Projects and Science



Australia spindles are simply made of a spindle stick and one or two crossbars. In the desert regions the aborigines spun human hair and the fur of small rabbit-like marsupials known as bilbies, as well as wallaby fur. More recently rabbit fur and camel´s wool replaced the traditional fibers as the introduced animals spread rapidly across the continent.

see: Australian Aboriginal Fibrecraft (Wikipedia)

Australia, spindle
Central Australian Aboriginal stick spindle with camel´s wool collected in the 1950's. Length: 18,11"; Lengths of the crossbars: 5,7".

Australia, spindle 2

Spindle made of two parts. The spindle parts consist of a slender cylindrical rod, and a flat crosspiece with pointed ends.

Australia, Warlpiri man spinning

A Warlpiri man spinning ''Wirriji'' or hairstring from human hair with a simple spindle rolled on the thigh.

Australia, ropes of human hair
Heavily greased and ochred ropes of human hair which are worn around the neck and waist at initiation ceremonies in Central Australia.
McCourt, Aboriginal Artefacts
Image from: Tom McCourt, Aboriginal Artefacts (Adelaide 1975) p. 72.