Virtual St. Distaff's Day/Roc Day, anyone?

Hello, fellow spinners! This forum has been rather quiet of late, probably partly because everyone is so busy getting ready for the holidays and spinning is taking a back seat. At least in my house, it is! I’ve been knitting up a frenzy and I haven’t figured out how to spin and knit at the same time…

However, January 7th is St. Distaff’s Day or Roc Day. For more information about this day, check out these 2 links: (click on Shane Odom’s post)

Now, I realize many of us are not Catholic, and while this is a mostly Catholic holiday, I’d say it calls for a good excuse to set aside some time to spin!! We don’t necessarily have to have prizes,but it would be fun to touch base and if you want, we could make it a virtual option, where we connect and chat while spinning. If someone wants to set that up, I’d support it! We could have a certain time of the day to make that happen if you’d like, or it can go on all day and have people just pop in to spin whenever it suits.

Any takers??? I’m itching to sit down at my wheel again and this would be a good excuse to get my winter spinning started up again. I have a notion to see if I can take the day off work–although I’m not sure I’ll follow through with that notion, as fun as it sounds. I do have a fairly flexible work schedule, so maybe I can work early in the day to allow some serious spinning time.

If you want your spouse to play some harmless pranks in the true spirit of the day (see the links above), I’m sure they’d be happy to oblige! The perfect way to bring a little fun into your relationship!

I’d love to hear from you!


I’m interested in doing something Rhoda, and thanks for bringing up the topic - I doubt I have the know-how to arrange a virtual spin-in but I think people use Zoom for that - not sure how hard it is to set up. Even so, whether we work on our own or collaborate live, I have lots of spinning lined up to do and I am interested in trying some actual distaff spinning, for what that is worth.

Well, good for you on the distaff spinning! Are you spinning with a spindle or a wheel? I actually have a “vintage” decorative wheel that works and it has a distaff, but it needs some work for it to be a really nice wheel to work with. The distaff has a few ribs that need repair and the wheel needs to be fixed so it doesn’t wobble so much. I actually got it from someone who was selling a spinning chair and I wanted the chair. He wouldn’t separate the set, and the price was right for the chair, so I thought I would just sell the other wheel; somehow I still haven’t gotten around to selling it–I guess because I set it in the guest bathroom and kinda’ forgot about it. At this point, my “working wheel” is an Ashford Traditional that I got used. I’ve upgraded it to a double treadle and also now have the sliding hook flyer with multiple whorl sizes, so it’s a pretty versatile wheel.

@rhennell I have big ideas and too many to sort out - I laughed at your spinning wheel in the guest bathroom - that sounds like something I would do - I have one on top of the buffet in the dining room at the moment.
I am interested in trying all sorts of distaffs (or distaves). I have two actual ones for wheels (one antique that came with a pretty little German flax wheel and has an integrated pewter water cup), and one is an accessory I bought new that could be mounted on any Saxony wheel with a hole, or what I am planning is to use a wrought iron Tiki torch base with a segment of dowel that would hold up the distaff at a good height. I also spin with spindles and would like to try out a ring distaff. (To me they look kind of uncomfortable so I haven’t ordered one - might try out the concept with a piece of copper wire.) We also recently started playing with a wood lathe - we made a crank handle for my vintage loom and I can imagine making a distaff fairly easily.
I was inspired by a beautiful live demo of flax spinning from a distaff on a Saxony wheel, and so I ordered some flax, and watched a bunch of videos, but haven’t focused enough to actually try it. I guess I reach for spinning that I am comfortable with. I saw that any object can be used to hold up one’s fiber - even a broom tied to a chair alongside the wheel.
Rachel Smith of Wool n’ Spinning recently shared another way to hold a small distaff. Here is the link and the segment is from 38:30 to 46:45.

Wow-that was kinda’ fun to watch and very informative. Thanks for posting it. Perfect for anyone wanting to learn more about using a distaff for spinning. Be sure to post some pictures of your distaff when you do the spinning. I’m thinking we’ll just have participants posting pictures or videos of their work if we go ahead with doing a St. Distaff’s Day.

@Carlota - I guess with all the switching over to Fiberocity, I kind of left this go, especially since we two were the only ones who decided to do this. However, I think I will try to get the spinning forum started a bit if you’ll join me over there and since tomorrow is the Distaff Day, we can maybe do a short spin-a-long in the main forum. It won’t have any prizes; it will be just a way to get people going; maybe a way to kickstart a Spin Your Stash 2020? What do you think?

@Carlota - Actually, I Just went over to Fiberocity and saw your post. Now that we are keeping Fiberkind going, I would like to promote it here as well. I am excited to see that Fiberkind will be able to keep moving forward!! I love our Fiberkind community.

Definitely - it is all good. I will post here and there too, since I started a topic there. I just figured maybe someone else was out there rattling around and we could admire each other’s goals and accomplishments. I love the folks here and hope we can stay together. More tomorrow evening - insert smiling face emoji!

Sounds good!