Friday, July 21, 2017

Avoiding the Heat

Last Monday LouAnn and I were at the Museum of Appalachia, for  a group of kids from one of the Knoxville summer programs.  The kids arrived a good 40 minutes later than we had anticipated, so while we were waiting, we did a little spruce up of the loom house.

One of the things I did was to clean up the unruly pile of cotton sprigs and bolls that had spread somewhat from where we had put them last fall.  It was a mess!  I pulled all of the branches out and swept the area clean, then I put back enough of them to make a nice display and picked the remaining ones clean of cotton and stuffed it into one of my bags to take home.

On our way home we talked about all the things we were needing to get done that day and for the rest of the week, and I really did plan to work on some of it that day, but the temperature in my upstairs studio makes is necessary to limit the afternoon hours of work, especially since I had been outside all day at the Museum.

I downed a couple of glasses of water and iced tea, and then sat down on the couch to cool off a bit, and I brought out that bag of cotton bolls and I began to take the seeds out of them.  Normally I will limit the time I spend doing this task to "in front of the TV" and evening hours, but on Monday it was just the task I needed to do.

It is satisfying work, and I wish I could describe just how soft this cotton is!

As it happens it is not a difficult job to do, the seed is easy to find.

It is more a task of pulling the lint off of the seed than picking the seed out of the cotton.

 The cotton in these pictures is not the cotton I had gathered at the Museum, which has a fairly short staple and pretty dirty, but it is a bag of seeded cotton I found while rummaging in the Studio this week that I had not yet ginned.  This cotton is clean, soft and lovely with a long staple, probably 1.5 inches or so.  It is lovely, and should prove to be a delightful fiber to spin for weaving.

So far I have only dabbled a little bit in spinning cotton, and I find that of all my wheels, and I have several, the Great Wheel is a by far the fastest twist inserting machine, and it makes spinning cotton a joy.  Which  is a good thing since I put in an order on Tuesday from "Cotton Clouds" for 2 pounds of long staple Pima Cotton, with the seeds still in it!  I had planned to get 4 pounds to get the discount, but it is probably a good idea for me to slow down a bit on this one, since I have yet to use any of my spun cotton in an actual project!

I finished the colorful rug from last weeks post and I am half way through the next one, this time with stripes, I should be able to post about that next week.

Until next time, Happy Crafting, Tina


LA said... hand picked the seeds from the cotton rather than using a gin? And, you ordered more????

Tina J said...


Theresa said...

I sent the prepared and dyed cotton I had to another home. I just could not get the hang of it.