Saturday, December 8, 2007
Pirtle spinning wheel & new projects
Over the past few days, I have been trying some new things. I acquired the Kaffe Fassett Pattern Library book and have been experimenting with learning how to do intarsia work. The intricacy of his design concepts really appeal to my love of color and design. I can see that it will take some experimenting to get the color contrasting and blending together in this knitting medium but in the long run it should be very rewarding. Nothing like swatching to be able to play with technique without a big commitment. Additionally, I have started another vest using the modular techniques I love so well. This one should go together really fast.
Finally, I have taken some photos of a Pirtle spinning wheel so that people can see what they look like. This wheel was built by Paul and Beverly Pirtle(who lived in Huntington Beach, CA in the 1970s.) They only built about 200 wheels and contrary to internet lore the wheel was not built in a hippie commune but in their garage studio. The beauty of this wheel is the fact that it has no hooks and also has a one inch orifice as well as huge bobbins which will hold up to 2.2 lbs of spun yarn. They made two flyers (one high speed for fine spinning and a bulk flyer for really chunky spinning.) In my opinion, they were way ahead of their time in the design of this wheel. Unfortunately, they no longer make wheels and have retired from the spinning and weaving marketplace. In light of all the current art yarn and novelty yarn spinning going on, this is an ideal wheel for the making of these kinds of yarns. I also have their original paperwork including use instructions and catalog on this wheel. So, if you have a wheel and want more info, contact me.