Pocket Wheel

I had to work through the weekend, but made time to swing down to the Madrona Winter Retreat to pick up my pocket wheel. My birthday present this year.


Made on Whidbey Island, by a lovely husband and wife team, this little wheel is a marvel of engineering. It’s small and light, and the spinning ratios are analog, not digital. You change ratios by sliding a connector in and out along a rod instead of changing out gears. The bearings are sealed, so there’s no oiling and it spins smoothly with very little noise.

I had to get on a year-long waiting list, but it was worth the time it took. I got to travel to Jon’s woodworking shop and pick out the woods and veneers that spoke to me, so I ended up with a custom wheel that was exactly tailored to my likes. I ended up picking koa wood and an anodized copper veneer that reminds me of an ocean map. It’s my island-themed wheel.

When I picked it up this weekend, it was luuurve at first sight. It’s so rare to be able to get something custom made in this day and age, and so delightful to do business with friendly people like Jon and Carla.


I could barely wait to spin on it. I went out to the rotunda and hung out for a brief while with friends old and new. I’d made arrangements to visit with my friends Selah and Laura, and we had a grand time chatting until my parking ran out and I had to run away back home to work.


Since I’ve brought this little treasure home, I’ve been spinning every day. If you’re a spinner, you know how peaceful and meditative this can be.

My love of spinning is reawakening in me, and I welcome it back.

5 thoughts on “Pocket Wheel

  1. Hooray for your new wheel and hooray for my getting to see your name in my inbox. Pam Howard and I were talking about how we miss your light! You look wonderful – I hope you are correspondingly happy.

    All the best,
    margaret o

  2. Congratulations on the new wheel! You inspired me to get a Hansen miniSpinner last year; maybe I should just put my name on the pocket wheel list and relax to the inevitable. 🙂

    I hope you have lots of time to spin and unwind, as it were. And to spend more time with your excellent family. Best wishes, and please! more blogging….

  3. Jon is such a nice guy. I was talking on a Rav forum about wanting a Dremel tool, and he PMed me that he had an extra one and would send it to me. Wouldn’t even take postage from me. So generous.

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