Last night, Mike and I went to the knitting night at the Vancouver Hack Space, and I got to try spinning my own yarn! It was amazingly fun, and surprisingly easy! There was a woman there named Penny who I has been spinning her own yarn for many years and makes her own drop spindles.
I am dying to try making my own! I was spinning on one that was made of nothing more than a toy car wheel, a piece of dowling and a picture hook. They may be having a craft night in a couple of weeks where you can make your own spindle - stay tuned. Apparently she got 5 fleeces of wool from someone on Craigslist for free - even delivered. I'm so jealous!
There's a video on how to make one here. And an eHow article here, and one on how to make a spindle from old CDs here. The yarn I have is natural, and a perfect excuse to try dying with food colouring once I finish spinning
There is a simple article on how to use a drop spindle here, and a wikiHow here with a good, but long video on how to spin here. The pre-drafting of the wool isn't really necessary, but her video tutorial for it is here.
Apparently you don't even need to spin 2 strands of yarn together, but the twist in the yarn will shift your pattern, unless it includes the same number of pearl and knit stitches - like an even numbered rib. There are some patterns that incorporate this property of "energized" yarn to make some neat patterns.
Penny had some interesting ideas on spinning with feathers, and naturally coloured cotton, and energized knitting patterns, and spinning in beads... Oh my god, I will never sleep again!
There was also talk of bringing a mini Maker Faire to Vancouver! I am so excited!