Monday, July 21, 2014

So warped.....

That would be me, of course.  Four warps all ready to go, pregnant with possibilities.

First up is a rep weave warp on the table loom:

 I'm taking a workshop with Rosalie Nielson at MLH workshops next month so the warp is (finally) wound onto the back beam.  I say finally because it seemed I had to change plans every step of the way.  First there wasn't enough contrast yarn, remedied by a trip to the weaving shop.  Then I realized that I needed more warp threads since I'm using 5/2 instead of 3/2 perle cotton.  That prompted a count of the heddles to learned that I was short about 70 heddles.  So got online and ordered those.  Those arrived shortly  (thank you The Woolery)  and have been installed.  Now I just need to sit down and thread the heddles.  We're not to tie on until we get to class.  (How many things can happen to a warp in transit that isn't tied to the front beam?....I'll let you know.)

Next up, another placemat warp for DS, in his requested colors:

 I pulled in the sett a little bit from the previous placemats and added a couple of repeats.  Above, you can see that I played around with tie-ups and treadling.  But he wants them patterned all over, like the other ones.   There's a lot of warp on there, so once his are done, I'll play around some more.

 Remember this experiment  in horizontal pleats from the last post?
 Well there is still a lot of warp left on the loom and I think I have an idea......

The last warp is for cardweaving:
 Michigan Weavers put out a challenge for our summer hiatus.  Those who want to participate picked a sealed envelope with a photo for inspiration.  We can use whatever elements we like from the photo to create something to bring to the September meeting.  I started with did I do?  (That goofy little circle with a tail are my warp yarns.)
If I had decided to do inkle weaving, it would be easy to use the Easter Island statues as a design element too.  Not so easy with card weaving.  We'll see, but the warp is set up for diagonals.  I guess that rock in the foreground can be a diagonal.

 Last for this post, but certainly first on my list to finish, is another prayer shawl:
 Usually I don't know who the prayer shawls are going to when I knit them.  But this is for a friend who was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer two weeks ago.  I would like to get it finished before her surgery next week.   Pattern and yarn details are here.
That pretty much sums up the fiber activity for July.

It's been awhile since I've done a book post.  Maybe I'll get to that in a week or so. 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Just playing around....

The plants from the last post are in the ground and pretty well established.  Some traveling and some housecleaning have been accomplished and now it's time for play.

First  up is this bag:
The fabric is from the workshop I took with Sara Lamb back in 2011 so perhaps it looks familiar.
I found the directions for the Triangular Bag at Between the Lines.  It calls for a fabric three times as long as it is wide and that was exactly what I a little left over for the handle.  I lined it with some poplin that was languishing in a drawer.  A fun little bag for carrying around projects.

Then earlier this month I bought the new book Woven Textile Design by Jan Shenton.  For me the book is a fresh approach to designing woven textiles, mostly because I've been immersed in weave structures...drafts, tie-ups, treadling sequences.  So I was in need of a broader perspective.  Toward the back of the book there is a whole section on textured cloth including a section on making horizontal pleats.  So I've been sampling:

It's essentially double weave.  The ground cloth is plain weave on two shafts and the pleat cloth is threaded as a straight draw on 6 shafts.  I'm using the second warp beam for the pleat warp....I can't imagine doing this without a second warp beam, but I'm sure some determined soul could probably do it.  The fun part is that all of the 6 shaft twills and satin structures are available for the pleat fabric.  All of the yarns are 8/2 rayon. 

I'm not sure what practical use this fabric will be.  It depends on how it washes up.  But is sure has been fun to play with. 

I hope you are having as much summer fun!

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Late start....

This is why I have been procrastinating about getting to the plant nursery this year:

That's the trunk of my car....all filled up.  I just needed a couple of things to fill in some bare spots.  But apparently I have no self control when I start picking out companion plantings.  I really did contemplate not doing anything at all this year....just sit back and rest on my laurels (well, perennials...laurel doesn't grow in Michigan.)

It didn't help when the lady at the counter said, "You know it would be cheaper if you just got one more tray to finish a flat.  And if you get one more 4" pot it will only cost you a dollar because they are 5 for..."  Oh, and of course she said, "Wow you are going to have beautiful garden!"  Yeah, well rabbits and deer notwithstanding.

To be fair, most of the stuff on the left hand side are culinary herbs.  And I did my own bit of enabling there.  While picking out my herbs, there was a gentleman in a sport coat (probably on his lunch hour) picking out tubs of basil, mint, and parsley.  Then he started eyeing what I was picking I said to him,  "You can't buy all of those culinary herbs and not take home some of this French thyme.  Here...smell it."  Ha...he bought four 4" pots. 

Today was what the Scots would call a "soft day" so I sat all of this on the patio to soak up the rain.  I'm hoping for fair weather tomorrow to get all this stuff either in the ground or in the pots intended for them. 
Shhhh....Don't tell the deer...or the rabbits....