinskaya.net and the name of the album is My Favourite Dependence."

Until later, happy spinning!


Direct download: YST_Episode_62_final.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 11:37pm EDT

YST Episode 61 A New Wheel

It only happens now and then in a spinner's life, the decision to buy a spinning wheel.  I had that chance last month, and am now the happy owner of a Majacraft Aura.  I talk about my story of finding the wheel, and what I have learned in the few weeks of owning it.

A big thank you to Clare Dowling for her Spinning Song, that I've used for the pod cast's opening for all these years.

The closing music for today's podcast is by William Saunders and is called Chasing Daylight.

If you'd like to join us in the spinning technique spin along, go to Ravelry, search for the group Yarnspinnerstales spin in, and find the specific threads for each month's technique.  With done a single study, lock spinning, and spinning from the fold.

Direct download: YST_Episode_61_Final.mp3
Category:podcasts -- posted at: 12:43am EDT