Tools for spinning yarn

Spinning tools
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Happy Distaff Day! To celebrate, I’m sharing information about the tools I use in my spinning practice.

Spinning oil: Keeping your wheel oiled will make spinning smoother and more fun.

Basket: I like a medium-sized basket with handles for keeping my un-spun fiber and tools handy while spinning.

Spinners Control Card: Quickly assess the thickness of your singles as you’re spinning to be sure you are creating a consistent yarn.

Bobbins Up: Use a power drill to wind finished singles onto these innovative storage bobbins.

More information on Distaff Day from Telling History and The Book of Days.


  • I’m intrigued by the Bobbins Up but don’t quite understand what the are. Spare plastic bobbins to free up the bobbins that go on your wheel? So you would wind off your spun up yarn from a wheel bobbin onto one of these?

    • Exactly. You can’t use the Bobbins Up on your spinning wheel, but they cost $5 each as opposed to $50 each, so they’re useful for storage and plying. Instead of winding by hand (as with a bobbin winder that some weavers use) a power drill makes the process faster.

      I find I have to brace the drill with the bobbin attached on my lap and use my free hand to guide the spun singles yarn onto the bobbin so that it is spread over the spool evenly and with the right amount of tension. The added advantage of re-winding your bobbins before plying is that it also evens out the twist in the single.

      • That is fascinating! What a great idea. I don’t spin often enough to have experienced a bobbin shortage (and I LURVE to ply so bobbins are freed up pretty quickly) but this is great to know about. Thanks for sharing!

      • Thanks! I think the advantage to spinning more singles and plying them randomly is that you can get a more balanced batch of yarn than if you ply Bobbin 1 with Bobbin 2, 3 with 4, etc. This is especially helpful if you’re spinning for a larger project like a garment or blanket.

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