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Hand Spinning News

Stoppapparaten Perfekt, AKA Speedweve

Mending, particularly visible mending, has been fashionable in recent months or even years. This month, Kate Davies has published an essay on the subject. The intriguing device in the picture to the right is a Stoppapparaten Perfekt, AKA Speedweve, which Josefin has recently managed to obtain and 'shows and tells'.

I don't plan the themes for these issues but it often seems as if certain things come to the fore each month. Two great finished projects / patterns caught my eye at around the same time which are sewn bags made from handwoven fabric which in turn is made from handspun yarn.

Finally this month there's a surprisingly substantial selection of textile-based artworks.

Read on for this month's round-up of news, views and reviews for spinners, knitters, crocheters, dyers and weavers.

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Cover photo: by cottonbro, via Pexels.



In the media


Handspun stories

A tantalizing textile tool treasure

A tantalizing textile tool treasure

This fascinating device is the Stoppapparaten Perfekt AKA Speedweve.

It's highly sought-after, Josefin had to pay 800 Kronor, around £65 which is ten times its original price.

She gives us a good look at the apparatus itself, the packaging and instructions. In the picture she's using spindle-spun yarn in a bright colour for a fashionable visible repair and so that we can easily see the mend.



"The time of wear and tear might make us reflect on the bigger picture of our time passing, so the time of our mending might also become time dedicated to the appreciation of our socks."

Here Kate Davies shares an essay about mending from her book Wheesht.

Natural Dyeing Safely at Home

Natural Dyeing Safely at Home

"There's enormous pleasure in using natural materials for dyeing, and it's something that I encourage everyone to do", says Devin Helmen.

Here are their safety tips.

Crossing a big item off the list

Crossing a big item off the list

A combospin involves combining many different colours or fibres.

The technique Knit/Wit used here was to make lots of small nests, put them in a bag and reach for them randomly. This lot combines eight Southern Cross Fibre club shipments.

Click through to see the finished cardigan and how these colours have played out.

No wool = no sails = no Vikings

No wool = no sails = no Vikings

How long would it have taken to spin the yarn needed to weave a sail, by spindle?

Ewespecial muses on this mind-blowing question, and links to some relevant articles (It's hard to find her links because of the colour of the links/text but there are at least three in there.)

I am surprised to learn that they used wool, I would have expected a plant fibre.

Angelique At Last

Angelique at last

This is the_peahen's Angelique (not me, a different peahen).

Blog posts where spinners explain their choices, describe their problems and solutions, and collect together all of the work-in-progress pictures have tended to give way to faster and shorter social media posts, which is a shame, so I do really appreciate posts like this one.

The shawl is Angelique, the_peahen links to the designer's site.

Merino blends: taking advantage of fibre characteristics

Merino blends: taking advantage of fibre characteristics

Merino has been historically valued for the qualities of its wool and is still one of the softest wools.

Blending it with other fibres can add characteristics to the resulting yarn; luxury, drape, lustre, strength, a halo.

Amy Tyler considers what you can add to merino to some blends and their characteristics.


Colour inspiration

When little needs saying except 'beautiful colour'



Sometimes a colour combination speaks loudly and clearly of its inspiration.

Here we have a woodland glade, hand dyed and spun by Shelley


Tips and tutorials

Changing hands

Changing hands

Do you draft and twist your spindle with the same hands?

Josefin says that there are ergonomic benefits to learning to switch hands and that there are other benefits too.

Colour from weeds

Colour from weeds

Lynn Ruggles has made a surprisingly extensive study of weeds from her garden as dyes. She has used various wools and four plants, common in America.

Even if you're not able to access these particular plants, this article may inspire you to experiment with the plants close to you.



Two rams talking with ewes being shorn in the background. Graham:I don't know dude. On one hand it's the only time we see them naked. But the all-over stubble...

If you like Yvonne, click the image to find her page, you can use next and previous to explore more cartoons.

Keeping this wheel spinning

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The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook  by Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson

The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook by Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson

"If you have been spinning for any length of time, you have probably heard of The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook by Carol Ekarius and Deborah Robson or maybe own it yourself. If not, you probably should", says Sukrita Mahon

Luthvarian's top 5 books for new spinners

Luthvarian's top five books for new spinners

If you are a relatively new spinner then this short video is a must-watch. I'm familiar with some of these books and would say that some will be of interest and value to intermediate and experienced spinners too.

This is five book reviews in one video, presented using animation!


Sometimes just a picture is enough

Rustic teapot cosy

Rustic teapot cosy

The rustic look of this yarn suits this teapot. Molly says that the handspun yarn "automatically makes each piece special".

The yarn was by her good friend Jane who has just started spinning.

Fractal background

Fractal background

Handspun yarn works well against a solid dark colour and here we see that it works the opposite way around too.

The handspun yarn is fractal spun and plied.

Doubleweave Colorwork Ruana

Doubleweave Colorwork Ruana

This weaving project was more about the learning process than the finished project, but it does look attractive.

"This was a big weaving project that stretched my skills. I learned so much!" says Janelle.

Her blog post contains details of the project, the things she learned, the mistakes she made and how she fixed them.

Selbstkardierter Farbverlauf

Selbstkardierter Farbverlauf

This is brombeertuerkis' first gradient. The fibre is from Hilltop Cloud.

Click through and swipe to see the pretty cables. Not far back in her feed are 'in progress' shots of the spinning and knitting.

The part that she's most thrilled about is the gradient matching in the sleeves and body. She divided her fibre into five parts, three for the body and one for each sleeve.


Free patterns and projects

A selection of free seasonal patterns which will work well with handspun yarn.

Manor Garden woven scarf by Anu Bhatia

Manor Garden woven scarf by Anu Bhatia

This scarf uses deflected doubleweave to group warp and weft threads to form designs on the face and back of the fabric which are very different from each other.



melinoliesl has made this beautiful little pouch from handwoven fabric which was in turn made from her handspun yarn. it's perfect for your mask and a bottle of hand sanitiser.

She has used a free sewing pattern from Unikati.

The pattern is in German and you'll have to negotiate (and register on) a German website in order to obtain it. Don't be put off if you don't speak the language. I think all of the buttons (add to cart, go to checkout, download your pattern) are where you'd expect them.

With thanks to my sewing friend Patricia for confirming that you should be able to make the purse after printing the pattern (and with help from this video ) without understanding the text.

If I'm wrong and there is an English-language version, please tell me. Alternatively you may like to search the English-language where there are similar small bags and pouches.


Not-so-free patterns

Forêt by Eri Shimizu

Forêt by Eri Shimizu

This light top has an easy and delicate stitch, shallow V neck and box pleat cuff.

The pattern uses 4mm needles, you have the choice of using laceweight for a very light and airy top, or something more substantial for a thicker jumper.

The designer suggests holding together two laceweights of different colours and finding your own unique combination.

Level up your lace knitting

Level up your lace knitting

Perfectly-timed for the time of year, Interweave are celebrating lace knitting.

This article recommends some lace patterns ranging from 'perfect introductions', through 'next steps' to 'hoo boy!'

They are of course paid-for patterns from Interweave's range but it is a very good selection. Rather than pick one or two, I'll link to the article and let you browse them all.

Plicate by Hunter Hammersen

Plicate by Hunter Hammersen

I laughed when I saw this. But I get it.

Hunter is a perfectionist and wants the perfect slouch. Secret drawstrings in this hat allow you to achieve the correct amount of slouchiness without fussing in front of a mirror.

The hat in the picture is made from two very different yarns held together and it's a great effect.

The pattern calls for 175 - 250 yards, which I assume is the combined length (ie the same yardage of each yarn if you're combining),

Sadly the voucher code will have expired by the time you read this. As is often the case, these things only last a short time, not long enough to still be current for the next HSN.


But is it art...?

Artist Sanne Bax is reminiscing about this performance at the opening night of her exhibition in 2018. She is wearing a tufted lanscape.

A Massive catalogue of stitched CMYK studies by Evelin Kasikov

XXXX Swatchbook, by Evelin Kasikov

This project merges CMYK printing and embroidery.

Evelin Kasikov "catalogs primary, secondary, and tertiary colours, two-dozen combinations showing how rotation affects the final pigment, and a full spectrum of rich gradients".

The result is a French-folded book containing 400 swatches of colour entirely hand-embroidered in 219,647 stitches.

12 female fibre artists transforming space through textiles

Twelve female fibre artists transforming space through textiles

We're spoiled here by Marcia Veiga's collection of twelve artists working with textiles.

Some of the names have been mentioned in HSN, in fact Alexandra Kehayoglou, featured just above, is in the list.

With thanks to Jillian Moreno for recommending this list.


All that remains is for me to thank everyone who blogs, writes articles or posts pictures on the subject of spinning, knitting, crochet or weaving. This newsletter wouldn't exist without them.

If you enjoy Hand Spinning News, please do share a link to by email or on social media with anyone who may be interested. Obviously this full version is a benefit to you as a paying subscriber. An edited version of this particular issue will be mailed to free subscribers and visible at towards the end of the month.

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Happy spinning!

- Editor / curator

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