Long Draw Spinning Workshop

May’s meeting saw Freyalyn Close Hainsworth’s workshop on ‘How to Spin Longdraw from Perfect Rolags’


Freyalyn explained that longdraw spinning produced a light and airy fabric from a bouncy, elastic yarn. The lightness being created by air trapped in the fibre during the ‘woollen’ (as opposed to ‘worsted’) spinning process. Worsted spinning produces a smooth, dense yarn.

There are several good books to help demystify these terms (try the Guild library or a second hand book-site like Abebooks.com (subsidiary of Amazon)

Mabel Ross ‘Encyclopaedia of Handspinning’
Eileen Chadwick ‘The Craft of Handspinning
Eliza Leadbeater ‘Handspinning’
Paula Simmons ‘Spinning for Lightness and Speed’ (she calls longdraw ‘one handed spinning’)

Handcarders come in all shapes and sizes, explained Freyalyn and she stressed the importance of keeping them clean.

It is most important to use the smallest amount of fibre and to produce the lightest, airiest rolag possible taking care not to ‘hook’ the fibres around the teeth of the carders.

The correct tension of the wheel is vital. It may be necessary to adjust the drive band or the scotch tension to set up the lowest possible tension while still allowing the fibre to draw onto the bobbin.

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