Saturday, February 07, 2009

Sluggish Catherine

Now, I LOVE my Fidelis spinning wheel. However, I'm not too keen on the Lazy Kate it came with (scroll to the bottom of that link to see what it looks like).

The uprightness of the bobbins during plying makes plying awkward. The singles will catch on the top of the bobbin, especially if being drawn off near the bottom of the bobbin. It makes for some stop-and-go plying which is a pain in my assmar.

I've been mulling making my own lazy kate based on those ghetto fabulous shoebox-and-knitting-needle contraptions you see all over Craftster and such.

I like those, but they're a little too chintzy even for my cheapass taste.

That and I can't remember the last time I bought a pair of shoes and I'm NOT about to repurpose my old aluminum Boye straight knitting needles. Those babies have done some heavy duty knitting for me and I love them. I'm not about to pull them out of their retirement and make them go flip burgers at McDonalds so to speak.

So when I was finishing up the last of the season's Clementine oranges, it came to me.

I always like to save these boxes anyway--and I realized they'd make a GREAT lazy kate.*


I poked a couple of holes in both long sides of the box. I just used a screwdriver as the box is made of particleboard.


I took a couple of bamboo skewers and made a couple of polymer clay knobs for them.

Next I measured out some old scrapbook paper scraps (when Chunky was a pup, I was quite the scrapbooker. Poor Moochie will probably suffer the curse of the next child and not have as many cool things) and channeling the dark forces of Martha Stewart, I decoupaged them onto the sides of the box, taking care to re-poke the holes.

Finally, I popped in the bobbins and it looks great!

Top view.

Camera 1.

Camera 2.

The decoupage job is a little wrinkly because of the staples holding the box together. However all in all, I think it's still nicer looking than a shoebox with knitting needles

*Why are these things called lazy kates? And why are those table swirl-o things/revolving cupboards called lazy susans? Why single out Kate and Susan as lazy bums??

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Blogger Donna Lee said...

Poor Kate and Susan. They must have been really lazy to be reminded for all eternity....
My kate does the same thing. The bobbins are upright and the threads get stuck around the dowel holding the bobbin as I unravel them. I was looking for a box to make my own. I might just have a clementines box around somewhere.

7:08 AM  
Blogger Donna Lee said...

Oh, and my daughter Kate, doesn't really like us to call the device a lazy kate. We just call it the bobbin holding thingy.

7:09 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Kate and Susan got a bum rap!

Your bobbin winder thing (I feel guilty calling it a Lazy Kate now) looks awesome. Serious craftiness there chica!

7:21 AM  
Blogger knottygnome said...

it looks great! i should get in gear and take pics of the ghetto kate i made.

7:36 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have no idea what you are talking about. Why do they use Kate and Susan? And why is it always women? They have finally started to name hurricanes after men why not things that make you lazy? Love, Mom

8:17 AM  
Blogger turtlegirl76 said...

That's awesome! Love the knobs.

And now I have to watch Wayne's World. "Camera 1, camera 2. Camera 1, camera 2."

8:18 AM  
Blogger Linnea said...

Awesome. And yeah, sorry for Kate and Susan. But your Kate is great. I had a shoebox-style Kate for quite a while and, while I love my pretty fits-with-the-decor Kromski Kate that I have now, I honestly can't see any difference in the functionality.

8:30 AM  
Blogger Miss T said...


9:21 AM  
Blogger Mag said...

Susan was always a troublemaker and Kate was 'big nosed Kate, Doc Holliday's whore/gal pal. How did anything 'lazy' ever get associated with spinning? Spinnin' and knittin' are the opposite of lazy IMNSHO.

I can't tell you how good it is for your kids to see mom and dad solve a problem by thinking and making and not shopping. But you know that already.

Good job. We fear change

10:26 AM  
Blogger whichendisup said...

That looks awesome, now I wish I opted for the box of clementines instead of the bag. S'okay, apparently our house is the repository for orphaned boxes (and they multiply like rabbits!). Now I just need to spin enough to need a Kate.

11:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You craft diva. I'm impressed with all the things you do.

I've always felt I got a bum rap with the Lazy Susan thingy. I'm not that lazy, well, maybe somedays.

Love, Aunt(not so lazy)Susan

12:23 PM  
Blogger sgeddes said...

You have the nicest looking homemade kate i've seen. I've always suspected that there is a use for those orange crates, but I couldn't figure it out.

My kate is upright, but I haven't had a problem with it. Mine sits flat though and the one your lin kpointed to appeared angled. I wonder if that makes a difference.

1:05 PM  
Blogger Brena said...

It seems to me that Kate and Susan were not lazy but efficient!!! Very nice job on your Efficient Kate.

3:21 PM  
Blogger Disco said...

You reign supreme, oh crafting queen.

6:56 PM  
Blogger Kay aka dkswife said...

Good looking Lazy Clementine :)

The one that came w/ my Fricke does a really good job. Thank goodness.


5:15 AM  
Blogger Harlem Purl said...

Wow great idea. And even better spinning wheel. Thanks for the link, I think that may be my next spinning wheel as I'm on a serious budget. I made one of those shoebox thingamajigs and it didn't work at all, it just made things more frustrating.

10:36 AM  
Blogger Carol said...


5:41 PM  
Blogger Ceallach said...

I think they are called lazy because they are not getting up and walking round....they have ball bearings, ergo are lazy.

I would totally be lazy if I had ball bearings, but I don't, so no one ever talks about their lazy Ceallach.

4:17 PM  
Blogger Alisha said...

Your so creative....looks great. And I agree poor Kate and Susan....defiantly a bum rap :)

6:23 PM  

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