Video Wednesday- Norwegian Crafts

Today I share an old film showing Norwegian crafts. There is weaving, spinning, and other historic crafts you don’t often see in films such as fingerloop braiding and naalbinding.

Of interest is the spinnin technique uses a hook in place of a distaff. It also shows the plying technique which Norman Kennedy speaks about, where the yarn is run through a hook in the ceiling.

Video Wednesday- Busy Not Spinning

I’ve been pretty busy these past few weeks.

First I got married.


Then this past weekend I attended History Alive, a multi-period re-enactment event that sadly got mudded out on the Sunday due to excessive rain on Saturday night and early Sunday morning. The rain eased early but the mud was there to stay and the mud made the entrance to the grounds and the car parks unsafe.

I did manage to enjoy myself on the Saturday though, and had the best time I’ve ever actually had at this event. The morning I spent helping with our shop, Make Your Own Medieval. The afternoon I spent visiting some other re-enactment groups and talking to them about their crafts and activities.

I visited my friend Rosalie from Rosalie’s Medieval women and saw her display of artifacts.


The ladies of my re-enactment group had a go at fabric stamping at the encampment of Karvan-saray and now have plans for fabric stamped wall hangings.



I took a short video of the fabric stamping.

My friend and I then decided to attend a shoe making workshop, but took a wrong turn and as we walked past a display of coloured wool we stopped to ask if it was naturally dyed. Well, it was and the group spent almost half an hour talking to us about their crafts- it was like a private show.


I took some video of this as well.

My friend is also interested in researching 15th century dyes and doing some dyeing of our own, so I’ll see if we can get something happening at our reenactment group’s den after the reenactment season.

After this we watched a woodworking display, which I videoed but haven’t yet put up (I might not, there were a lot of people in front of me so the video might not have come out too good and an inkle weaving workshop done on modern inkle looms. The looms were for sale and I was very tempted, as I was last time, but I don’t think I have room or time for another modern loom. I’d rather a box loom I can use at home and take to events.


I planned on spending Sunday doing some spinning videos but due to the cancelation I had to pack down the stall in four inches of mud instead.

My schedule is pretty jam-packed for the next few weeks, but I hope I might be able to get some video at Abbey Medieval Festival in July- we’ll see, I’ve got a couple of shows planned each day and things can get pretty crazy at Abbey.

New Loom!

So my young man (who is very attentive and observant) thought up a wonderful surprise for my Christmas present, only he is a)bad at keeping surprise secret and b) didn’t want to get the wrong sort. So he told me he wanted to get me a new “weaving thing to do my looming on”

My little spears loom has been ok for working out the basics and getting a hang of things but already I’m wanting to use double heddles which is do-able but tricky when they’re the wrong length and have nowhere to actually sit.

I’ve chosen an ashford knitter’s loom in the 50 cm width mainly because of the ease of getting it (buying something available locally means cheaper postage) and the versatile width, not too wide but wide enough for most uses.


Pictures of my new loom!


Finally here are some pictures of my new spear’s weaving loom.
As you can see, being impaitent, I couldn’t wait to start weaving something on it even though I don’t know anything much about weaving. Also, it gave me something to do. I’ve been sick and on best rest for the past few days (and missing out on the reenactment event this weekend! Boo hoo! We only get two a year as it is!) and this was something I could do in bed. Spinning, not so much (yes, I tried).
I had a spool of white crochet cotton and  little blue lying round so I grabbed those and set this up.  I wasn’t concerned with my weaving being useful for anything once I’m done because the cotton was left over from another project and going to waste anyway.
Here you can see me starting weaving.


Here you can see me almost finished


Obviously I have a lot to learn about weaving! But it was fun to play.

Of course, I’ sure random crochet cotton lying round isn’t the best thing to use but I notice there are quite a lot of gaps in this “fabric”, I don’t mean the general uneveness gaps but theones between all the threads. I think with this loom getting the warp threads closer together isn’t practical though beating the weft threads down more could be. But if I want an even weave then I think I’ll need some thicker yarn to weave with or I could possibly double up my warp threads, not sure what effect that would have.

I’d love to weave some linen or cotton/linen tea towles etc but it will be a while before I have enough of my own handspun to do this. Also I’l like to practice on something other than my own handspun so I know something about weaving when I come to use it. Does anyone have any recomendations of yarn to use or what weight I should be looking for? Really, I know nothing about weaving!