On Books and Spinning

After a slightly longer break than I intended, here is the next in my series of book reviews.

When I started spindling back in the summer of 2010  I was going it alone, using blogs and youtube as my main teacher.  The first spinning book I bought was Respect the Spindle by Abby Franquenmont, it along with the DVD are the BEST resource for spindlers.  Abby has been spinning since she was a child living in the Andes of Peru.

When I added a wheel I thought I needed a few more resources, and I think if I could only have one of these books I would be in a toss up between the Alden Amos Big Book of Handspinning  and Spin Control.

Alden Amos has written the Fleece and Fiber Sourcebook of spinning; he has answers to questions you never knew you had and if I were stuck on a desert island with a spinning wheel and only one book this would be it.

Spin Control by contrast has less detail but has pictures of all the things a person needs to know to really start understanding spinning, and has the best instruction for spinning I have found yet. It takes a beginning spinner beyond the OMG I am spinning wool stage through different techiniques and includes instructions on washing, blocking and setting wool, something many other books I have found just skim over, metioning it offhand like it something  new spinner should know how to do automatically.

A few others like Spinning Wool: Beyond the Basics, The Intentional Spinner and Get Spun are still on my shelf (although Spinning Wool may get donated to my local library), but I would be much more likely to let them out on longterm loan, as opposed Alden and Spin Control, which I use on a fairly regular basis. Although the flow chart in The Intentional Spinner about how to adjust your wheel is a very, very useful one, when you can’t remember which way makes your wheel increase takeup or increase twist.

As a side note, there are patterns in all these books except for Alden Amos, and while it is a nice feature, I didn’t buy these books for their patterns, and probably won’t ever make any of them.  All the patterns seem well designed and layed out, however for me they are mostly dead weight.

I’m still on a hunt for a good art yarn book, I have been considering Spin Art by Jacey Boggs, which is due to be released in January. I found that Get Spun didn’t really work for me, but it is a good book.

What spinning books do you think I should have on my shelf?

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