Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Nómada Maret Madrid "Pura lana" edition

A local artisan market, Nómada Market had a "pure wool" edition, so I had to go and see it. Now quick lesson for those of you that may not know. Wool is to Spanish as it is to British English. Meaning that wool = yarn, and also the material that comes off of a sheep. Since "lana" here in Spain is mostly acrylic, the thought of "pure wool" had me intrigued. The DIY revolution is just now hitting Spain, and I had my doubts about what I would find...

The Nómada Market is upstairs from the Chamartin train station. I didn't even know there was an upstairs! It was a huge space with 3 rooms the approximately size of the one pictured below.

This is where you encounter hipsters in Spain. The was a local craft-beer brewery there, a place selling what looked to be vegan food, and most of the market was filled with very nice and innovative hand crafted items, but where was the wool?

The smallest of the 3 rooms was dedicated mostly to wool or wool like things. As expected I was disappointed with the turn out. I have been missing the fiber festivals in the US like crazy (it has been over three year since I went to one) and hope springs eternal that I could find something a little like that here. It seemed like only 10% of the people we selling wool items. Some of the items were "lana" but definitely the acrylic kind.

However the whole show was worth it, because I got to meet the wonderful couple behind Mundo Lanar. A fellow wool seller here in Madrid. We did not get to talk as much as I would have liked, but I was impressed with everything I saw in their booth and their philosophies.

Take this photo below as an example. (Unfortunately this is the only photo I took of their booth, but you can go to their blog for more photos of the show.) They are working with a wood turner in Galicia to make beautiful, working reproductions of spindles. All of their spindles are made out of mindfully harvested, local wood. Which means all of the wood was grown in Spain, and no trees died to provide it. In the photo you have from top left to bottom right: A Navajo spindle (which I took home with me) a simple spindle included in their kit, top-whorl spindles made out various types of wood, a russian style supported spindle, and in the center? A reproduction of a Basque spindle! I had never seen one of these in person before and I was so excited to hear that they are going to make some to sell! If you want to know how it works, here is an excellent video and here is another video.

There will be another post with my new Navajo spindle when I get a chance to "know it better". Meaning there is a higher learning curve than I expected.

Right next to Mundo Lanar was this Portuguese company, Ecolā that had a charming display. They sold wool clothes, but also had props showing the process of making wool cloth. Some of their equipment looked like antiques! First we have an old drum carder.

A boat shuttle on top of a woven blanket with weaving bobbins beside it. I do not know if you can see it, but in the boat shuttle that yarn is wound in what can only be described as a sausage shape. One of the only local Spanish-grown-spun-naturally-dyed wools it wound in this way and I have always wondered why. I think that the mystery is solved.

A spindle wheel, like a huge charka, or maybe just a bobbin winder?

Some of their projects, don't you think that you would be a set for winter with those slippers and that cuddly blanket?

And also some of the spun wool on cones, waiting be woven. What I could not get was a good picture of is in that box. It was a white, un-spun wool where both plies were wrapped together. Maybe the only spinning happens in the plying? Their products were mostly soft and had a felted look. Maybe it was not spun to make the felting process easier and the result softer? 

This last image is stolen from directly off of the Nómada Market FB page, however it features yours truly and the DH. I have a feeling that they included my picture to give a more 'international feel" to the event. However, I guess that I can understand the sentiment. What did we win? Yarn! However, even though it was made in Spain (Katia), it was 100% acrylic. Maybe next year?


  1. I was also disappointed when I read the name of this edition. Should have chosen a more suitable name as it was much more than yarn crafts and much less than yarn.

  2. Yes, I do not think that I saw any needle felting at all. It is a shame we didn't see each other there. My offer still stands about the needle felting...