Wednesday, September 26, 2018

To Baby Land

I'm not a fan of flying, so my sister held my hand for a flight to baby land to see my daughter and son-in-law.
I took a few <wink, wink> things I'd made for the coming baby.
Remember that tangle of yarn? Here's Blake from Edward's Menagerie, all made up. And I knit a Raggedy doll, too, with the standard dress and overalls. When the baby of unknown gender made an entrance (after this photo was taken), I dressed the doll.

Every baby needs a pair of muck-lucks, a hunter's cap

and a pink bunny.

And just because, I made baby a few pairs of socks.
What's there to do while away from home and waiting? I found this knitted lace, shawl pattern on Ravelry. It is Orenburg Harmony by Loginova Svetlana and made up from Forest Hills, silk 51%, merino 49%.

Once I was home again, I went back to the baby blankets on Sophie and her drawloom. For the purple blanket, I designed as I went. I also used it as a sample, to see what would work for the next design. You see, normally, there are, for example, 4 warp threads and 4 weft or 6 X 6 or 8 X 8 to make a [design] unit (like a pixel or square on graph paper). Each one of the tiny squares on the design on the top edge of the blanket in this picture is a single unit. In this case, each is made with 6 warp and 12 weft threads. If I hadn't bothered to sample, my next project would have shown a distorted picture. 

Yay! No flat cats!      Now, look near the top of the picture, you can see white and brown threads that are pulled down onto pegs. Look directly over the left hand cat's head. That's one unit (six warp threads) raised by pulling down the brown draw cord. This pattern is one I found on Pinterest: 

I've been a bit out of control, making stuffed animals out of patterns from Edward's Menagerie. I made this elephant for the grandbaby and another for a friend (she begged).

Father tested, baby approved.

Baby tested, father approved requested a few minor changes.  <Snort!> I just read what I wrote. It stands.        I saw this cloth at the fabric store. How could I resist giving it a try, making some cloth diaper covers?

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Big and Little

I've been busy working on projects big and little.
Starting with the big, this is the completed double-knit afghan I designed. Color theory learning moment: There needs to be lots of contrast between the two colors for the design to pop. Sigh. Maybe next time!
For our friends' newest family member, this is big. It's to grow into.
The little hat fits her now.

And a tiny sweater for our soon to be here grandbaby.

My completed handwoven, lightweight, baby blankets. Check out the fun hem I did on the green one!
My husband has claimed the little, knit hedgehog.
And he's put a bid in for the aardvark!

This rather large tangle is actually the finished pieces of another crocheted animal. Really! They're both from the pattern book, Edward's Menagerie.
I've set up my drawloom on Sophie, again. My stash of baby blankets has become quite small, so I decided on a big project. I dressed her with enough warp to make nine blankets!
My biggest project, as always, is the garden. In front, I've been trying various plants on the curb (where I'd taken out the dying trees), just to see what works.

In the backyard...

...a big, spring meadow!

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Not a Lot to Show for It

I've been crazy busy, but without a lot to show for it.
This summer, just before we walked into Knitting Nation in Nyack, NY, my hubby and I were saying that we hadn't seen any knitted toys in a while. We turned around, and there was the fluffy yarn called Caribou!
This stuffed doggie is the only thing I've finished lately.  
I wanted something relatively simple on Sophie. And I'm down to only one baby blanket in my gift drawer.  
These are to be light weight cotton ones with yarn from my stash.The warp is an 8/2 unmercerized, pale yellow. This weft is pale green.
And here, the weft is a rose color. They're off the loom, but not hemmed or labeled, yet.
Again, from my stash, I'm knitting up a cotton baby hoodie.

Because I don't have enough to keep me busy (wink, wink), I bought some new tape measures and other "can't do withouts".

My double-knit afghan is still in process. I started it during our summer road trip.

I was so happy to have finished spinning up all 4 oz of Chasing Rainbows silk with my Suzie. Then, while looking through my fiber stash for something to spin next, I found 6 oz more of the same colorway.

My only project that's never completed, nor would I want it to be, is my garden. And with the more moderate weather, I have been spending most of my non-work time out there. The rest will have to wait for a rainy day! 

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Spinning My Wheels, In a Good Way

I've been spinning my wheels, in a good way. My hubby and I got back on the road for what turned out to be 9400 miles of driving (his wheels).
My wheel, Gingie, and I kept ourselves busy.  
Starting by spinning some black bamboo, I then plied it (twisted it together) with the Dark Matter 50/50 SW(superwash) Merino/Tussah Silk I'd spun on our last outing. Then, Gingie and I spun and plied the 60/40 SW Merino and Tencel. The color's a lot more of a medium greenie-turquoise than it looks here.
And, what? You thought that was it? Nope. It was a Long trip. I alternated spinning with knitting an afghan on circular needles. (There's that theme, again.)
 Don't ask. OK, fine. Ask. ...Sigh. I've been designing a double knit (two-sided) afghan on paper. But, when I got this far, I didn't like the way the corners looked. I couldn't leave them the way they were. So, I just ripped them out and re-knit them. ("Just", she said.)

We made a side trip to the Amana Colonies in Iowa and watched a basket weaver at work with her home grown willow.

We stopped to poke around at this mill in Frankenmuth, MI. If you have a fleece that needs cleaning and carding (organizing all the fibers so that they run in the same direction), this is the place.

In Pennsylvania, along the side of the road, we saw a sign for "handwoven rugs". We ended up chatting with the Amish weaver and his mother here in his workshop for about an hour. It was delightful!

He had recently obtained this all metal loom in pieces. Rebuilding it has been a challenge, but he's looking for a loom that doesn't require treadling. If they can figure out how to make it work, it'll give his legs a break. If anyone has any info on this loom, I can pass it on...?

In our discussion, they mentioned a weaver in an antique store down the way, called "The Nut House". We saw the sign and stopped in. The weaver showed me some circular---there it is, again!---weaving she's been doing and gifted me with a hoop and instructions so that I could give it a try when I got home!

All roads lead to Vavstuga Weaving School in Shelburne, MA. No time for classes, but I called about an hour before we got there. Tonya unlocked the door and let me browse. I opened my pocketbook...
You'll be shocked that I left all of this behind. I did, however, make inroads into their books, baskets and tools.

It looked like everything there was handwoven. If it was cloth, it was handwoven. I want my linen closet to look like that. No store boughten silliness for me!

We spent a day at Greenfield Village in Dearborn, MI, and probably an hour chatting with the weavers in the weaving shop.

Look up! Max showed me this two-story jacquard loom.

Like a player piano, one sets up the pattern by arranging the cards which you can see along the left-side of the loom and photo. Once everything is set up, just press the treadle, throw the shuttle, beat and repeat.

The next loom is set up with a fly shuttle. Do you see the handle hanging onto the cloth? If the shuttle is on the right, pull the handle towards the left. If the shuttle is on the left, pull the handle towards the right. Pulling on the handle makes the shuttle "fly" across the loom. This way, the weaver doesn't need to reach far over to the side to throw the shuttle on a wide warp.

Here's a counterbalance loom being threaded

This machine is a loom that was last used to weave cloth for cars' interiors. They rarely turn it on and use it now, because it's just Too Darned LOUD!

Here's a wool carder.

If you look Very closely, you can see the silk being reeled off of the cocoons onto the wheel at the back, one fine thread at a time.

Now, from Greenfield Village, inside to the Henry Ford Museum.


I remember seeing this, or something like it, when I was a girl. It's a kitchen from the 1700's, and a walking wheel.

Heading west, towards home, these beautiful woven articles were being shown in a store at Mesa Grande, CO.

And it all comes back around to Gingie and me, spinning some more bamboo as we wheeled home.