Weaving Hand Spun Yarns into Shoulder Bags

New Weaving on the loom

New weaving project on the loom! The completed weaving will be about 8" x 92" and sewn into a bag per this pattern.

Weft yarns are hand spun yarns! And I am sharing all the sources in this post!

The warp which you can see above is from Yarnia.

New Weaving on the loom

With guidance from Lindsey, the owner of Yarnia, the warp selected is perfect! Strong, tightly spun 100% wool is not only a perfect color to compliment the blue colored hand spun yarns Â… New Weaving on the loom

Â…but also adds a bit of life to the neutral natural wool colored yarns being used.

New Weaving on the loom

All the lovely hand spun yarns I have been collecting for a couple years for this project!

New Weaving on the loom

The yarns that started me on this project in the first place! A scrumptious knot of wool yarns purchased for me by my mother while she was visiting Canyon de Chelly on the Navajo Reservation in Arizona.

My mom was told these are all natural sheep wools and somehow got the idea that they were grown, sheered, carded and spun on the reservation. A small tag (found buried in the knot while I was winding the skeins into balls) seems to suggest otherwise - apparently the wool was at least spun at Brown Sheep Company in Vermont.

That's OK - I adore the yarns produced at Brown Sheep and use them often. I am disappointed the yarn may not be quite as originally presented, but because of where it was purchased and because it is a gift from my mother, and because I loved the look of that knot so much that I used it as the centerpiece on my dining table for nearly a year - I am including these yarns in my bag!

New Weaving on the loom

I am so lucky to have a mother who knows me so well! For my birthday last year, she sent me a bag of yarn from Shepherd's Lamb - a sheep farm located in northern New Mexico that specializes in raising Churro Sheep.

The yarn is 100% certified organic Churro Sheep Yarn - natural color and produced on the farm. Churro Sheep have not been in great favor for yarn production because the wool tends to be quite wavy. (Churro sheep wool is the inspiration for naming the much loved fried Mexican pastry by the same name!)

Shepherd's Lamb is quickly changing all that and producing gorgeous yarns and kits in addition to selling the best fresh lamb to be found in New Mexico!

Yarn completely produced on New Mexico soil by two people who obviously care deeply about what they are doing and how they do it makes these two skeins very special additions to the weaving. One day, I hope to meet the owners of Shepherd's Lamb!

New Weaving on the loom

And here - my little collection of hand spun bits which I found thanks to The Bellwether, Port Angeles, Washington State. I was able to purchase several small mini-skeins - just a few yards each - of "practice hand spun yarns" produced during spinning classes or test bits from The Bellwether Shop and "By Our Hands".

I was especially happy to have the opportunity to add small skeins of many different hand spun yarns to the collection.

New Weaving on the loom

Is this gorgeous yarn or what? I am just nuts about it!! As the direction of this project grew to be more and more personal, I decided that the project would not be complete without including yarn hand spun by Terri Bibby - my Saori Muse and a weaver I admire very, very much.

I asked her to spin a bit of yarn for this project, she kindly agreed and this is the fabulous result!!

New Weaving on the loom

And this is how lovely it looks woven into fabric. And perfect with the warp too! An accident but a happy accident!!!

You can find Terri and her beautiful Saori weaving on her blog: Weaving a Life

New Weaving on the loom

My very first bit of spinning will be used as well! Both the not so great bit I spun all by myself (on the left), and the much nicer yarn on the spindle that I made while learning to spin with guidance from Melissa at Make One!

Since the yarn on the spindle was partially spun by Melissa and partially spun by me while she watched, it is a perfect way to include her in this project.

Amelia (The Bellwether) provided the natural "black sheep" wool roving and the spindle!


Another gorgeous hand spun yarn from an Oregon spinner - Arlene Gowing who with her husband has a small business "Rags to Rugs & Stuff".

I met Arlene while at the Vancouver Recycled Arts Festival a couple years ago. She was sitting at the biggest, old fashioned spinning wheel I have ever seen - her fingers moving in a perfect rhythm - she almost looked as though she was playing a harp.

I was smitten and watched in a state of enchantment for quite a while before coming out of my little coma! I fell in love with this beautiful blue skein of hand spun yarn and every time I look at it I can see Arlene's fabulous spinning wheel whirling! Sadly my camera will not capture the color perfectly but it is fairly close.

If you live in Oregon or southern Washington State, you can catch Arlene spinning at many outdoor craft fairs.


And finally, last but not least, one small skein of the yarn purchased at Warm Valley Orchards is earmarked for the project!

The other skein - I am making another Tunisian scarf!

Beautiful collection of

Beautiful collection of yarns! Now I'm off to find the finished weaving....


What a nice surprise Terri to

What a nice surprise Terri to find your sweet comment on this post.  Thank you!

Love the crafty build up in

Love the crafty build up in saving all those yarns for a special project! I really do need to weave something this summer!

Pam, what an excellent post!

Pam, what an excellent post! I love the yarns and I love all the back-stories, too! I agree with you that it is so satisfying to know the whole provenance of such beautiful yarns. I also appreciate the detailed photos and descriptions. Best wishes with your project!

That's going to be gorgeous!

That's going to be gorgeous! I love that you are using all these bits of handspun from different sources. I wish I knew how to weave on a loom because this would be the perfect thing to do with all my bits of handspun.