New Old Spinning Wheel…


My friend Mary sold me this old antique spinning wheel for a song.  I’m not sure if that is good or bad, because old spinning wheels can be SUCH CRANKY things!  I think it’s good, however, because my little woodcrafter Maggie has offered to clean it up and fix the broken bits for me.  I really don’t think it will be a production wheel for us, but I think it will be a nice example of old castle spinning wheels and will be useful if I start to offer workshops on fiber prep and spinning and such!  That would be nice.


I think as an artist in a field of ancient skills such as spinning and weaving, you are gifted with a lot of wonderful old artifacts of the times…  Folks expect you to be able to just plop down and start working on these things, but truth be told, some were made only for show.  Or for very specific tasks and are just hard to work into your new routines.  However, that doesn’t mean we don’t appreciate them and adore these elder tools of our new found craft.  I love the feel and patina of these antiques.  I can imagine them being used a hundred years ago, by some young woman learning to spin or her elderly grandmother helping out the family with warm yarn for sweaters and caps.  It’s a part of our whole human experience and I just adore thinking about what these old wheels and looms have lived through!


I’m sure that it will be a while before this little wheel gets her time to be worked on because Maggie is very busy with her new company, making fiber art tools and such.  But winter is coming and it’s a great time to work on these little projects.   We decided to call her Aurora, after Sleeping Beauty!  This wheel is called a castle wheel and might have had a distaff, which is where the princess Aurora is said to prick her finger and fall into her 100 year sleep!  We like it.  Yes, we name all our antique tools.  We feel they have a life.  And it’s easier for us to identify each one instead of saying things like, “Oh, the spinning wheel, no, the old one, no, the castle upright old one, yeah, that one… ”  haha…  Everyone knows Queenie, Harold, Rosie, Ikea and Gracie.   Now, we have Aurora.  :-)

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About Mobymom

the banjo player for Deepwater Bluegrass, and the editor of as well as the main graphic designer of the Westvon Publishing empire. She is a renaissance woman of many talents and has two lovely daughters and a rehab mobile home homestead to raise.

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