Saturday, August 12, 2017

Spinning at the Scottish Crannog Center

Each summer I take my kids back to the UK to visit family and friends, leaving my hubby behind with the dog. I do enjoy being a tourist and this year, while staying with my folks in Perthshire, we visited the Scottish Crannog Center. I didn't know very much about this place before our visit, thinking Crannog was the name of a place rather than an actual thing but seeing a real Scottish loch appealed to me - the center is based at the beautiful Loch Tay.

I now know that a crannog is a man made dwelling built on water. They have been around for 5000 years in Scotland and were still being build and lived in in the 17th century. There are hundreds of unexplored crannogs in Scotland and we had a guided tour of a replica of a 2,500 year old crannog that had been discovered in the 1990s submerged in Loch Tay. Underground archeology has revealed how these early Iron Age people lived and what technologies they used in their everyday life. And this is when it got even more fascinating for me!

Weaving and spinning were two of the technologies we were able to have a go at in the hands on second part of our tour. I bought a drop spindle at Houston Fiber Fest encouraged by my spinning and weaving friends and it has languished with my yarn collection but I was able to have a go! The hat and cloak were not my own - the center provided them because it was a little chilly on the loch!

I was awful at spinning only managing a few centimeters before the yarn split but I am not disheartened. My lovely crafty friend Catherine Peacher, @Craftingoasisbykat on Instagram, has provided me with a link to a helpful video Basic Drop Spindle Tutorial by MeganERiskTutorials and I got a book out from the library to help me too - Spinning and Dyeing Yarn by Ashley Martineau. I will report back on my progress at a later date. I'd love to know if you've had a go at spinning or if you are indeed proficient! 

Listen to the Audio Podcast


Helen said...

Great post! I didn't know what a crannog was either. Will look out for your spinning progress in the coming months! x

Tamara said...

It was really fascinating Helen! As I get older I find history more interesting. I'll be sure to keep you updated on my spinning progress!

Jodiebodie said...

Hi Tamara,

I've been listening to your podcast for the first time and I like it a lot. I love that it is simple and clear - your speech is slow enough for me to process your words (even through fatigue fog) and I am sure it is helpful for people who may not be familiar with your British accent. It takes time to 'tune in' to other accents sometimes!

It is refreshing to have plain, clear speech which isn't competing against music for one's attention. For people with hearing deficiencies, background noise can make all the difference between being able to understand something or not. Why create extra work for the listener by underlaying music? There are places for music, sound effects and actuality but not at the expense of the message.

Your podcast is short and sweet, providing an alternative format to the blog page to make your content more accessible for people with vision impairments.

Who can spare an entire hour in a busy schedule to focus on a podcast? Certainly not me! It is so convenient that your podcasts are short and to the point. After being away from the blogosphere for a time, I feel that I've been able to catch up on all of your news properly in one short session thanks to your podcast.

You are such a 'busy bee' Tamara! I don't know where you get the time and energy from. I admire you for putting your passion into action and it thrills me that you are reaping the rewards of that.
All of the things you are doing are very exciting!

Stay well and continue having fun and sharing it with us. xx

Nicole said...

Sigh, I REALLY want to learn to spin someday! I'm envious, haha. Not to mention your travels to Scotland, sounds so lovely.

Tamara said...

I can't say I've mastered spinning quite yet but it's on the (long) list. One day.....It's great having my folks in Scotland - it's such a lovely place to visit!

Tamara said...

Jodie - thank you for the lovely words about my audio version. You are such a dear sweet encouraging friend to me!

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