On Tuesday, January 28th the Potluck Spinners and Weavers met for a day of
spinning in Canning, Nova Scotia. We were all a bit stir crazy, as the snow
had been falling for what seemed like weeks. And what a day it turned out
I arrived to find freelance reporter Jodie DeLong cozied down in one of
Marilyn’s comfortable chairs. Jodie writes the local Canning Gazette, and
contributes to the Chronicle Herald, which is essentially the provincial
newspaper. She had her notebook in hand, and her digital and 35mm cameras
at her side. She had many questions, and even more funny stories to tell.
We may not hook her on spinning, but she is sure there is much more research
to be done for her article. I believe the food and the laughter had
something to do with it.
A couple of weeks ago I had received an email from Louise Lortie from Prince
Edward Island. She and her fellow spinner Elaine Schuller thought they
might make it to one of our potlucks late in January. I didn’t hear from
them again, so assumed that the weather had kept them Island bound. How
excited I was to hear from Pia that Elaine had called her at 6am to ask how
the weather was here in Nova Scotia. Elaine and Louise would hit the road
around 7am to make the four hour drive to the Valley.
Just in time for lunch (I’m sure they planned it that way 🙂 they arrived
with wheels and all. What a joy to sit around the long harvest table with
Louise, Elaine, Pia and Jali, listening to their gorgeous French voices. I
could understand most everything they said, but it breaks my heart that
after 10 years away from my French education, I am terrified to speak, as
the words don’t want to come out. There was much discussion about weaving
and spinning terms in French. It seems that technical terms are the most
difficult, especially if you’ve learned your craft in English. They all did
agree though, that even if they knew the proper French translation for
kniddy knoddy, they’d still use the English, the word is just too fun.
Having Jali Giroux sitting beside me at her wheel was certainly the best
part of my day. Jali lives five minutes from me. She is the most
incredible fibre artist. Creating intricate fabric covers for small books,
embroidered with intricate designs and embellished with fine beadwork, so
incredible. She is also partial to spinning silk, in a myriad of colours,
and knits the finest hats and shawls, which she takes the Wolfville Farmers
Market every Saturday from May to October. I don’t get to Jali very much,
so having her there was a real treat.
Ken Cavanagh brought along his two pieces of weaving for Jodie to
photograph. One was a small tartan that he wove himself, and the other was
a blanket for his wife, Muriel. The blanket was picked, carded and spun by
Ken, dyed by our Tuesday hostess Marilyn and woven by our wild Danish
weaving woman Pia. This was all done very secretly in the months leading up
to Christmas, although Muriel was a bit suspicious.
Our newest member Sharon Lynk arrived after lunch, with Joanne Harvie in
toe. Joanne, who met us at the public spinning in December is well on her
way as a spinner. She has mastered the drop spindle she got from Pia, and
has now moved on to a brand new Ashford Traveller. She spent the afternoon
learning about tension adjustments. We were sad to miss her husband
Richard, who was at home building a cabinet to house her wool, which she
expects to fill quickly. He is also planning to build her a wheel based
loosely on a Louet, what a guy.
Another fine spinning day. I have posted a couple of pictures on my web
Wolfville, Nova Scotia