Lazy Kate

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A kate with three bobbins on it.

In spinning, a lazy kate (also simply known as a kate) is a device used to hold one or more spools or bobbins in place while the yarn on them is wound off from the side of the bobbin. Typically, a kate consists of multiple rods, which allow the bobbins to spin. Tensioned kates have a band that loops over the bobbins to prevent them from spinning freely. Some spinning wheels have built-in kates, although these tend to be more cumbersome to use than free-standing ones.

Kates are commonly used to ply yarn but may be used for any task which involves winding off yarn from a bobbin.

While a wooden kate such as the one pictured is much sturdier, the same effect can be achieved with a cardboard box and some sort of dowels.


  • Detailed instructions on making your own kate using easily found materials. [1]