23 May, 2011

The Prince of Wales Spinning Wool with a Castle Wheel

Happy Victoria Day!*

Queen Victoria could spin flax, you know.  There's a photo of Her Majesty at a flyer wheel, spinning and drafting flax from a distaff in Patricia Baines' Spinning Wheels, Spinners, and Spinning, and unless memory fails there's another in Peter Teal's Hand Woolcombing and Spinning.

That was over a century ago.  What sort of royal patronage is handspun receiving these days, you ask?  Well, regarding fibre, there is the Campaign for Wool, which among other things has scheduled promotional events around the world to encourage consumers and industry to use wool.

Here is a short video, "HRH The Prince of Wales speaks about wool" which was made for the campaign.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QeGWxJDRQno



There is a longer version as well, "HRH The Prince of Wales Speaks About Campaign for Wool" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3DDxOx1RCsY where he goes into more depth about the connection between wool and environmental responsibility and about wool's beneficial properties.

Even better and more specific to handspun, you can find photos that show Prince Charles sitting with a group of handspinners and trying one of their spinning wheels at the National Wool Museum in Wales here: http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/2010/06/29/inside-track-on-prince-of-wales-91466-26745826/ and here http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/10432169.  Admirable, in my humble opinion, and fun.


*(Not Canadian?  Never heard of this statutory holiday celebrating the Sovereign's birthday?  An explanation is here on the Canadian government's webpage.  Not clear why Canada is connected to the British monarchy?  An explanation of Canada and our constitutional monarchy on the government's page here.  Want to visit Canada and see what the fuss is about?  There's the Victoria Day parade in Victoria, British Columbia.  The Times Colonist newspaper has details.  You may be more interested in Victoria's WWKIP event coming up in June.)

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