Fàilte! Greetings to you and welcome to the world of Sealy MacWheely!
As you can see, this is my shiny new website and blog and I’m incredibly proud to be introducing it to you all. I guess the logical first post should be used to introduce myself… So, who am I?
My name is Katie Seal, I hail originally from the city of Nottingham, famous for Robin Hood, the lace industry and good pubs, although almost all of my adult life has been spent in Scotland, Canada and a very long year in Switzerland. Although Canada stole my heart it is Scotland that has laid claim to my soul and I find myself now residing in the shadow of the Campsie Fells in the beautiful town of Kirkintilloch in East Dunbartonshire.
As I state in my bio, it was in Canada that I first developed a love for the alpaca which developed into an addiction for yarn, wool, dye and anything fluffy, and, over the course of my five year long degree studying French and Gaelic studies at the University of Aberdeen, Sealy MacWheely began to flourish.
But why am I blogging when the internet is already seemingly full of tutorials, historical explanations and experts in the field of spinning, weaving and dyeing etc?
Well, I do not claim to be an expert, nor do I intend on becoming the next spinning guru, hailing the latest gadget or accessory. One might laugh at the concept of mode in artisanal crafts but I have recently been fascinated by how something as supposedly stoic and traditional as wool and fibre production is by no means free of fashion trends. Over the past few years I have noticed several such trends being adopted and sometimes subsequently dropped by the spinning communities across the world, such as: ‘Thick ‘n’ Thin’ yarns, blending boards, art batts and most recently the resurgence of the ‘dealgan’ spindles of the Scottish Highlands and Islands, to name but a few.
I personally love that spinning, knitting and weaving and all other related crafts are still evolving with each new person that picks up a spindle or pair of needles… The art yarn revolution is in full swing and I am proud to be a part of it!
I have just one slight confession: am addicted to bright colours, to me they are a sign of happiness and contrast with the dull grey of modern daily life. My yarns, mawatas and rovings reflect this love and I hope add a spark of colour to the lives of those around me… Likewise, I am fascinated by the natural world and you might notice that my Instagram is peppered with photos of pretty flowers that I find on the canal side in between pictures of my wares.
I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling like I live in a permanent quandary, technology has nigh taken over the modern world and my daily working life very much focuses on software updates, life improving apps and the latest gadgets. Yet I cling to traditional crafts as though they are an anchor to reality, the zeitgeist of a simpler time, perhaps. It is through these arts and crafts that I can express myself and in turn I hope to help others to do the same.
And with that I shall leave you to explore my site, areas of which might still be under construction for which I apologise: I fear my spinning is far better than my coding!
*I am a spinner, or more literally translated: It is a spinner that is in me.