A Kind Legacy: How I Inherited a Bounty of Unspun Fiber
Last week, I had the wonderful opportunity to take an introductory weaving class at Harrisville Designs - taught by the amazing Tom Jipson. I learned how to warp and weave several patterns on a little 22" floor loom, and it was one of the best fiber experiences of my life. I enjoyed myself thoroughly. You can see a bit of my process over on my Instagram @melodyfulonefiberartist, and Harrisville even shared my work on their own Instagram @harrisvilledesigns!
During this class, I received a call from a friend of a friend, whom I had met at the IF Gathering this spring and again at a Bible conference later in the summer. She told me a patient of hers was looking to donate fiber, both unspun and spun, to someone who would use it. This patient had just had her husband pass away, and he was apparently a big deal in the textile world. Not an artist exactly, but a textile quality control guru. He had many accomplishments and involvements connected with his name, and when he passed away, he left behind boxes and boxes of fiber. She wanted them to go to someone who would use them. I had just learned how to spin on a simple drop spindle, and I'm always looking to expand my collection of high-quality materials, so I called her and we set up a meeting.
That Saturday, I drove down to Rhode Island and to her beautiful house by the river. She was the sweetest lady, with shiny bangles and a kind face. I went through boxes and boxes of this amazing stuff, and filled a few boxes and bags of my own. My apartment won't allow for much expansion in my materials collection, but I couldn't bear to take less than four boxes. (Four... kind of big boxes).
How wonderful is this? My plan is to spin most if not all of the fiber into yarn that I will then use in my weavings and textiles. (Granted, cashmere fiber is notoriously difficult to spin because it has almost no staple, but we'll get past that little roadblock.) I also hope to use the actual yarn for projects too. This is incredibly beautiful stuff that I'm privileged to use in my work. People are kind and thoughtful, and I've made another friend in the fiber arts world that I'll be sharing my work with. Stay tuned!