Spinning as a craft has devolved since the industrial revolution and it is estimated that currently, there are only 51-100 skilled crafts people in the UK able to spin to a professional standard (Heritage Crafts Association, 2018). KRAFFT aims to introduce spinning to a new audience through a new product format and an updated material palette. As much as KRAFFT is a functional product, it is intended to be a ‘conversation piece’ within it’s own environment. KRAFFT is as much a piece of furniture as it is a tool for spinning yarn.

Spinning is one of the 150 crafts listed in The Radcliffe Red List of Endangered Crafts and it’s viability has decreased since the industrial revolution. The typical spinning wheel is made from hand turned timber components and flat sheet CNC components and put together with standard allen key fixings. The design of spinning wheels hasn’t drastically changed in the past century. To prolong the viability of the craft, the KRAFFT spinning wheel aims to introduce spinning to a new audience through a contemporary design and an updated material palette.

The project went through a development phase consisting of 6 months of work. From initial concept sketches right through to detailed CAD and the production of a working prototype. Local supplies were used for processes such as metal spinning and powder coating, the remainder of the prototype was produced in-house at the university workshops. Software used includes; InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Keyshot and Solidworks.

Initial response to the project has been very satisfying. It seems the aim of creating a piece of furniture that is also a functional tool for spinning yarn has been achieved, as when sat in an environment the prototype model gets a lot of attention and results in a lot of conversations being had. The mechanics over the alignment of the flywheel and the flyer/bobbin assembly has been a big learning experience throughout this project as accurate alignment allows for a more smooth running/rotating components.

The project will be exhibited at the following events:
Sheffield Institute of Arts degree show, 7th to the 22nd of June.
New Designers – Week 2, 4th – 7th of July.

View the project on Behance –

Copyright – Oliver Sunderland ©

Oliver Sunderland

I’m a Yorkshire based product designer and recent graduate of the Sheffield Institute of Arts, Sheffield Hallam University.