The lace making bobbins have been whispering for me to bring them out of the tub, and once again throw some bobbins about the pillow. As I seem to be always having to learn something new, I decided to learn a new type of bobbin lace. I have done some basic Torchon style lace and then some other projects in a few other styles, but I wasn't sure exactly what they were. So this time around, I took some time to systematically look through the different types of lace from all over the world to see what kind I wanted to focus on. I settled on Duchesse/ Withof and Honiton lace.
These styles use very very fine lace threads and are what I think of as the flowery, filmy cloth category of bobbin lace. I happened to already have on hand a couple of books on basic Honiton lace, and I ran across a really nice Honiton package on Ravelry, including a Honiton pillow, bobbins and another book and video thrown in for a very good price, so that seems like a logical place to start.
The Honiton pillow is on the left, you can see that it is a different shape than the cookie pillow on the right, more like a marshmallow. The bobbins too are different from what is used on other types of lace.
There are around 144 bobbins lined up according to their size. I will not need near this many, so when I get a good idea how many I will need, I will probably sell some.
While I was waiting on this package to arrive, I ordered the thread and tools I would need from "Van Scivers " a supplier of bobbin lace supplies here in the States. Everything in fact that I would need to get through the first of the beginning Honiton lace books.
I was at Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival last weekend and along with everything else I did, I visited the demonstration tent several times. There were spinners, knitters, angora bunnies, and also there were several ladies that were doing bobbin lace. One of them was even doing some Honiton, so I got to see first hand just how tiny these pieces are to work on and just how tiny the thread is! It was fascinating! One of the other ladies, that I spoke with quite a bit was wearing a pair of clip on/ flip up magnifiers to work on her lace. I have recently graduated from readers to bifocals and I was trying to figure out how I was going to manage. With readers, I just put on 2 pairs, but that didn't seem to work with my new glasses. As soon as I got home, I ordered a pair of the clip on/flip up magnifiers, and they just arrived today! All the tools have arrived, I have already watched the video once, now I just need a quiet moment or two to get everything set up. When I have enough done to share, I sure will.
I am making preparations for another t-shirt rug, this time it is going to include the sports t-shirts of the son of a friend of mine. I am having to supplement a little bit in order to have enough for a rug, but I think I will be okay. Among the bag of sports shirts that my friend gave to me to use there were basketball and baseball jerseys that I don't feel are suitable for a rag rug, they are far too slippery, but I will suggest that my friend finds someone who can make a couple of quilts with them. I think with the right backing it could be really nice.
At the same time I am also busy washing the fleeces I got from Sheep Shearing Day at the Museum of Appalachia, I have washed 4 and have 4 more to go. It is way more fleece than I need for demos though, so I think I will see if the other spinners in our group would like a "scoured" fleece or two! The fleeces are of medium-fine texture and very very springy since they are Hampshire sheep a meat breed. The resulting yarn will be great for hats, mittens and sweaters. The lanolin will be gone but there is plenty of vegetable matter to comb out, which works beautifully for this wool.
Several of my weekly obligations are winding down, a few may be added, but it seems I have gained a few more hours to devote to my craft, so the plan for this summer is a Studio clean up, I will take this summer to go through things and clear out what I can, to make a less cluttered, calmer space. I believe I will start by organizing all the spinning fibers and equipment in May. The weaving supplies and tools in June and fabrics and crafting books in July. My weaving friends will have first dibs on what will be passed on for someone else to use, then I may put a couple of things in my Etsy shop, which I will have to reopen first if I decide to do that.
That is it for now, all I have to do is keep with the plan right!!!!
Until next time, Happy Weaving, Tina