When twelve spinners begin spinning, the Wet Room Studio resembles a maze of tools with fiber and wheels in every available space.

At one end of the room, the drum carders were set up, piles of wool lay in the middle of the floor, and on the stove tops the dye pots were simmering.

Jeanne carding

Before spinning can begin the raw fleece must be picked and carded into rolags.  When the fleece was prepared, Martha made her way around to each spinner to help them turn the rolags into yarn.  “Let the twist in, keep treadling, pull the right hand pack, let the yarn go into the wheel.  Pat your head, rub your tummy, dance a jig.  Vwalaah! You have yarn!”

Instructor Martha Owen preparing an Indigo dye pot

Order was kept… until – color was introduced!

Here we have colors made from black walnut, onion skins, Osage orange, matter root, copper and ammonia, and cochineal.

Tufts of dyed wool were carded with natural tones.  Everyone continued practicing putting the right amount of twist into their yarn and skeins began to appear.

A skein made from naturally dyed wool

And the sun came out.

View from the Wet Room Studio

Emolyn Liden, Writer, Student & Instructor
About Emolyn Liden, Writer, Student & Instructor