Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Spinning wheel

Earlier this year my mother moved to a smaller apartment in a retirement home. That meant, that a lot of her things could not go along. My brother and sister-in-law were very good in getting a big box ready with things for me. And an excellent job they did! Nothing got damaged, not even the dishes.
Included was this chip carved box, made by my great grandfather around 1920. It is about 30 cm across and was used by my grandmother, his daughter, as sewing box. He made one of these for all his children.
This spinning wheel was also included.
I had my eye on that since I was a small child. I remember it standing in the hall on the farm. I loved to see how fast I could make the wheel go around. My mother had been after me to take it along years ago, but it would have been very difficult to take in a plane with me.

My brother took it carefully apart and at the same time took pictures. Once it was here, it did not take long to put it together again.
I never knew where it came from, but when I asked my mother it had an interesting history.
During the second world war my grandfather was supervisor for part of the sea dikes in Friesland. He would receive large logs that were used as pilings to be driven in the sea. Groups of these logs were held together by large pieces of oak. Since things were scarce at that time, he would keep these pieces of lumber and take them to the furniture maker in town. Now this was not just any town. This was Hindelopen with a long seafaring history.
Ideas from the long journeys were used to paint the furniture. You can see some of this if you google Hindeloopen
My grandfather ordered a spinning wheel from this furniture maker and friend of his. They had the sheep and it would be my mother's job to spin the wool to be used to knit the socks for her father and 5 brothers. So each evening she sat there spinning away. After the war, when she got married she could take the spinning wheel with her. But by that time she could not stand even the sight of it, so as long as I can remember it stood out of the way, upstairs in a corner.
So now it is here in Canada. I have nver done any spinning, but it would be fun to give it a try. I could spin the wool and Jeannette could knit it. So the roles would be reversed.
In 1/2 hour the corn harvest will start, so it will be busy around here for a few weeks.
I do hope to get some machine quilting done though. 2 small landscapes are ready to go. They will be my practice pieces before I will start with the farm, but that one is also ready to go.

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