Sunday, October 3, 2010
Nålebinding - a new fiber art for V
E has always enjoyed the fiber arts. First, she just played with string and thread and rubbed her tiny fingers on any cloth she could find. Later, she learned to knit (thanks, Grandma), sew, embroider and spin fibers (cotton, wool and dog hair). Today, E has a new fiber arts project, thanks in no small part to volunteers at the Elverhøj Museum in Solvang.
While visiting Solvang for Danish Days, we stopped by the museum to visit the doll house and kid-friendly docents and for a story-telling/paper-cutting session. E was soon distracted from the norm by the lace makers working on site. While she tried her hand at Mrs. Hale's lace, the two got to talking. When Mrs. Hale learned E's fiber arts tendencies, she got very excited, picked up a binder and told E to go inside the museum, find Mrs. Hale's daughter, Crystal, and ask about nålebinding.
An hour and a half later, E had been given a great start on the ancient art of "knotless knitting" which predates both crochet and knitting. She had practiced long enough to get the muscle memory well set, and to develop an appreciation of the form. According to Crys, the vikings used the craft to make everything from socks to hats. Unlike knitting or crochet, she explained, nålebinding doesn't unravel if it's injured. It also requires only one tool, some sort of dull "needle," and short lengths of yarn.
If you'd like to try your hand at it, begin here or watch the video here.
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