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Fibre tools made to order

 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
14
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Greetings from the frozen north of Sweden!

First, apologies for the unpolished appearance of this post. Despite getting lots of great advice from some of the lovely admins here at Permies, I'm still a lot better at making tools than I am at understanding how to code!

So, onto what I DO understand...

Some years ago, I started getting interested in spinning and working with yarn, but lacked the basic tools for learning. Being a lifelong fan of self-reliance, the obvious thing was to make the things I needed, in the style I wanted.

After a few false starts, I was happy with what I'd made and so were my friends. Now, roll forward a handful of years and these little devices are becoming an increasingly important part of my journey into full self-sufficiency. I'm proud to say that the items you see here are now in the hands of people in Sweden, England, Australia, North and South America, Canada and Singapore.

My workshop is off-grid, with electricity provided by a combination of solar, wind and human power.
All the materials I use are locally grown, sustainably hunted and/or recycled. I even have a certain amount of naturally-shed antler, for anyone who likes the aesthetics but not the hunting.

The pictures that follow are a small sample of my recent work. I also make other things, some of which can be seen on my instagram page.

Everything is made to order and comes with a lifetime guarantee. If anything with my mark is broken or fails to perform as expected, I will repair, replace or refund it without question.

Just drop me a purple moosage and tell me what you're after!
General questions should go here in the thread, so others can get the answers too of course.

I also enjoy a challenge, so if you think of anything you'd like made, let me know 🤠
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Anne Miller
master steward
Posts: 5087
Location: USDA Zone 8a
1557
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Tony, thanks for sharing.

I am no longer able to work with yarns though I want to say I enjoyed looking at your beautiful tools.

Great pictures!

I wish you the best for your endevor!
 
Nikki Corey
Posts: 36
Location: South Texas
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Those are so pretty that I’m tempted to buy some even though I have no earthly idea what to do with them! Really beautiful work; well done.
 
Lara Bigotti
pollinator
Posts: 92
Location: Montana
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Absolutely beautiful! Your work is really exquisite. I can see all of the time and effort you must have put into your craft, but they still look effortlessly done! Love the last picture. I hope you get to share lots of your beautiful things with people around the world.
 
Stephanie Meyer
Posts: 73
Location: West Michigan Zone 5
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Those are so amazing, the kind of tools that brings joy just to handle or look at.

Even though I need to take up a new craft like I need another hole in my head, about how much are you charging for things like the drop spindles and what does shipping run to North America ?
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 23095
Location: Left Coast Canada
6785
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I'm so getting one of these!  
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
14
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Stephanie Meyer wrote: ...how much are you charging for things like the drop spindles and what does shipping run to North America ?



The Turkish-style drop spindles (my personal favourite to use) are made from wood, bone, antler and combinations of those. The lightest I've made so far was 19g and the heaviest around 50g. My favourites are around 30g.

Prices range from 500kr for an all-wood one up to 1200kr for a custom decorated, large bone one. All are fitted with Birch wood shafts.
Postage is of course extra and generally comes to around 200kr

I check the exchange rates each time I get an enquiry and today that means a basic wood Turk would cost $84 US inclusive.

Thanks so much for all the lovely comments by the way!
 
Cate Weaver
Posts: 16
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Your tools are lovely!  So functional yet beautiful.
Other suggestions (for diversification into weaving tools):
a weavers sword
backstrap spacers
tapestry beaters
small shuttles
 
Cécile Stelzer Johnson
pollinator
Posts: 616
Location: zone 4b, sandy, Continental D
185
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These are indeed exquisitely made. i wish I knew more about textile weaving but even knowing nothing about it, I can appreciate the work that went into it and I wish you the very best on your endeavor.
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
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Cate Weaver wrote:Your tools are lovely!  So functional yet beautiful.
Other suggestions (for diversification into weaving tools):
a weavers sword
backstrap spacers
tapestry beaters
small shuttles



Thank you so much !

If you'd like to post some pictures of what you have in mind (either here or in a purple moosage), I'd be delighted to expand my repertoire 😃
 
John Dunlap
Posts: 6
1
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Beautiful work. I was just wondering what kind of lathe you are using. I don't really have time to learn a new craft at the moment, but you've given me reason to find some. It's a bit out of my wheelhouse, but I'm just going to have to make a Turkish spindle now.
 
John Duffy
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Tony, your tools are beautiful! Even if I didn't know anything about wooden tools, your passion for quality would still be blatantly evident. What is your favorite wood to work with? Wood is so soothing to work with
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
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John Dunlap wrote:Beautiful work. I was just wondering what kind of lathe you are using. I don't really have time to learn a new craft at the moment, but you've given me reason to find some. It's a bit out of my wheelhouse, but I'm just going to have to make a Turkish spindle now.



I'm using a rather beaten up Clarke wood lathe (CWL20 RV to be exact) It's not as precise or fancy as those used by most spindle makers, but it's the workhorse I'm used to and I kind of enjoy the challenge of figuring out how to get the best from its limitations.

I also have a medieval-style pole lathe which I want to start using more in the future.

I highly recommend making yourself a Turkish spindle, they're such a great design. If you want to drop me a moosage, I'll happily share tips about proportions and things.
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
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John Duffy wrote:Tony, your tools are beautiful! Even if I didn't know anything about wooden tools, your passion for quality would still be blatantly evident. What is your favorite wood to work with? Wood is so soothing to work with



Thanks so much! I absolutely believe in quality; my most prized possessions are tools which were made before rampant capitalism and the concept of 'planned obsolescence'. I know my lifetime guarantee means taking responsibility in a way that is quite alien to people these days, but that's why I'm a Permie 😉

I can't really say that I have a favourite wood, each has its own properties which work in different settings. When we moved here from England,  I realised how spoiled for choice I had been before. There are so many species that it felt like the work of a lifetime to learn them all!
Here in the north of Sweden the choices are much more limited; locally we have Birch, 'Goat' Willow, Aspen, Alder and Rowan, as well as the two conifers, Spruce and Pine.

A lot of my crafts make use of Birch; it has a straight grain, some flexibility and is reasonably dense. All my spindle shafts are made from it.
The 'wings' of the Turkish spindles benefit from higher density, so the woods for those are often salvaged from second-hand shops (Oak or Beech, which grows in the south and is found in old chairs and beds)

This far north, everything grows quite slowly, so the Willow for example has higher density than I expected. It also tends to have lovely colours and takes wax polish very well. You can see that on some of the support spindles (like the 'bunch' in the steel cup)

I hope that little ramble gives some insight into my strange world!
 
H Uilis
Posts: 28
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Those are amazingly beautiful!!! I am sending this straight to my better half and asking for some for my birthday.
 
Wendy Boardman
Posts: 14
Location: Southern WV
4
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What a wonderful talent you have. We have much in common, I am a self taught spinner of alpaca & any natural plant fiber I can find. 🤗. In the beginning, I couldn't find any local tools to use. So I made them myself. It was very interesting research , I have learned a lot. Your spindles are a work of art. Would like to learn how to use the kind with the 'wings' or criss cross pieces.
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
14
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Wendy Boardman wrote:What a wonderful talent you have. We have much in common, I am a self taught spinner of alpaca & any natural plant fiber I can find. 🤗. In the beginning, I couldn't find any local tools to use. So I made them myself. It was very interesting research , I have learned a lot. Your spindles are a work of art. Would like to learn how to use the kind with the 'wings' or criss cross pieces.



Indeed, very similar 😁 bizarrely, the very beginning for me was when a work colleague asked if it was possible to make yarn out of her dog's fur! Thank you so much for the lovely comment too !

My wife actually made two short videos about using Turkish spindles. She's speaking Swedish, but it's quite easy to follow what's going on anyway. I'll try to add links to them here...





If that worked, the first is about starting to spin, the second is about plying from the ball. This is one thing I love about them; they give you a centre-feed ball, so plying is easy, just find both ends, reattach them to the spindle and go for it 😊

If the links don't work, our channel is called 'Fam Chelonia'. Interesting fact; my craft business is named Chelonia (the taxonomic name for tortoises, terrapins and turtles), because my first childhood pets were tortoises.
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
14
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H Uilis wrote:Those are amazingly beautiful!!! I am sending this straight to my better half and asking for some for my birthday.



Thank you 😊 I look forward to the moosage!
 
Tony Hedgewolf
Posts: 26
Location: Västerbotten, Sweden
14
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Well, it happened and I'm incredibly flattered...
Our illustrious (and industrious) leader, R Ranson commissioned me to make a little Turkish spindle.

Weighing in at a sprightly 26g, I really enjoyed spinning a small test cop on it. A rather speedy wee thing, it's made from reclaimed Oak and Teak, matched up to a locally-grown Birch shaft. I hope it will make its new owner very happy!

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r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 23095
Location: Left Coast Canada
6785
3
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So beautiful!  I can't wait!  
 
r ranson
master steward & author
Posts: 23095
Location: Left Coast Canada
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My spindle arrived.   It is beautiful!

Photos to come when I have done some more spinning.  
 
Carla Burke
master gardener
Posts: 2778
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Tony, do you also make needles for nalbinding?
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