Monday, November 24, 2003

I completed my second tri-loom shawl and this one is very unique. It is plain weave in blue Lion's Brand homespun yarn.

Despite compelling advice to the contrary, I embroidered a large floral design on the back of the shawl and it turned out great! I used the mega-hoop on my Designer I sewing machine and lots of water soluable stabilizer.

The flower design picks up shades of green and purple from the woven fabric. Here is a closer view:

Unfortunately, there is a great deal of glare from the flash on the design. However, you can see by using water soluable stabilizer on the top as well as the bottom of the fabric, the design stays on top of the yarn.

I suspect there will be more embroidered shawls in my future. This one is for a friend who is going through a difficult time right now. Hopefully she won't see my blog before she receives her gift later this week!

I've been working on spinning thick and textured yarn for my next tri-loom project. I'm struggling to get it bumpy enough for my liking.

I can't believe how fast I "forgot" how to make slubby, beginner's yarn!

On the knitting front, I finally screwed up my courage and conquered my first stranded, two color project!

Kurt brought home some wool yarn from the thrift store for me and I thought I'd make hat for Gregory. We plan to go home for the holidays this year and Las Vegas is colder than Florida! I thought both of my children could use a wool hat. Gabrielle's is next. I want to knit her a tam, but she wants one like her brother's. I think she likes the pom pom Gregory insisted I put on the top. Perhaps she will like a pom pom topped tam?

I learned quite a bit from this project. I learned that I need to learn how to do the "jogless jog." I also learned that decreasing in the middle of a design row is not an easy thing. Perhaps I should have used a pattern for my first stranded project instead of making it up as I went?

Gabrielle wants her bobble sweater to be finished before we go to Las Vegas. (She is quite demanding for a 4 year old!) She could use some more winter clothes so I have been a bit more focused on her sweater. I am just about finished with the first sleeve.

That leaves one more sleeve, the collar and sewing all the pieces together. Oh yeah, I will have to weave in about a million ends too. Can I do it in less than a month? I hope so!

Friday, November 14, 2003

I love to receive unexpected blessings from the Lord! I've wanted a floor loom for awhile, but knew it was WAY out of my budget! Then, yesterday, I got an email from a local weaving guild member who thought I might want a floor loom. There was an estate sale taking place today and they were just about GIVING a loom away. So this morning, I woke up the kids at the crack of dawn and we headed out.

I came home with a 1975 Macomber 8 harness, 20 inch, floor loom! Here is a picture of the identifying information:

It looks like the perfect loom upon which to learn to weave and does not require a dedicated loom room!

The wood is very nice. Anyone have any idea what kind of wood it is?

At the sale there was a pile which they called "the loom". There were other items included, like a warping board and even a couple of cones of thread for me to get started. I think there is a rigid heddle loom here too.

The rigid heddle loom has a blue warp on it and the loom has a brown warp on it.

I don't know what the flat board is. Underneath the yarn is a Schacht boat shuttle and a couple of shed sticks. I was very impressed with myself that I could name most of what is here. My first job, other than finding a more "permanent" location for the loom, is to clean it up. It is terribly dusty and there is a little rust on the two reeds.

I have already contacted Macomber and they are supposed to be sending me the written information for this loom. Pretty cool!

Monday, November 10, 2003

What a week! I have been frying my brain with information pertaining to biological interventions for autism and it feels like when I was in college/law school and just finished finals. Whew! We have done very well with dietary intervention, but it is time to take my son's "treatment" to the next level. Changes and discoveries in the field of autism happen so rapidly that it is up to parents to stay on top of the information. Few local doctors with more "general" medical practices can keep up. Too bad I went into law instead of medicine!

In addition to time with my Lord, my knitting, spinning and other fiber projects keep me sane!

I've been experimenting with spinning "designer yarn."

It has little loops of fiber throughout.

I was SO proud of myself because I figured this out all on my own. Then, when we went to Running Moon Farm, I saw many skeins of the same kind of yarn spun by Margrett Stretton. She even showed me a video demonstration for spinning this kind of yarn. Oh well, like the bible says, "there is nothing new under the sun."

I started a new shawl on my tri-loom.

I am using a pretty oceany blue Lions Brand Homespun yarn.

I finished Kurt's "sleeping socks."

I used my own homespun yarn from some Shetland fiber I got in a trade. The yarn was pretty lumpy, but the socks will keep Kurt's feet warm while he sleeps. He likes to wear socks to bed and these will be better than the little cotton ones he has been wearing.

Before I spin up any more sock yarn, I thought it might be good if I actually saw the real thing. So I broke down and bought some.

I'm planning to use a basic sock pattern from my Vogue Socks 2 pattern book. Sock yarn sure looks different than I imagined it. I guess I'll have to alter my spinning of it!

My kids love to play in hand soap and have been driving my husband and I crazy with it! They can go through a bottle of liquid soap in a couple of days. They love to squeeze slippery bar soap out of their hands and all over the place. So I formulated a plan.

I obtained directions for felted soap from the Mielkes Farm website and Gabrielle and I made a few felted bars of hand soap.

Now the soap is no longer slippery, the kids are not so inclined to play with it and we are not going through hand soap as fast as the water that goes with it! YAY! This was a great project for using wool that I didn't really want to spin into yarn.

Sunday, November 02, 2003

I finished my first woven shawl!

I have a couple of pictures because it is tough to see the black.

I used the Lions Brand Homespun yarn for this project. Alisha, my step daughter, picked the colors as this was for her.

This shawl was done with the 5 foot insert, which was the perfect size for Alisha.

She looks great in the shawl and we both loved how it turned out!

There was some left over yarn so I knit up a tam to go with the shawl.

I actually finished this in ONE AFTERNOON! I surprised myself and Alisha with my speed.

Alisha left this morning for the airport wearing her tam and shawl. She had the shawl wrapped around her waist and secured with a pin. She looked great! Unfortunately I was so distraught at her leaving that I forgot to take a picture. We are sure going to miss her, but I am so grateful for her visit!