It seems like there are more spinning books every day.
But spindle-specific books are rare, like hens' teeth. In fact, since 2009, I've heard of four new books. Please, correct me if I'm wrong! Those four are:
1) Productive Spindling (by me, Amelia Garripoli)
2) Respect the Spindle (Abby Franquemont)
3) Fleegle Spins Supported (Susan Glinert Stevens)
4) Spinning Exotic Fibers with Russian and Tibetan Spindles (Caroline Sommerfeld)
However, there are more. Any book on spinning contains information useful to a spindle spinner. The Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook by Deb Robson is an obvious (and terrific!) resource for a spindler.
I want you to also consider Sarah Anderson's fabulous book: The Spinner's Book of Yarn Designs. It is chock full of techniques usable by a spindler to create new yarns. Anderson starts out by describing fiber processing and basic drafting techniques. Then she covers the gamut of singles yarn and dives into plied constructions.
Spindles are great for all sorts of singles yarn: thick, thin, thick-and-thin are all very spindle-able. And spindles are well suited to plying with even tension. I admit, a boucle' on a spindle is challenging, though it has been done. Boucle' uses uneven tension on the singles -- for me, that means park-and-ply. Others have devised ways to do it as well. But there are so many yarn constructions that use even tension while plying, that you may never need to explore that. Cable, Hawser, Energized 3-ply: these are all very spindle-able yarns, and just the tip of the plying iceberg!
I teach plying on the wheel and on the spindle. Wheel spinners take yarn construction in stride. They spin singles thick and thin, in either direction; and they will ply in whichever direction I ask, reaching their final yarn with almost no surprise at their accomplishment. Spindle spinners are amazed: they get 2-ply and 3-ply, but often hadn't considered their spindle for a cable, much less for a hawser or more complex construction. It's like I've shown them a part of the yarniverse they had not considered open to them before. I am thrilled to shine a light on unexplored territory for them.
So, pick up The Spinner's Book of Yarn Design, your spindle, and some fiber, and explore. You may just create a whole new yarn!
This article © 2013 Amelia Garripoli, Ask The Bellwether.
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