>> Thursday, December 03, 2009
I forgot to mention, these beautiful knitting needles are from The Purple Purl, my new local knitting shop
As you know, I'm now a little spinning obsessed. I've bought a couple of spindles, because I love what they can do, and there are so many beautiful ones out there, plus it's a bit like knitting, you need extra ones so you can have more than one project on the go.
But I wanted more, and decided to figure out how I could make one myself. There's a few tutorials online, such as a cd spindle (just Google it for examples), this one made from a cardboard circle and a pencil, or even a potato on a stick. This is a good way to learn so that you can decide if you like spinning before you invest too much money. (If this has already happened feel free to mail me any spindles you don't want anymore. Just kidding. Sort of.)
My favourite idea is a drop spindle made from a wooden knob. Abby Franquemont's video Drop Spindle Basics shows you how to learn to spin with a low whorl drop spindle that is just a drawer pull (wooden knob) attached to a dowel.
I wanted to make one that was a little bit fancier, functional and even nice looking, while still not requiring any real woodworking skills. The results were better than I expected, and these handmade spindles work really well! The big trick was to use carved wooden knitting needles which added a nice decorative detail to the top and a smooth polished surface that tapers. But of course a piece of dowel is fine too.
Assemble your supplies. I used wooden knitting needles, vintage wooden knobs (in a variety of weights) from an antique store, a power drill, a scrap block of wood, hooks, pliers and wood glue.Step 2:
Use the pliers to open up the hooks. These ones have a triangular shape so that the yarn stays in place a bit better than a round hook.
Place the wooden knob on the piece of scrap wood so that you protect the work surface when you drill right through the knob. Make sure you drill right through the centre.Step 4:
Add wood glue to the top of the knitting needle (or dowel). Place the knob on the needle or dowel and let the glue dry.Wood glue starts out white but will dry clear:Step 5:
Drill a tiny pilot hole in the top of your knitting needle (or dowel). Use the smallest drill bit you have. Screw in the eyelet.
If you like you can saw a notch in the side of your whorl.
These are two of my finished spindles. They work beautifully!