And no photos on my phone, only on the camera and no way to transfer them here. In short: Stephenie summarised the characteristics of bast fibres as a group, talked about the cultivation of flax (including the story of an abortive DEA raid on one of her 4' by 8' flax plots (lush, green, what else could it be? Flax???). And then we learned about prep. Retting, rippling, breaking, scutching, hackling. Dressing a distaff or, in our case, broomstick (housekeeping was bemused). Spinning tow and line, dry and wet. My first attempt was Terrible, as I fought to overcome the longdraw habit. My second was marginally better. After dinner I returned to hackle and spin a third skein. Much better. Practice makes perfect and we've got flax again this morning. The rain and wind (tornado alert at 0630!) may delay the boiling of our skeins, but that gives us more time to spin.
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