Greetings! Under the heading of "more new stuff at the shop", Thursday I got in the Schacht-Reeves spinning wheel. Fairly easy to assemble (except they really need to update the manual to allow for what they are currently assembling at the wood shop that you don't have to assemble yourself), this wheel takes a bit of adjusting at first, but once it is dialed in it is very nice to spin on. This is my first time spinning on a Saxony (actually, it's a Norwegian style) wheel, and it is more comfortable for me than the castle type, as I can hold my hands parallel instead of right in front of left, which makes my shoulders ache after a couple hours.
The wheel I have in the shop is a 24" made of ash, double treadle, with the flyer on the right. I will be able to order a Schacht-Reeves for anyone who wants one, but I cannot stock them as there are sixteen different possible configurations when you allow for wheel size (24 or 30 inches), single or double treadle, left or right-hand flyer, and ash or cherry wood. This would make having the right wheel for any given customer a bit tricky unless I carried one of each configuration, and you can imagine the cost of that.
However, I now have at least one of each wheel currently produced by Schacht: Ladybug, Sidekick, Matchless and Schacht-Reeves. Any time you want you can give any of the wheels a test "drive". I encourage anyone considering buying a wheel to test drive it as much and as many times as necessary for you to be sure it is the wheel you want; my goal is to provide you with the right wheel, not just any wheel.
I also received a Navajo spindle - which is used for thigh spinning - and a pear tahkli for use with short staple fibers and very fine spinning. I also stock extra bobbins, the Schacht adjustable niddy-noddy, wheel oil, and wool carders. As always, anything Schacht makes that I do not have in stock can be ordered for you.
Worth noting: I have brochures in the shop for the TNNA Weavers' Retreat at the end of April, if anyone is interested. It is very reasonably priced.
Under the heading of "etc.", we have knitting superstitions, as posted in the Windy City Knitting Guild newsletter today (with my editorials in purple):
1. It's bad luck to leave a project unfinished. The intended recipient will get bad luck from the unfinished item. I think it is actually bad luck for the knitter, who will doubtless say "I'll remember where I left off" and we all know down that road lies madness.
2. Stabbing your needles through your yarn balls brings bad luck to anyone who wears something made from that yarn. Not true - my ex-husband is still alive.
3. Don't knit a pair of socks for your boyfriend or he'll walk away from you. No ring - no knitting, period.
4. If you knit one of your own hairs into a garment, it will bind the recipient to you. Does this apply to cat hair? Is that why they follow me all over the house?
5. Knitting for children you may have in the future, but before you are pregnant, is bad luck (it may prevent one from getting pregnant, or bring ill health to the baby). Or it may be the only opportunity you have to knit without spit-up on your yarn.
6. Don't stop knitting when you are only on the cast-on row or the project will never be finished.
7. Cast-on for your next project immediately after finishing one. It's bad luck for your needles to be empty. I'm good with this one.
8. When knitting a pair of socks, the second sock must be started immediately after casting off the first and finishing the first must be postponed until the knitter has time to cast-off, and cast-on the next sock at the same sitting. Matching socks are over-rated.
9. Knitting as a voodoo doll -- ripping out your knitting while picturing someone you don't like is a way to "hex" them. See #2.
10.Never HAND knitting needles to a friend, they can stab the friendship. Put them down and let the friend pick them up. This could become a source of misunderstanding - "I swear I wasn't stealing your needles; I thought you wanted me to pick them up".
Knit / spin / weave happy!