The Third Wheel.

It has been some months since I’ve had a chat with you about spinning yarn… I happen to know it has been this long because I remember vaguely, quite some time ago, telling you all about my new spinning wheel and saying I would introduce you.  I still haven’t done that.

The new wheel travelled in the car with us from Wellington to Whangarei, it listened to Raymond yowling for 12 hours, it was one of the few possessions we bought in the car because I simply did not trust removal men with it.  One knob knocked off renders it useless until repaired by someone who knows what they’re doing, and being that my new wheel is in prefect condition despite being four years older than me, I wasn’t taking any chances with it.

I’m not actually going to introduce you to my new wheel in today’s post… I’m going to introduce you to the NEXT new wheel.  Oh yes… I am spoiled rotten… I have a third wheel.  Except I only have two as I returned the Magic Wheel to my Mum when the second wheel was purchased.  So it is my second, second wheel.

How my second wheel came into my life is quite an amazing story and I still can’t quite believe what a blessing it was.  A couple of Mondays ago I was at work (my new work remember, six weeks on the job and my colleagues don’t quite know the extent of my yarn madness… no-one does if they don’t suffer from it themselves after all…) and my lovely colleague asked me what I did on the weekend. 

“oh, you know… a bit of knitting, a bit of crochet and some spinning” I said….

“I’ve got a spinning wheel under my house.”  He said.  “My ex left it there years ago and it’s stored under my bedroom and I sometimes get scared it’ll start spinning itself and be all freaky.  You can have it if you want it, he bought it and never even used it”

I’m desperately trying not to start hyperventilating with excitement here and try to come off all casual when I say “oh wow!  What type of spinning wheel is it?”

“ummmm…. a spinning wheel…”  he says… “you put your foot on the pedal and the wheel goes around and then this other bit starts spinning too!”

Excellent, I have just established that it is working.  Cue more excitement….

“WOW!  Thank you!  I can really just have it?!”

“Totally, it has been under my house for six years!”

So KB and I went to pick up the wheel.  I didn’t let myself get my hopes up just in case it didn’t work…. We got it from under the house and cleaned six years of dust and some spiders off it and then gave it a nice polish.  And I am so blown away…. lucky, lucky me.

It is an Ashford Traditional…. Exciting as I have never used a traditional wheel before, and I love it.  KB felt like an archaeologist when she cleaned the dust off and found the Ashford stamp of Ashfordy goodness….

 As it has been stored for so long, all of the metal bits are rusty so I’m planning to replace the flyer with a jumbo flyer which holds more than 50gms of wool at a time…..

But for now, it is ace and I’m loving spinning yarn on my third wheel.

I am blown away by the gratitude of my lovely colleague and friend… knitted gifts are coming his way as well as Friday night drinks on an off-pay week.  I’ve said thank you about a million times, but am saying it here in public too!

On my wheel right now is some og my Mum’s homegrown Romney, I’ve spun it before and it is so lovely and rustic… I’ve been having a bit of bad luck with spinning lately, issues with breaky singles and underplying.  It has been bumming me out and even making me cry with frustration on the odd occasion, so I thought I would go back to the very basics and spin some undyed, earthy, homegrown fleece.  I’m going to knit a lovely cuddly cabled shawl with it, and as I’m spinning I’m designing it in my mind’s eye.  It’s a long term very sloooooooooow yarn project.

A few weeks ago i had the most amazing parcel arrive in the post for me from a spinner friend back home in Wellington.  Wow, I actually am marvelling at the generous people in my life right now, sooooooooo lucky am I…. of course KB, Raymond and I organised a parcel to send back to her and one of the little things we put in was one of KB’s watercolours.  Seeing as we are discussing spinning today, it fits with the theme… I love it, KB is so cute…

Before I sign off for this post I must show you this gorgeous book which arrived in the post for me today.  A gift from me to me. 

A couple of weeks ago I was at the library and found a knitting book I had never seen before!  I got it out and took it home, flicked through a few pages and immediately logged onto the computer and bought a copy.  Just like that.  Within about 2 minutes, that is how much I loved this book.  No remorse, just excitement about having a copy of my very own, forever.

have you seen this book?

It is totally adorable and I love it.  All the details are here if you need a copy too!  The toys are just gorgeous and the page layout, just the cutest.  I’m thinking Simon the Snake will be the first on my needles…. KB loves the Pussy Cat from the Owl and the Pussy Cat…

But my favourite, the one who had me hook, line and sinker before I had even OPENED the book was the Frog Prince…

He is just toooooooo adorable.  The author and pattern designer is a genius, I love this book.

Anyway, the sun is going down so I’m off for a walk… it’s too hot to move until sunset right now!  I must say, I’m getting quite excited about the idea of chillier, snugglier weather right now!

Have an ace day,

lots of love from Alice and Raymond XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

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About Crochet with Raymond

I'm a crochet obsessed, reiki master, crystal healing, yoga junkie, counselling student, in a happy long term relationship... and Raymond's mum!
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47 Responses to The Third Wheel.

  1. Melanie from Qld, Australia says:

    Alice, thank you so much for another delightful and interesting post. You have a wonderful way with words and I always feel quite cheered up and enthusiastic after reading one of your posts. I’ve resurrected my knitting and crochet skills after a more than 20 years lull and I must say I’m loving it so much. Another wonderful book is The Gentle Art of Knitting by Jane Brocket. I made one of the few crochet patterns in the book – the Starburst Flower Blanket. It looks spectacular and I’m quite chuffed each time I walk past the chair its draped over.

  2. sarah says:

    gorgeous wheel, i am looking forward to seeing what friends you knit for raymond!! he is such a beautiful boy

  3. Jay says:

    Alice I really think we should start a knitting group at work LOL…I love the frog! Viva le grenouille!

  4. There is an antique shop here with a wheel in their window. I keep dropping hints to my family but will probablly have to buy it myself LOL. What a fantastic thing to have such a beauty just given to you.

  5. Colette says:

    I love it when things like that happen. My sister is now the proud owner of an Ashford wheel as a result of a conversation I had. The person was just grateful to get rid of the dust collecting thing in the corner of the room (again left by an ex!)

    have a good week. Cold wet and damp here in the UK.

  6. Esther says:

    Ooooh, very fairytail like isn’t it! Will this mean we can buy homespun yarn from you soon? Do you also have sheep for the wool?
    Esther.

  7. Planet Penny says:

    What amazing things people keep under their beds. I’m so glad it came your way, what a beauty. Thanks for the link to the book. My sister is looking for a cat pattern and I think the one featured is really cute, and if I have to look at the the book for a while before I see her, w-e-l-l, ho hum!
    I imagine little Pixie is going to have every one of those knitted toys!

    love Penny xxx

  8. Ali G says:

    I looooove your new spinning wheel. My aunt is an amazing spinner and has a couple of gorgeous wheels. Unfortunately she’s in Oamaru and not at hand to teach me, but I would so love to learn.

    And I have to say that book looks divine! The elephant is adorable and I must fight the urge to find/buy the book and knit the elephant – I love the vintage fabric on the ears and feet, too cute!! ♥

  9. Dori says:

    Wow! Lucky you – an Ashford Traditional. I can’t wait to see all the gorgeous stuff you spin on it. Maybe using your new wheel will be enough of a difference from your other wheel to get you happily spinning again.

  10. Debs says:

    Alice, you are such a beautiful person, it is only right that gifts such as the spinning wheel come your way, as if by magic. The Universe gives back what it receives and you always give out so much love and energy. I am always excited when my inbox tells me there’s another post by you. my heart does a little skip as I open your post and read what has been happening in your world. Thank you. x

  11. Anne Marie says:

    What a wonderful gift and how impressive the wheel looks too. I’m struggling with my first sock and even doing it on a tiny Hiya Hiya needle as I couldn’t cope with 4 needles very well. The trouble is the pattern is on You Tube so it’s difficult following things as I don’t always want to be on the computer.

    I look forward to seeing more colourful yarns.

  12. mary i says:

    LUCKY,BLESSED YOU!!!!! I don’t have spinning (or knitting) skills yet,but seeing that wheel made me drool!!! I want to start with a drop spindle.and work my way up..KB’s pic.is Awesome, I had no idea about her talent. Thank you for sharing that. Sorry bout weather. Living in the southern USA I understand heat and humidity.Hang in there…Keep your hands busy looking forward to more of your art….Peace and Blessings to You and Yours.PS give Raymond a good pet for me…

  13. wendy says:

    Ooooh, lucky you with your new wheel!! I have the book, I made the frog prince you showed, it’s here http://thecraftersapprentice.blogspot.com/2011/01/frog-prince.html if you want to see it.

  14. Micro G says:

    I enjoyed your engaging tale about obtaining the spinning wheel, quite a piece isn’t she? All the Best Alice,

    MG

  15. Sarah says:

    What a wonderful post! I love everything in it – the toy book looks amazing so I’ll have to check that out!

    Sounds like you have a lovely colleague – and a lucky one to be receiving handmade gifts in return :)

    Have a great week
    X

  16. minaandme says:

    What a delightfully happy post ^_^ I can just imagine your excitement at a new wheel, and a very nice one at that! You are very blessed to have such generous people in your life. I also have to comment that the fluff being spun up in the above picture looks particularly soft and fuzzy. Pretty colors too! I’m glad things seem to be going well for you. Enjoy yourself!
    ~Lacey

  17. Camille says:

    I love it when the universe conspires to give surprises! What an awesome happy story for a Wednesday morning…I agree with MinaandMe…you are VERY blessed to have such wonderful and generous people around you…happy spinning to you as you get to know your new friend! And I should take this opportunity to thank YOU! After your last post of socky goodness, I dusted off my tub of sock yarn and am already almost done with one sock…yes…one sock is almost done…I think this is the quickest I’ve ever knit a pair of socks…ever. And although it’s a very simple basic pattern, they are literally perfect…no mistakes, no oopsies…thanks for sparking this yen to reconnect to all things yarny, fuzzy, and socky. You have no idea how much you give to us by sharing your postings…you are amazing and I am SO happy I found your blog from a little link on Ravelry and SO happy that you got such a wonderful gifty…thanks again! :)

  18. Jill_R says:

    All I can say is a big “YAY!” for you and your new second, second wheelie! That is so amazing how that happened, sometimes you just can;t think about it too hard, or it gets a bit freaky. ;-)

    I am excited to see your new projects, especially all the yarny, spinny goodness you are thinking of! Have a great day!

  19. Jackie says:

    I don’t know much about spinning wheels but that one looks wonderful ~ lucky you! I have indeed seen that Knitted Toy Tales before and it is a lovely book. In fact working in a library definitely has it’s advantages because I see books on Amazon I quite fancy and think that the library (and myself) would benefit from having a copy and then I promptly order them for the branch ~ then I get the first look at the library book too! Winners all round! Can’t wait to see what you knit with your newly spun wool :O)x

  20. JulesM says:

    How awesome for you! Good things are coming your way. I have Knitted Toy Tales too, and I think I purchased my copy in much the same way. Are you planning to use your handspun for some of these cute creatures?

  21. Melissa says:

    Oh, you are a lucky duck! I’m looking around for a spinning class as I don’t have someone to teach me. I’m so fascinated by the whole process.

  22. How lucky you are! Sometimes the Universe just drops things in your lap, eh? The knitted critter book is adorable!

  23. Deco Cat says:

    Oooohhhhh I have that book, it is so beautiful and filled with so many wonderfully delicious patterns! I am not a knitter really but I have made the mouse which sits on my fireplace. What a stroke of luck getting a new wheel. I have just booked myself onto a spinning course as I really want to spin my own yarn. How exciting!

  24. Maggie Moore says:

    I’ m so pleased for you with your new wheel. Looking forward to seeing more of it in the future. Maggie xx

  25. Rachel says:

    yay for good karma and good friends!!!!
    cant wait to see what you produce from that awesome looking book!

  26. Shirley Flavell says:

    That book looks great. I also liked the elephant. The good old Ashford’s are sure a relic aren’t they. I have one out in my shed(have it covered with an old sheet). I have in the past tried to sell it but was offered a pittance so thought I would keep it as a piece of furniture which was lovely in our larger home a few years ago but now live in a small cottage so the poor thing is out in the shed. I also have a smaller spinning wheel (like the one you showed us in a past post) which is being used now. Want to learn more this year. Started a pair of socks post xmas, got to the toe , had a good look at the sock and thought, somethings wrong here so ripped it off the needles and unwound it!Have to start again but at the moment have got the pip. Shirley

  27. michelle says:

    Oh that is a beauty. Can’t wait to see what comes off that wheel. You will show us won’t you? Pretty please????
    Love all the color on your site. I just slurped it up and now I feel full!!

  28. bridgirl says:

    Hi Alice, I have so enjoyed reading your blog – you write so well. The spinning wheel looks marvellous but it sounds quite a daunting task to make some wool on it; I am really looking forward to seeing you start the project. Loved KB’s watercolour. Also the knitting book looks wonderful, it makes me want to try knitting again, but I am just starting to crotchet so it might be some time before I buy this book – but it is almost worth buying it just to look at the photographs. Like you I loved the frog!

    • Liza says:

      Hello Alice,
      I just love your new home adventures.What a blessing to come your way and have something that you will just adore. Its like the saying of What is one’s man’s trash is the other man’s treasure, can harldy wait to see what treasures you will make!!!! Raymond looks grate, and what beautiful pics that KB has taken. You take care and only the best and warmest wishes to you and your loved ones. Your friend from Texas

  29. penelope10 says:

    What a beautiful wheel and great story! It’s funny how things happen!
    I am quite intrigued by the book. I remember the story “The Owl and the Pussycat, by Edward Lear when I went to school in England, one of my faves.
    And KB’s drawing is just adorable!

  30. Emily says:

    I’ve wondered about that book! I’m going to put it on my amazon wish list! I love the snake!

    The spinning wheel is beautiful! KB’s watercolor is cute!

  31. Julie says:

    KB’s watercolour is adorable.
    Fabulous wheel, it was obviously sitting there just waiting for you, fate is a strange thing!

  32. Lenora says:

    Hi Alice, recently found your blog and you have so inspired me. I have resurrected my mothers old spinning wheel and am trying to book into a course. I am interested to know how you like spinning on the ‘new’ Ashford compared to the ‘Magic Wheel’. I have been admiring the quality of your yarn on the magic wheel, is it too an Ashford? Which one is easier to spin on? Would a traditional wheel be easier or harder for a beginner, or don’t you think that it matters? Thanks for such a great blog.

    • oooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhh………………
      To be honest I can’t answer the question, I would say they would both be fine for a beginner… After all, thousand of people learned on traditionals, so just use what you have and enjoy!

  33. Penelope says:

    Lovely friend Alice
    I am so soooo excited for you, what a wonderful and generous gift to receive from your work colleague! It made me smile when I saw that your colleagues are not 100% aware of your yarn addiction and multi-makes (he he), we have to ease them in gently don’t we!
    Thank you so much for my e mail and recent comment (pleased blogger behaved for you eventually) about my socks, I am on a rock and roll with heels and stripes…wooo hoooo for DPN’s (now you never thought i would say that!). It’s your wonderful rainbow of inspiration Alice and encouragement that got me there eventually together with my grey matter putting two and two together !
    Wonderfully talented KB, she is able to capture the mood so well. As for that elephant in your new book, oh and the kitty kat…yes please. i love the frog too…hopefully no ribbit ribbit—ing xox Penelope

  34. Leah says:

    Don’t you love it when a random mention turns into an amazing treasure discovery. How exciting to get a new wheel!! I bet it is grateful to be loved once again instead of under the house playing with spiders. Love the book – wish I could knit properly!!! Have a fab weekend hon.

  35. Chris says:

    Greetings Alice in Wonderland! :}
    I am new to your blog and find it simply lovely and fun! I visited your Pinterest page…so many wonderful things to see. I am an avid gardener, so particulary loved your green things….I noticed of course, because I have one…the little whiskey barrel pond photo. I would love to show you mine but don’t know how to send it here but if you send me your e-mail address…that is, if you do that…then I can attach a photo. It is so easy to make one and so fun to have! I even have little goldfish in mine and you can see them in the picture!
    I also have a Siamese kitty…Sissy…she is 14 now….2 wiener dogs…and 4 little goats! :}
    Your knitting is beautiful! Have fun with your new wheel!

    Greetings from Washington state~US
    Chris

  36. Jennifer says:

    Love that book! Have made 2 dolls, frog, elephant, teddy bear, snake, pig, 2 mice, and a penguin from it. Hope you have fun!!

  37. juniperjune says:

    incredible! what a gorgeous wheel. the universe is smiling on you, probably because you’re smiling so much at it!

  38. Jay says:

    Thank-you Alice for sharing your talents and I can feel the love and enthusiasm through your blog. I have ordered the book, simply gorgeous and enjoy spinning. Much Love to you.

  39. ohangelina says:

    awesome wheel ! lucky you.. only good folks get such lucky surprises, good karma to you .xoxox

  40. Pam says:

    I made the owl from the book – he’s great!

  41. Abby says:

    The new wheel and the handspun that’s on it are both really pretty! Ooh! Ooh! That book is sitting right by me! :) I love the patterns that are in it. I’m thinking about making Eddie the Friendly Elephant.

  42. Great post, you have pointed out some fantastic details , I too believe this s a very excellent website.

  43. The watercolour is really cute!

  44. Marin Mckeon says:

    Enjoyed every bit of your article. Great.

  45. Pingback: The Home-Spun Bear and Other Presents « Sea Green and Sapphire

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