It seemed very natural for my curiosity to move from knitting to the process behind creating materials of my trade. I wanted to learn how to spin yarn... not only that, but also how to process wool and other fibers into workable yarn for use in the fiber arts. I fell in love with the beauty of spinning while visiting the Shaker community in Hancock, Massachusetts. This trip was followed by a short trek through Pennsylvania's Welsh barony where I encountered the famous sheep grazing the graveyard at the historic St. Peter's Church in the Great Valley.
Shortly after those trips, I ordered some raw fleece from a local shepherd and learned how to process the wool into yarn. A lot of baths for the wool in hot, soapy water and picking it clean of vegetable matter yielded something I could card and finally spin up.
I first learned how to spin on simple drop spindles. They function like tops, spinning to add twist into the wool to strengthen the fibers by locking them together. It wasn't until later that I first bought a spinning wheel. Spinning fiber is meditative process. The rhythmic spinning of the spindle or the treadling of the spinning wheel, while focusing on drafting out the proper bits of fiber, clear the mind and keep the spinner in the moment.