Available Classes

90 to 120 minutes

Wheel Tune-up

Time: 90 or 120 minutes

Lots of us buy a spinning wheel and spin away not realizing that the spinning wheel needs regular maintenance if you want it to keep running smoothly for years and years – just like your car. Bring your spinning wheel and let me help you learn how to tighten, oil and grease your wheel until it feels like new. We will also talk about what parts may need to be replaced regularly and what parts to keep on hand in case of emergency.

Maximum class size: 15

Sampling Party

Time: 90 minutes

Your knitting teacher will tell you to swatch, your weaving teacher will recommend that you sample, and your spinning teacher will tell you take your wool from yarn to fabric. It feels like such a waste of time when we just want to get to the fun part. Let me show you how to make sampling fun and the things you can learn just by taking that bit of extra time and fiber. We’ll also talk about making a sample library so that future sampling can be cut down as the same fibers are used again and again.

Students should bring note taking materials, a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle.

Maximum class size: 20

In the Raw

Time: 120 minutes

You’re wooed by all those sexy fleeces right off the sheep. The smell entices you and they look so full of potential, but you don’t want to make a mistake. That worry ends with this class. We will talk about what to look for, what to avoid, what you can sometimes overlook in an otherwise perfect fleece and how to know if the fleece in your hands is the perfect one for your project. But it’s not all talk. You’ll get to lay your hands on some great fleece.

Maximum class size: 20

Fastest Carder in the East

Time: 90 minutes

Hand carding doesn’t have to be slow or laborious. I have taken all the classes and done research to narrow down a great and fast method. Just for you!!! This is my favorite method and now I can card fiber faster with my hand cards than I can using a drum carder. In this class we will focus on this method that has served me well over the years. You too can be fast with the hand cards.

Students should bring a pair of curved back hand carders. There will be a few available in class to lend if you don’t yet have your own.

Maximum class size: 20

Longdraw Shorts

Time: 90 minutes

Long Draw can be a little scary if you’ve been working with short forward draw for a long time. In a short amount of time we will get you working with this wondrous method of woolen spinning. We’ll talk about both long-draw and supported long draw as well as what fiber preps can help you or hold you back.

Students should be able to spin a consistent yarn using any drafting method.

Students should bring a spinning wheel in good working order.

Maximum class size: 20

Half Day

Woolen vs Worsted Cage Match

Time: One half day

Woolen and worsted are two simple words that are the core of spinning. You see them used all the time. Is it about the fiber preparation or the spinning style? There are so many ways to look at woolen and worsted. Experts have been arguing for decades about the right and wrong of it.

In this class we will get right in there and explore woolen and worsted wool in both preparation methods and drafting methods. After we look at all the technicalities of the words we will break it down into methods that are easy to understand and then combine the techniques in different ways to get wonderful yarns that are perfect for any project you can imagine.

You will use hand combs, hand cards and flick cards to prepare several different wool breeds and see what happens when you follow the rules and when you learn how to break the rules for a specific effect.
We will spin processed top and roving to look at the differences between machine and hand processed fibers.
You will leave with a deeper understanding of what the words Woolen and Worsted mean in spinning and how those two small words can open worlds of possibility with their spinning.

Please Bring: A spinning wheel in good working order, hand cards, hand combs, flick if you have them. A few will be available to lend in class, lap cloth, hang tags for labeling and note taking materials.

Spinning Level: Must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Going Steady - Half Day Option

Time: One half day

If you want more consistent yarns this is the class for you. I will show you important tricks to spinning more consistent yarns. We will get hands on with some glorious fibers and explore how drafting, twist and ply effect a finished yarn and how to manage each one for a consistent yarn in grist and twist.

But it’s not just all class and learning. You will have an opportunity to play “What Went Wrong” a spinners game that diagnoses the specific problems in finished yarns that aren’t quite right.

Please Bring: A spinning wheel in good working order, 3 empty bobbins, Lazy Kate, and note taking materials.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

American Breeds - Half Day Option

Time: Half day

Better than hot dogs, baseball and apple pie. Fleece! Grown right here in the USA. As spinners we often think of Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand as the source of all things wooly. This class will look at breeds that were developed in the United States. That’s right, our very own American Pie Sheep. No, not sheep pie…. just American grown fleece and you get to play with them!! These breeds range from next to skin soft all the way to best used only for carpets. All of them are fun to spin and all are extremely interesting to explore the history of what we have right here in the US.

The half day class will touch on 4 breeds.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread. This class is good for those who spin on a spindle or a spinning wheel.

Maximum class size: 20

Conservation Fleece - Half Day Option

A Rare or Endangered Breed Study

Time: Half Day

So many breeds of sheep (and other livestock too) seem to fall out of favor with the mills or the farmers. It happens for many reasons and most of them are financial. But these old breeds are the foundation of the modern-day flocks that we have and, they are extremely important to protect. That’s not even to mention, the wool is astounding as well! This class will explore a few of the sheep on the endangered breeds lists in both the US and in Great Britain. We will hold them and work with them and explore how valuable they truly are.

All the breeds will be from fleece. In class we will card, comb and flick the fibers and see what kinds of yarns they want to be. Some hand tools will be available in class to share but if you have your own, please bring them along with a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle.

Maximum class size: 20

Worsted Style - Half Day Option

Combing and Flicking

Time: Half Day

Worsted and very close to worsted yarn comes from combing and flicking wool. We will talk about which wool breeds and types love these processing methods, which may not respond well and how to decide. We will learn several methods for flicking and work on hand combing using Viking or mini combs. The 3-hour class will be technique focused and will spend our time prepping the wool to spin, but there will be no spinning.

Please bring to class combs and a flick. If you don’t have your own, a few will be available in class to borrow.

Maximum class size: 20

Woolen Style - Carding - Half Day Option

Time: Half Day

Is there really a difference between yarn spun from hand carded wool and yarn spun from wool that was processed on a drum carder? Let’s try things and see what happens. In this 3-hour class we will focus on techniques of using these tools. How to get the best prep from each and how different methods of removing the wool from the carding cloth on both can offer different effects.

Students should bring hand cards and a drum carder if they have them. A few will be available in class to share for those who don’t yet have their own.

Maximum class size: 20

Bippity Boppity Boo!

Fleece Fairy Godmother

Time: Half Day

You have a fleece or two, maybe more. You aren’t sure what to do with, you aren’t even sure if it’s a good one. How do you turn it from Cinderella of the hearth to Cinderella of the ball? With the help of a Fairy Godmother, of course. Bring your fleece samples to this class and together we will work our magic to turn them into something beautiful. We’ll work together to identify the good (and maybe bad) of your fleece. We’ll wash, and hand process your sample two different ways. Then we’ll spin samples to see into which what princess it can transform.

Bring me 2 to 3 ounces of your dirty fleece and we will discuss the possibilities. Also, come prepared with an ounce or two of your washed fleece and by the end of the class you will have at least two yarn samples to choose from for your project.

If you have them, bring hand cards, hand combs and/or a flicker. (I will have several sets to share if you don’t own them.)

Please bring a spindle or a spinning wheel in good working order.

Maximum class size: 20

Beauty and the Beast

Time: Half Day

Sometimes there are just matches in life that just don’t seem to go together. Like the big Beast and beautiful Belle. Yet somehow together they seem to work. The rose blooms.

Cross breed sheep can be like this. 2 very different breeds of sheep that are seemingly polar opposites yet together they’ve created offspring that can have a really amazing fleece. How do you know it’s amazing? I’ll show you all the clues that will tell you about your Beauty and Beast cross breed fleece and let you know if they’ll be good for the project you have in mind.
We will look at three cross breeds that I provide and learn how to make decisions from scouring methods to processing to drafting to get the most out of the fleece. By practicing with these three examples you will go home with more confidence for future fleece purchases.

Students should be able to spin a continuous thread.

Please bring any hand tools that you have. – flick, hand cards, combs. A few will be available to share during class. A lap cloth is also great to protect your clothing. Also bring hang tags for labeling and note taking materials. Small plastic bags are also useful for unspun lock samples.

Bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle to make yarn samples.

Maximum class size: 20

Fleecing

For Fiber Festivals with Fleece sales

Time: Half Day

How to buy a good fleece. It’s more than shoving and kicking your competitors. We won’t go over tackling in this class but we will learn how to select a fleece perfect for a project you have in mind. We’ll walk through the steps of choosing a sound fleece including a hearing test, considering lock length and a closer look for hidden problems. We’ll also learn what makes a superior fleece and fleece barn etiquette (no shoving). Then it’s off to the fleece barn for the hands on portion of the class, actual fleece shopping. SHOPPING!!! Come to class with a fleece worthy project in mind.

Please Bring: Note taking materials.

Spinning Level: All levels

Maximum class size: 20

Color Wheel Carding

Time: Half Day

It’s all about getting the perfect color. We can do that simply with a little fiber and a pair of hand cards. We will begin with just the primary colors and black and white. We will learn how to adjust and blend just the right amount of these colors to make a wide range of colors for your projects. You will leave the class with more faith in your ability to use hand cards as well as a knowledge of how to blend colors consistently for even the largest of projects.

Students should bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle, a pair of general purpose hand cards (from 72tpi up to 112 tpi) and a battery powered scale that can measure in 0.1-ounce quantities if you have one.

Maximum class size: 20

Presidential Sheep

Time: Half Day

The early leaders of the United States were busy with more than constitutions and revolutions. They also loved sheep! As this country’s first shepherds they saw the importance of many facets and varieties of sheep. We can see from the writings of these men some of their reasons for their choosing the specific breeds that they kept. Let’s take some time together to look at the wool that these sheep grow. We will process it with hand tools in several different ways and spin some samples to find out what each breed does best.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread. Please bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle for sampling. Also, please bring a flick carder. If you don’t have one, there will be a few to borrow during class.

Maximum class size: 20

For the Love of Longwools

Time: Half Day

The Longwools category of wool sometimes gets a bad rap. What do you think Masham or Lincoln or Wensleydale is good for? Many spinners will say it’s too scratchy and is only good for upholstery or carpets.

It is good for both of those things if you spin it for those purposes BUT there is so much more to this category. It makes wonderful lace that really shows off all those important holes. It is great for outerwear because it spins into a denser yarn that pills much less than other shorter stapled fibers.

This class will focus on the preparation and spinning 3 to 4 breeds with a 5-inch staple or longer. We will learn how to get this fiber to do the things you want, including the secret to getting next-to-the-skin yarns from longwools. We will use commercially prepared fibers as well as prepare our own from washed fleece. By comparing and contrasting you’ll see what benefit there is to processing your own Longwool fleece and how bring out the best in these wools.

Please Bring: A spinning wheel in good working order or Spindle, hand held combs, note taking materials. A lap cloth is also helpful.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Getting Down with the Down Breeds

Time: Half Day

When you hear Suffolk, Southdown or Clun Forest do you think about dinner or do you think about cushy, hard to felt handspun yarn? These sheep are both but I’m not going to help you cook, I’m going to help you enjoy how squooshy they are and how resistant to felting these fleeces are.

I am convinced that the Down and Down-type breeds are the most underappreciated and misunderstood of fibers. Even sometimes the shepherds who raise these sheep are unaware of their fabulous powers of spring and loft. In this class we will deconstruct and demystify down and down-type fibers, through hand preparation and sample spinning.

We’ll go over washing, processing, and spinning. I want to help you maximize your fleece’s potential, but I won’t leave you there. I’ll answer all the questions, help you find the gold hidden in these breeds, and discuss how you can best use them!

Please Bring: A spinning wheel in good working order or Spindle, hand cards, note taking materials, hang tags for samples. If you have a flick and/or hand combs bring those too for experimenting.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Cormo in a Nutshell

Time: Half Day

Cormo is a fine wool that can do surprising things. It can be a little scary for some spinners but once you learn its secrets you will find that you will want to surround yourself with this wool.

In this half day class we will focus on the most worrisome parts of Cormo (as well as a lot of the very fine wools) which tend to be scouring and processing for best results. We will also practice spinning techniques to help get the yarn you want with a focus on bounciness and yarn thickness.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread. You should bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle and a flick carder. There will be a few flick carders available to share during class.

Maximum class size: 20

Speed up your Spinning

Time: Half Day

When beginning to spin for a project, I never start with speed, I begin with a good sample. After I have my sample and know where I’m going all bets are off and I’m ready to leave others in the dust. Join me to learn all of my little tricks to spin a little faster on your spinning wheel and quickly fill those bobbins for that yarn project you can’t wait to begin.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread and have a spinning wheel in good working order. Please bring any faster whorls for your wheel if you have them.

Maximum class size: 20

All the Luxury

Time: Half Day

Cashmere, Qiviut, Yak, Bison and others like them are the fibers from which dream projects are made of. They can seem a little daunting and they can be a little pricey. Come with me and touch and play with several of these fibers. We will learn the best ways to spin them and finish the yarns to get the most beautiful end results. Let me help you move past your fear of these fibers. We will look at how much twist they need to make a strong yarn, drafting methods that work best with these shorter stapled fibers, plying methods and how to get more bang for your buck and a surprising way to finish the yarns that brings out all their glory.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread and have a spinning wheel in good working order or a Spindle. Woolee Winders™ are not the best option for this class.

Maximum class size: 20

Woolie CliffsNotes

Time: Half Day

This is an awesome condensed Breeds Study. In is you will get an overview of the way I love to classify wool to give you some idea before you even start sampling of how to process and spin them. Most people categorize wool into three or four or five categories. I like five. In this class we will look at one breed from each of the five categories and talk about why they are in that category. What makes each breeds wool different and how this can influence your decisions about how to spin them. We will talk about crimp, staple length, lock shape and more. This little bit of information can help you make good decisions about what kind of wool to choose for each project you are planning.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread. Please bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle for sampling. Also, please bring a flick carder. If you don’t have one, there will be a few to borrow during class.

Maximum class size: 20

Full Day

Wheel to Shuttle

Time: 1 day

Have you been wanting to use your handspun for weaving? Do you even have a fiber that you just know would make a beautiful woven fabric but aren’t sure where to begin? I’m happy to help. Join me while I share my thought processes when I’m working on a new weaving project.

In this class you choose a fiber from your stash that you would love to spin for weaving and I will help you make that happen. We will talk about twist and how much is necessary and how to decide. We will talk about plying and how different numbers of plies may change the fabric. We will make lots of yarn samples and then make a small fabric sample to see the results.

At the same time, we will talk about how to translate all of this to your loom at home and how to make woven samples and why they are important. We will also discuss how to finish your cloth to make it ready for its end use.

Students should be able to spin a single and ply.

Please bring 2 to 3 ounces of a fiber you want to weave with, a spinning wheel in good working order and 3 empty bobbins, or a spindle. Also bring a small hand-held loom such as the Purl and Loop Swatchmaker, Hockett Loom, or Schacht Mini Loom. A few will be available in class. It is also helpful to have tags for labeling samples and note taking materials.

Maximum class size: 20

Who's the Fairest of Them All?

The Princess Sheep Study

Time: 6 hrs (or 12 hours)

Take an enchanted journey with fairy tale princesses and the princesses of the animal world, sheep. This class connects the spirit of each movie princess with a breed of sheep. Which breed is strong and brave? Which breed is daring and cunning? Which breed is the fairest of them all?

We will spend 1 or 2 full days learning the ins and outs of 10 or 15 sheep breeds, the history of each breed and every detail about each breed’s fleece. Working from washed, unprocessed fleece we will learn to comb flick and card. Through sampling we will learn what processing and spinning methods work best with each breed.

A sprinkle of fairy dust will keep the fun in our spinning and you will be whistling while you work all day through!
Students should be able to spin a continuous thread.

Please bring a spindle or spinning wheel in good working order. Also bring hand combs or mini combs, a flick and hand cards. If you don’t own these tools a few will be available to borrow during class. In addition, a pen and note taking materials are useful.

Maximum class size: 20

All in the Fleece - 1 Day Option

Time: One day

Why would a spinner want to spin Southdown? What is the best way to prepare a Longwool for spinning? Why is Merino such a fussy fiber? This class demystifies the what, why and how of sheep breeds.

Luxuriate in 12 different sheep breeds and learn how to choose the best breed for any project you have in mind. You’ll also learn the best preparation and spinning method for the type of yarn you want to make from the breed you choose.

We’ll start with an overview of sheep breeds and their 5 categories. Then you’ll get your hands wet learning to wash raw wool in several different ways. Next, you will try a variety of ways to processing that fleece…. or to not process it at all. Which methods work best for which breed types? We’ll go over that too! It won’t be long, and you’ll be spinning. We’ll get super technical and you’ll learn all the ins and outs of getting the best spin from your fleece.

When you finish with this class you’ll never look at a fleece the same way again!

Please Bring: Hand Cards, Flick, Hand Held Combs (if you don’t have them a few will be available to lend) Spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle, pen, one empty bobbin, a lap cloth is useful for flicking.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Cormo: All you need to know - 1 Day Option

Plus a little more

Time: One day

If you can work with Cormo, you can work with any wool. So let’s focus a bit and find out what makes this wool so desirable. This class will take Cormo through its paces. We will talk about the breeds history, how to scour it without felting it all the while maintaining that lock structure to make the processing easier.

After the scouring we will flick, comb and hand card it to see what happens in the yarn with all of these different processing methods while we talk about how to choose and what projects all of these yarns would be wonderful for.

We will learn how to make yarns ranging from gossamer to bulky and how much twist is best for each yarn thickness. We will also discuss varying the twist amounts in the singles and the ply to play with bounce and elasticity a bit.

The single day class will be an overview of all of these thing.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread.

Students should bring: A spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle, a flick, hand combs good for fine wool, medium or fine hand cards. If these tools aren’t in your collection a few will be available in class to share. Labels or tags for identifying sample skeins would also be useful.

Maximum class size: 20

Practically Perfect in Every Way; The Leicesters

Or, The Mary Poppins of A Breeds Family

Time: One day

With these three breeds, English Leicester, Border Leicester, Blue Faced Leicester you may never need another wool. There is something here for every project and every spinner.

In this class we will prepare and spin all three of these breeds using every method I know. You will leave class with lots of samples and lots of ideas about how to use these wool’s. We will reach deep into our carpet bags of spinning tricks and find out which preparation and spinning methods work to bring out that luster we love so much, which of the breeds will give the smoothest yarn and which will give that lovely halo for those ethereal lace projects. And how can we spin these lovely Longwools to add a bit of loft to the yarn. You won’t need a spoon full of sugar to add these breeds to your spinning repertoire.

Please bring a spindle or a spinning wheel in good working order, hand cards, hand combs, flick if you have them. A few will be available to lend in class, lap cloth, hang tags for labeling and note taking materials.

Spinning Level: Must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Snow White and the Seven Drafting Methods

Time: One Day

Snow White couldn’t have survived without the Seven Dwarfs by her side. As a spinner it would be hard to make it without knowing all about about drafting. Maleficent may not have cast you out to your death but maybe you feel all alone out there in the big fiber world not knowing which drafting method is going to help you make the yarn you want. I’m here to rescue you with the 7 drafting methods that will help you make whatever yarn you want for whatever project you are planning. Which draft is Doc? Which is Dopey? Which will keep your fiber shiny and strong? Which will give you loft? Simple changes will make all the difference to your spinning and we can whistle while we work. hi-ho. hi-ho.

With some alteration, this class can also be a half day class, but we can only fit about 4 Dwarfs!

Please Bring: A spinning wheel in good working order, hang tags for labeling and note taking materials. If you have them, hand cards may be useful, but a few will be available to lend in class.

Spinning Level: Must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Spinning So Fine!

Time: One day

Stuck in a rut with your yarns? This class will get you spinning finer than you ever thought possible! You will learn the mechanics of spinning fine yarn and the types of drafting methods that make spinning fine yarn easier. We’ll work with the finest of fibers like cashmere to wool you never would have thought of for fine yarn. You’ll also learn how different fiber preparations will give the great results for fine yarn, and how to best utilize those hand combs, hand cards and flick cards. You’ll go from spinning DK weight yarn to cobweb lace in no time at all.

Please Bring: A Spinning Wheel in good working order, hand held combs, flick and hand cards if you have them (Some tools will be available to share), note taking materials, small bags for extra fibers, hang tags for labeling. Please bring your wheel’s original flyer to use during class, Woolee Winders™ are not recommended for getting the most out of this class.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Going Steady -1 Day Option

Time: One day

If you want more consistent yarns this is the class for you. I will show you important tricks to spinning more consistent yarns. We will get hands on with some glorious fibers and explore how drafting, twist and ply effect a finished yarn and how to manage each one for a consistent yarn in grist and twist.

But it’s not just all class and learning. You will have an opportunity to play “What Went Wrong” a spinners game that diagnoses the specific problems in finished yarns that aren’t quite right.

The full day class includes dyed fibers which can act differently than undyed fibers when we are trying to spin them.

Please Bring: A spinning wheel in good working order, 3 empty bobbins, Lazy Kate, and note taking materials.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

American Breeds -1 Day Option

Time: One day

Better than hot dogs, baseball and apple pie. Fleece! Grown right here in the USA. As spinners we often think of Great Britain, Australia and New Zealand as the source of all things wooly. This class will look at breeds that were developed in the United States. That’s right, our very own American Pie Sheep. No, not sheep pie…. just American grown fleece and you get to play with them!! These breeds range from next to skin soft all the way to best used only for carpets. All of them are fun to spin and all are extremely interesting to explore the history of what we have right here in the US.

The full day class will include 10 breeds.

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread. This class is good for those who spin on a spindle or a spinning wheel.

Maximum class size: 20

Conservation Fleece - 1 Day Option

A Rare or Endangered Breed Study

Time: One Day

So many breeds of sheep (and other livestock too) seem to fall out of favor with the mills or the farmers. It happens for many reasons and most of them are financial. But these old breeds are the foundation of the modern-day flocks that we have and, they are extremely important to protect. That’s not even to mention, the wool is astounding as well! This class will explore a few of the sheep on the endangered breeds lists in both the US and in Great Britain. We will hold them and work with them and explore how valuable they truly are.

All the breeds will be from fleece. In class we will card, comb and flick the fibers and see what kinds of yarns they want to be. Some hand tools will be available in class to share but if you have your own, please bring them along with a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle.

Maximum class size: 20

Worsted Style - 1 Day Option

Combing and Flicking

Time: One Day

Worsted and very close to worsted yarn comes from combing and flicking wool. We will talk about which wool breeds and types love these processing methods, which may not respond well and how to decide. We will learn several methods for flicking and work on hand combing using Viking or mini combs. The 6-hour class will include technique and will then build on the techniques as we spin some yarns from the wool we process to compare them and see what kinds of projects they might be best for.

Please bring to class combs and a flick. If you don’t have your own, a few will be available in class to borrow. Students should also bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle in addition to the hand tools.

Maximum class size: 20

Woolen Style - Carding - 1 Day Option

Time: One Day

Is there really a difference between yarn spun from hand carded wool and yarn spun from wool that was processed on a drum carder? Let’s try things and see what happens. In this 6-hour class we will focus on techniques of using these tools. How to get the best prep from each and how different methods of removing the wool from the carding cloth on both can offer different effects. Then we will expand our knowledge and spin some of the preps we made and see up close and personal what the differences truly are in the final yarns.

Students should bring hand cards and a drum carder if they have them. A few will be available in class to share for those who don’t yet have their own. Students should also bring a spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle for sampling.

Students in class should be able to spin a consistent thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Multi Day

The Great Wool Project

Or How Different Sheep Breeds and Processing Methods Affect the Drape and Wear of Cloth

Time: 12-15 hours

Why would a spinner want to spin Southdown? What is the best way to prepare a Longwool for spinning? Why is Merino such a fussy fiber? This class demystifies the what, why and how of sheep breeds. Luxuriate in 15 different sheep breeds and learn how to choose the best breed for a project as well as the best preparation and spinning method for the type of yarn from the chosen breed.

Participants can expect an overview of sheep breeds and their five categories before full immersion in fiber prep ranging from washing raw wool in different ways to trying various ways of processing—or not—as well as which methods work best for which breed types?

Spinning follows, as students learn how to get the best spin from a fleece. Throughout the weekend, participants will select and focus on two or three breeds to make larger samples to take home and try out in the fabric.

Experience level: Beginner and beyond. (Students must be able to spin a single and ply on a wheel.)

Maximum class size: 20

Spin and Weave

Time: 2 days

There are so many things that are said about how yarn must be to use in weaving. Some of them are true but not all. Some of them scare people away who want to make their own weaving yarns. The goal in this class is to remove that fear.

Students will learn about making yarn samples for a weaving project and then making fabric samples for the finished object. We will sample three different wool’s while talking about twist and number of plies. Students will then choose one wool which they will spin for a woven sample. On day two we will warp the looms and weave a sample. During the warping and weaving process, we will talk about loom tension and ways to handle handspun yarn that may be different than yarn from a mill. We will also discuss wet finishing our fabrics.

Students will leave with more confidence in their ability to spin for weaving and the courage to move forward with their future spinning for weaving plans.

Students should be able to spin a single and ply, and feel comfortable warping their loom.

Please Bring a Small loom. It can be a rigid heddle loom with a 10 and/or 12-dent reed, or a portable floor loom with at least a 10-dent reed. Bring any warping tools you have such as a peg or small warping board and at least one shuttle. Also bring a spinning wheel in good working order and at least 3 empty bobbins. Note taking materials are also useful.

A bobbin winder will be available.

Maximum class size: 15

All in the Fleece - 2 Day Option

Time: Two days

Why would a spinner want to spin Southdown? What is the best way to prepare a Longwool for spinning? Why is Merino such a fussy fiber? This class demystifies the what, why and how of sheep breeds.

Luxuriate in 18 different sheep breeds and learn how to choose the best breed for any project you have in mind. You’ll also learn the best preparation and spinning method for the type of yarn you want to make from the breed you choose.

We’ll start with an overview of sheep breeds and their 5 categories. Then you’ll get your hands wet learning to wash raw wool in several different ways. Next, you will try a variety of ways to processing that fleece…. or to not process it at all. Which methods work best for which breed types? We’ll go over that too! It won’t be long, and you’ll be spinning. We’ll get super technical and you’ll learn all the ins and outs of getting the best spin from your fleece.

When you finish with this class you’ll never look at a fleece the same way again!

2-day workshop includes How to Buy a Fleece

Please Bring: Hand Cards, Flick, Hand Held Combs (if you don’t have them a few will be available to lend) Spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle, pen, one empty bobbin, a lap cloth is useful for flicking.

Spinning Level: Students must be able to spin a continuous thread.

Maximum class size: 20

Cormo: All you need to know - 2 Day Option

Plus a little more

Time: Two Days

If you can work with Cormo, you can work with any wool. So let’s focus a bit and find out what makes this wool so desirable. This class will take Cormo through its paces. We will talk about the breeds history, how to scour it without felting it all the while maintaining that lock structure to make the processing easier.

After the scouring we will flick, comb and hand card it to see what happens in the yarn with all of these different processing methods while we talk about how to choose and what projects all of these yarns would be wonderful for.

We will learn how to make yarns ranging from gossamer to bulky and how much twist is best for each yarn thickness. We will also discuss varying the twist amounts in the singles and the ply to play with bounce and elasticity a bit.

The the 2-day class we will look at all of these things in depth and have more time to do so!

Students should be able to spin a consistent thread.

Students should bring: A spinning wheel in good working order or a spindle, a flick, hand combs good for fine wool, medium or fine hand cards. If these tools aren’t in your collection a few will be available in class to share. Labels or tags for identifying sample skeins would also be useful.

Maximum class size: 20

Spinning Fine Yarns

Time: Two days

Stuck in a rut with your yarns? Want to make some three-ply sock yarn for socks that fit in your shoes? Are you trying to get that finest gossamer yarn for a shawl that will fit through a wedding ring? This class will get you spinning finer than you ever thought possible!

You will learn the mechanics of spinning fine yarn and the types of drafting methods that make spinning fine yarn easier. We’ll work with the finest of fibers like cashmere to wool you never would have thought of for fine yarn. We will explore twist and how much twist is necessary depending on the fiber being spun. We will talk about some ways to handle hand painted top and how the yarn thickness affects the color when spinning fine yarns. We will also make some knitted or crocheted samples.

We’ll also learn how different fiber preparations will give the great results for fine yarn, and how to best utilize those hand combs, hand cards and flick cards. You’ll go from spinning DK weight yarn to cobweb lace in no time at all.

Students should be able to spin a single and ply.

Please bring: A Spinning Wheel in good working order with 3 empty bobbins, hand held combs, flick and hand cards if you have them (Some tools will be available to share), note taking materials, small bags for extra fibers, hang tags for labeling. A lap cloth or apron is always useful.

Please bring your wheel’s original flyer to use during class, Woolee Winders™ are not recommended for getting the most out of this class. A lap cloth or apron is always useful.

Maximum class size: 20

Down-type Breeds from Fleece to Fabric

Time: Two days

The Down and Down type breeds can seem the most mysterious. These sheep are all around us but sometimes these fleeces are the most difficult to find and when we do find them they often haven’t been taken care of in the way a hand spinner might wish.

Do they felt? What’s the best way to prepare them? How much vegetable matter (VM) is too much in a fleece? What’s the easiest way to scour a fleece and when is it clean enough? What does spiral crimp even mean?

In this class we are going to check out the crimp up close and begin to understand why these wool behave differently than other breeds of the same micron. We will talk in depth about scouring and look at how easy it is to get around VM and when to reject a fleece for too much VM.

We will prepare the wool using hand cards, a drum carder, flicks and combs to see how they change the fiber. We will also spin the wool using short forward draw and long draw/ supported long draw to compare the resulting yarn. We will compare mill prepped roving with our hand carded or drum carded fiber and talk about the differences.

After all of this we will make some fabric samples using weaving, knitting and/or crochet.

Students should be able to spin a single and ply.

Please bring: Hand held combs, a flick, hand cards and a drum carder if you have them. A few of all tools will be available in class to share for those who don’t yet have their own. Bring an assortment of knitting needles or crochet hooks for the size yarns you normally spin. You may also bring a handheld loom for sampling (such as Hockett, Purl and Loop, or Schacht Zoom Loom). In addition, please bring a spindle or a spinning wheel in good working order with a few bobbins.

Maximum class size: 20

Contact Me

Please contact me for information on class pricing, and for travel and materials fees.

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