Thursday, October 23, 2014

I Can Do That.

I have a medicalert bracelet that I've worn for over three years that needed a minor repair. Instead of mailing it back to the company from whom I'd purchased it, Lauren's Hope, I thought, "I can do that". It's a simple fix.
Then, I decided that if I was changing this one small thing, why not switch out the color of the beads? I wanted to go from black to this denim color.

What do you think? Ummm. That's not denim. That'll teach me to take showers. Apparently, these seed beads were not color fast!

I went to a different store, re-bought all the findings and new beads. Dare I wash?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

It's About the Journey

It's about the journey, right? Well, I could show you my in process knitting project or crochet or spinning. Instead, how about I show you where I am in my weaving. I don't know if I'll get there, but my son asked for a gym bag. This does Not mean, "will you buy me one from the store?" It means, "Mama, will you weave me some yardage and sew it into a backpack for me?"

So, here's the last of the warp, ready to come off the warping board. By wrapping the yarn along the same path over and over, each "end" is the same length as the others. See at the bottom of the board where the yarns cross? That is important. It keeps the threads in order. And, Hey! Check out that cone. STASH BUSTING!

I put those two slats of wood in the "cross" to keep it in place. That keeps the threads lined up and it all from becoming a tangled mess. I take the yarn off the frame by crocheting the opposite end from the cross into a chain using my hand as the hook. Next, I take each end and pre-sley it through the reed. That just means, keeping the ends in order, I spread them out into the general places they'll be later on, when they're on the loom.  

Fast forward. One end of the warp is now tied onto the loom. It's been wrapped around the warp beam. Now, each individual end is threaded through a heddle, one at a time. The heddles are on different shafts. The order of the threading, like the heddle on shaft one, then the heddle on shaft two, is part of what makes the design of the cloth.

Keeping the ends in the order in which they were threaded, they get sleyed in the reed. This reed is 20 dents per inch. I'm setting it at 42 epi (ends per inch). That means mostly two threads go into each of those teensy slots, in order.

Hubby and I took a timeout to go down to Vista to their Fiber Arts Festival, again. I think I spent nearly two hours chatting with this lovely lady. She was so patient with me and my questions.

She's using a dobby loom. See the pegs on the right side of the picture? They are pre-set and make this loom work kind of like a player piano. Can you say "early computer"?
Something else that caught my eye was this shuttle. Do you see it on the left? It looks like a block of wood, right? Well, it holds a metal cannister stuffed with fabric strips.

How do you stuff it? Well, let me show you. Turn the handle on the big gear wheel on the top. And use the long piece of wood to mash it into that tube.
Outside of the loom museum, were people spinning. This little sweetie caught my eye. It's called a Pocket Wheel. Day dreaming: Hmmm. I'm picturing the drive back to L.A. Once I've finished the lace scarf I'm knitting, I could just tuck the wheel under foot (it fits). Or, maybe I could put one under my desk at work. Do you think the boss would notice?
My last picture is of a first. My friend has been experimenting with all sorts of art. Here's her very first weaving project. Amazing!