Some may have noted that I have a slight…interest…with researching yurts, Central Asia, nomads, the Silk Road, etc. Some may also have noted that I also have a tendency towards fiber tools and fiber. In the past couple of weeks some of the research I’ve been working on has worked it’s way into being a rough but extremely useful fiber tool. I’m really tickled. Rurik and I worked together. I did the research, pattern development, testing, critique, string tyeing, and held things. He did the screwing, drilling, cutting, chiseling, and glueing. It was actually a really fun date night and following day:>. I have no doubt that the next one will take less time for the initial set up.
Here is the first of what I hope to be several better made Spindles Wheels. The origin of the Spinning Wheel was either India or China and is a hotly debated topic but the tech of these original wheels can be found in various styles thru out the Silk Road areas. There are only a few illustrations of these wheels in period but I feel that this design holds with the basics of those illustrations and with commonly used Asian style wheels. These wheels made their way into Europe and underwent various changes to give us out modern European type wheels as well as historical Great Wheels. In India the Spindle Wheel, known as a Charhka, became the focal point of Ghandi’s nonviolent movement to win freedom from Britain. There are a number of styles of the upright spindle wheels still in use thru out India, Asia, Central Asia, and some Islamic counties.
Here is our first Spindle Wheel. I need to learn how to do this better and come out with a more finished wheel. That being said it spins like a dream and I can spin high quality silk embroidery thread on it already. I’m tickled to have a wheel that will be appropriate for my persona use within the SCA context:>. It is traditionally used for Silk reeling, spinning, cotton, and winding bobbins so this one tool provides multiple functions. I like to sit on the floor with it either in front or beside me to spin. The sound of the fiber on the point is very soothing and spinning on this wheel can provide a very calming experience:>.
The wheel itself is made out of inexpensive soft wood and cost $19.54 in supplies. I used knitting needles given to me by a friend and wooden wheels I had on hand from Michael’s as well. The string was also from stash.