Today I made my way down to the Washington State Spring Fair, Puyallup, WA. Each year that I have purchased a fleece from the Shepherd’s Extravaganza I have received a ticket for entry into the fair. Each year I go back and purchase more fleeces and used equipment, always thankful that I keep receiving that entry ticket.
This year I got in a bit early and checked out the used equipment sale. As I browsed, I saw a Rick Reeves wheel that was shouting for my attention, so I gave it some. I was heartily disappointed to hear terrible sounds as I treadled the wheel. At $600 and a horrific squawking, I moved on.
Then I spotted a beautiful Norwegian wheel. Three bobbins, in lovely shape and no sound when the wheel took a turn around. Even a small sound would not have deterred me like the Reeves wheel. This wheel had character and a history to it that demanded my attention.
So I purchased it. The cost was mild compared to the other wheels that were also there. $300. Worth every penny.
I took her home and gave her a good orange wax rub down and tada! I present to you, Miss Elizabeth Bennett. Mr. Darcy needed a counterpart, a muse, another to share bobbins with and to spend his days gazing upon her beauty. Ha! Nothing like a good romance.
There are a few markings on the wheel: two buttons as shown below, one on the wheel itself and one on the end of the base.
I flipped her over to discover a very faint stamp underneath the main table of the wheel. I can hardly make it out, so if you have some idea or better eyesight than me, please leave a comment as to the answer to this mystery.
Researching online, I was able to determine that these wheels were made between 1950’s-1960’s in Bergen, Norway. I will do some more research or reach out to my Instagram friends in Norway to maybe point me in the right direction. As I learn more, I’ll post what I find.
In all, it was a great day for me at the Shepherd’s Extravaganza. I found this remarkable wheel, four fantastic fleeces from the fleece sale (will share more in future posts on the fiber), two weaving books, a Peony drop spindle sold by Judy Taylor in the used equipment sale, two scones and a Krusty Pup. I could have lived without the greasy corn dog, though what kind of fair would it be without this type of food.
Until next time….