Hilltop Spinners holds spinning wheel gathering at Clymer Hill Reformed Church

The Hilltop Spinners, a group of people who use spinning wheels and old techniques to make yarn, recently gathered in Clymer at the Clymer Hill Reformed Church for a spinning gathering. The group was formed in 1975 and meets six times a year on the second Saturday of even months.

The fleece from the sheep is carded so that all the fibers go in one direction and then spun on a spinning wheel to form yarn. Washing the wool can be done before or after spinning yarn. This process produces one-ply yarn, and several plies can be twisted together to form a heavier yarn.

“It is the twist that gives the yarn strength,” said past president John Sipos of Cassadaga.

Spinning wheels date back for centuries as a means of making the yarn for weaving cloth used for clothing, blankets and sails on ships.

The Hilltop Spinners will have a display booth in the Chautauqua County Fair in Floral Hall in July to demonstrate spinning.

Nanette Knappenberger of Westfield is the president.

The next gathering will be on June 14 at 10 a.m. in the Villenova Grange Hall, hosted by Neva Woolley and Martha Woolley. New members are always welcome.