Well, it’s been an interesting week. I seem to be in a state of injuring myself. Nothing major, a few cuts, a strained ankle, several bruises.
We have had some very temperamental weather, from glorious sunshine one moment to heavy rain the next. We have been woken twice in the mornings by thunderstorms which have been spectacular.
I have been working on a new blog, Inspired by Waldorf, where I am sharing our homeschooling adventures.
Still working on my “tiny knitting” I have also been learning a new braid on my Trollen Wheel and I thought I would share a step by step guide for this basic flat braid.
But first, a little history.
The Trollen wheel is a much debated historical braiding tool. Some say it is Viking, though others will argue there is no historical evidence to support it; no archaeological finds of the tool or the resulting braid. It seems to be known as solid fact by some, utter nonsense by others. How can it be Viking if one of the earliest examples found was from the 1600s?
So if not Viking, what else could it be?
The National trust state here that the Romans used Trollen wheels.
In Japan they had the Kumihimo method. This dates back to the 8th century. The handheld ones look pretty much identical while there are also disks mounted on a stand.
Does it stand to reason, that if we were trading with, or being invaded by these people, we would have learned a thing or two from them? Women and wool being how they are would have surely talked and passed on skills. Perhaps if our disks were not as common spread as a loom or lucet, and made from wood they could have simply rotted away, as could any braids.
I think that until time travel exists we will never know for sure and the topic will continue to be debated.
Either way, they are fun to use. If you have children there is a guide in the book Creative Wool; making woollen crafts with children by Karin Neuschutz (Floris Books).
Otherwise I hope this guide inspires you to give it a go. You can find a guide on making a disk here in wood, here from an old CD or here from card.
Once you have your wheel or disc, Gather eight strands of yarn, four in colour A and four in colour B. I have used two colours to better the photographs. Tie your strands below the opening in the centre and add a weight to aid your tension.