Sunday, February 28, 2010

School Project

First of all, what's on the loom this week? My production leclerc has a very interesting warp of
variations of red. The main color is shrimp but the center is brick and dividing it is actually peach. They work really well together. It's the first time I've tried this combination but I'm pleased with it. The finished products should sell well. It's a bit different from my normal weaving. Then, I'd wound a warp for waffle weave towels of 8/2 cotton. I wound it onto the baby wolf but haven't threaded it yet. That's hopefully a project for sometime this week.

The reason I got the baby wolf going a bit sooner than I would have was because my DD's school friend L asked me if I could be her subject for a project. She's graduating from UT this spring and this is one of her last classes! She is taking photography and they were assigned a project where they had to pick a category from a bunch on the board, then find someone that did that and interview them as well as take pictures of them doing whatever it was. She picked the category "low tech". She came over a week ago to interview me and then this week to take pictures. She took a bunch! I had a project started on the warping board so she could take pictures of that, then the baby wolf almost wound on and I demonstrated threading it for her, etc. I hope she got good pictures so that her project is a success!

It was kind of fun to show her this. She remembers as a child coming for sleepovers and seeing my looms and projects.
Yeah, I see those 2 woven olive green warps. They're still there waiting for the serger. I have to work on some black fabrics first before I change the thread to the green. Changing colors of thread on the serger are just enough of a pain that I try to do everything I can of one color before changing it!
The "new" leclerc, Thelma, is still empty as I decide what to put on her. I want a project that's not too crazy just to test her out, see how she feels!
I guess weaving is low tech. However, I didn't show L all the possibilities with the computer programs, etc. I figured it might be a bit much! Low tech or not, I enjoy weaving and watching the fabric grow as I throw the shuttle!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Little of This & A Little of That.....

I finished off the 48" rug on John, and I'm going to get strips ready to do a special project next. Maybe I'll have it ready to show next week. (Is that called a teaser?) I've been weaving in the living room this week for a lot of reasons....and so starts my tale for today!

My dear friend, Sass, started showing signs of distress last weekend, and I knew the tumor was getting very large. After talking with the Vet on Monday, we decided it was best to let her go on her next journey. She was always with me as I wove in my bedroom, and was a great helper pup when I warped my loom. I found it a little hard to sit down at Julie and weave until yesterday, when I finally was able to work on the mug rugs we had started. This is what she would have wanted me to do. I'm using up some thrums from other projects, and some rags from another. I also played with the treadling on the overshot pattern. This is its own kind of therapy, I think.

It is a little crowded in the bedroom right now, since the kitchen table is also in here (another reason to just weave in the living room.) I had been wanting to get the kitchen floor replaced for some time. Regardless of how much you cleaned that floor, it always looked dirty. And, the bench that was in the kitchen was just that: a bench. I really wanted a bench with a hinged lid so I could store my jelly jars and tins. (It never made sense to me that they built this thing without a hinged lid!) And, wouldn't you know it, this is the week the guys were ready to start. We had a Geraldo moment when the guys took the top off of the bench....what would we find inside???? Nothing! I got a laugh out of Susan's blog over at Thrums. She's going through some remodeling, too. I'm not doing anything that grand! But, with all remodeling work, you have to put up with a mess for a bit.

The highlight of the week was weaving at the KMA. That is so much fun, and I couldn't believe how much cloth was on the beam. Again, I went for lively colors....the person before me must have been having Navajo thoughts. And, I could see that someone else had had Spring thoughts (lots of shades of green.) Ann Wilson was there, and a lot of people wanted to chat. It's always a wonderful experience.

So, I'll get back to my mug rugs while the guys hammer away in the kitchen. They are talking about more snow..........
Happy Weaving!

Friday, February 26, 2010

Tying up loose ends!

Today I have been trying to get a few projects finished up and out of the house.

You may well remember the rugs that a client brought to the center for us to see if we could fix the worn out fringe. We have decided to bind the edges with matching blue jean material.

It seems to be going well, in fact quite well. My only snag right now is that my machines don't seem to be strong enough to do the top stitching for that final touch! So I am sewing the fabric on and then whip stitching the material in place. I believe Carol has a machine that might be able to do the top stitching. I will take them to the center for her to take home next Tuesday.

Here is a look at the edge after Carol had serged the old worn out fringe off. It is a little blurry, but I think you can see the it.

Here is a look at one of the edges after I have gotten it bound but not topstitched.

One or two of the rugs have some very ratty warp threads along one side. I found something similar enough and replaced the last 4 warp threads. I will do the same on the other side so that they match.

Finally, I am also hoping to cut apart the warp I finished at the center and brought home to finish. I have one runner and eight placemats on it! I wasn't the one to plan the warp, but I got to thread it and sure had fun weaving it off.

Wally is snoozing peacefully after an afternoon outside. He has begun to take real ownership of the property and barking at the other dogs in the neighborhood to keep off of his grass!

I have threaded the vari blue wool/black chenille warp from last week, but I am not happy with how it has come out. The threading did not line up like I thought it would. I may have to wind some more black chenille and weight it off the back or something if I can't come up with a solution. Back to the drawing board.

Happy Weaving, Tina

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Thursday Again

I am sorry that I don't have a big story or something to show. I could show the big mess that I have in my studio. I am trying to decide on taking the warp off one loom. It has been on soo long. I am ready for something new. Or, I could just rethread it for a different pattern. I hate to waste. I will probably do that. I have strips all over the place. I will tidy up first then rethread the headles with a different pattern. Ok! That is the plan. OR, I could work on the placemats or wind the warp for the friendship afghan. No, I will stick to the first plan. I have so much floating around in my head. Huum.

Oh, yeah. The Tuesday Weavers will have a website to sell items. It will be part of the AACC site as soon as they put a link to our site. We are ready to tackle the computer selling. It is for a good cause. Part of the proseeds will go to a building fund for expanding. If you have noticed we are very cramped in the basement of the AACC. Don't get me worng. It's a good thing. We have so many looms and people wanting to weave. It is such a good place and we are so lucky to have it and each other! Happy Weaving! Check out the site below. We will be on there soon.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Last week was a busy week at Chez Davidson. My sister Liz and her partner Deedee came from Richmond, VA, and brother Hugh and his wife Jeanne flew in from Phoenix. Everyone squeezed into my ever-shrinking bungalow, and we had a visit. We went to the Museum of Appalachia--across the road from the center where the Tuesday Weavers meet--and did the tour, in freezing, sometimes snowing weather. Every time we get together, someone takes a picture of Liz, Mom and I. This one is now my favorite!
We went to the Knoxville Museum of Art to check out the exhibit, Wind/Rewind/Weave, where a lot of my fellow Tuesday Weavers have been participating in the weaving. Mom checked out the beautiful wall of glass bobbins, while Jeanne and I wound our bobbins. At left, you see Jeanne's very first bobbin, a beautiful combo of purple and turquoise.
It's no surprise that Jeanne's bobbin was a good combination, since she teaches Fair Isle knitting at a yarn store in the Phoenix area. She was busy with 2 sweaters during her visit, one a beautiful cardigan for herself, which will open in the front with a steek, a very scary technique of knitting in the round, then cutting the garment open afterwards to knit the button bands. Scary to me, but she assures me it's easy, once you conquer your fear! The other sweater is a pullover for Hugh, with patterns she designed from Hohokam rock art. Absolutely gorgeous!
And here is the latest edge treatment on my warp of lace hand towels. I snuck out of bed early Sunday morning to have a peaceful moment at the loom and finished the design. I was quite pleased with it, until I noticed it was slightly off center. I realized there were 6 small hearts on one side, and 7 on the other. Curse my math skills! Or at least wish they existed! Here is where I remind myself once again that this warp was for learning, not for perfection.

I have been listening to old WeaveCast episodes at work lately, and one of the first ones, if not the first, is about teaching someone to weave. With Mom and I talking about weaving the whole weekend, and a tour of the Center's weaving department, I could see Jeanne was becoming curious about weaving. After I got past the miscounted heart pattern on the towel, and started the 20 inches of plain weave, I asked her if she'd like to try it. A few quick pointers, and she was off. She threw the shuttle, adjusted the angle, beat twice. She did a great job! I gave her my copy of Debra Chandler's Learning to Weave, which Mom gave me when I was learning to weave. I let her look through my copy of Marguerite Porter Davison's book for inspiration, and could see the hook was set!

Here is my happy student, with her teacher, in my studio. Another weaver has joined the ranks! She has already checked out starting a weaving group at the yarn store where she teaches! My brother assured me that to him, her need for a loom can be used as collateral for bargaining for a new t.v. He's evil, but hey! If it gets Jeanne a new loom, so be it!
Happy weaving, all! Remember, weaving is FUN!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

It's Tuesday again!

Hey all, it is indeed Tuesday again. We caught Carol in the act of putting labels on some placemats that Linda had finished.
Lou Ann is working on some log cabin placemats, don't you love the way the fabric colors are just breaking thru the warp colors!

Pat is plugging away at the multicolored warp.
Bonnie is working on these lace towels.

Maggie is really wowing us with what changing color will do on this multi colored warp.

And of course Wally was back again today, no he doesn't sleep all the time, though it must seem that way to you all. I can only take pics when he is asleep!!

Sharon is back with us again now that the snow has let her out of her house.

Joyce is plugging away at the pinker than pink towel warp.

Carl is really liking this change of color, it isn't everyday we see this green in a warp.

Threading is going on in the student corner.

Carl also brought in some beautiful rugs he wove at home.

That is it for today, Happy weaving everyone, Tina

Monday, February 22, 2010

floor cloth

This past weekend I took a class on how to make a floor cloth. For those who don't know, floor cloths came before linoleum. Floor cloths are made of canvas cloth that has been painted and sealed. My floor cloth is sealed with waterbased polyurathane. It dries quickly. The early ones were sealed with boiled linseed oil and took weeks to dry. The other participants were mostly my friends at Wilderness Road State Park in Ewing, Va. My floor cloth is on the left. This was such a fun way to spend a weekend!

Sunday, February 21, 2010


First of all, this black warp with the bright accent yarn is what's just been on my loom. It's off already and tomorrow I'll wind another warp to take its place. I got the 2 olive color warps done and off. Talk about work ahead, serging, washing, sewing, handwork, crochet to get the pieces done but they're off the loom! This warp was just fun to weave because the accent was a variegated yarn. Black is hard to photograph so it doesn't really capture the pure excitement of the accent yarn but I smiled alot while I wove it.
Yesterday we were in Nashville antiquing. We hadn't gone in about 10 years. In years past, it would take us a day and a half to go through the 2 shows, one at the Fiddlers Inn and the other, Heart of Country, at the Opryland Hotel. Sad to say, we saw both and were done by noon! I guess ebay has made a huge dent into the antique world. Both shows were alot smaller than the last time we'd gone. I had DH take a picture of this blanket. It was hanging on the wall and at this show, I suspect they wouldn't want us to take pictures and I really wanted to catch the idea anyway. It's not a coverlet but more of a blanket. It's woven in two pieces. You can see the seam in the middle. It began even but very quickly the plaids didn't match. Not a problem. It's still very neat. It was woven in a fairly fine wool a long time ago and was in great shape. The warp was about an inch and a half of solid yellow, 2 rows of blue, 2 rows of yellow and then an inch and a half of the blue, 2 rows yellow, 2 rows blue, etc. The effect was quite pleasing.
If one was interested in weaving a blanket but was scared to do an overshot coverlet as the project, this would be a great way to get your feet wet. The hardest thing would be to beat those squares evenly so that you could sew it up the center nicely. We have tricks for that, don't we?!
Another alternative, if one had 4 harnesses back then, would have been for them to have woven it with a fold and then you wouldn't have that problem. It was just plain weave. Could have woven it with a twill too but then you couldn't have the fold if you only had 4 harnesses. You'd have had to weave it in two panels and sew them together.
Made me think of possibilities and that's a good thing!
Oh, the weather today is gorgeous! The temperature right now at 3pm is 61 degrees! What a change from the last few weeks. I'm not sure if we're being lulled into a false sense of security before the next snow hits, but we're taking it!
Hmmm, do I want to get that next warp on the loom or go outside and enjoy the weather?

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Here's A Rug for your Mug!

I really thought I'd be a lot further along on my project on Julie by this time. After all, the warp was measured and chained off before I made my scarf! And, Sass helped me warp the loom a week or two ago. But, have you noticed that sometimes, real life gets in the way of your weaving????

But, none the less, I only have two mug rugs completed on it at this time. The threading is for the overshot pattern, Tennessee Squares. Doing mug rugs gives you the opportunity to play with part of an overshot pattern, and experimenting with different ways to treadle the pattern. When you get tired of playing with the overshot pattern, you can always just treadle plain weave, since that is built in to overshot. It's a great way to use up thrums and thin rags.

The Tuesday Weavers are doing Mugs And Rugs for Christmas this year. (Which comes first: the mug or the rug??? hummm......) I'm ready to start looking for just the perfect mug, and then I'd like to play with the design of the rug to go with it. There are so many opportunities to explore different techniques on a smaller scale.

I use my mug rugs all the daughter has her mug rugs out, my sister has her own set. It keeps those little drips from getting on the table. Handy little suckers!

Happy Weaving

Friday, February 19, 2010

variegated yarn

This yarn has been a problem for me. I have made a full sized shawl out of it, and tried to make a scarf out of it. Nothing seemed work for me. I really did not like the way that the colors pooled in the garments.

I saw on a tutorial, (that I really can't remember where, sorry) about winding variegated yarns around in a circle, matching the spaced dyed colors, so that they are a false IKAT. I immediately thought of this poor yarn that had really had me scratching my head.

10 Yards seemed to be the magic number, and I used only one skein of the three that I have, so if this works out I should be able to repeat it. I think it looks good!

Last year, I found about 12 cones of black chenille at the Salvation Army. I told the other weavers all about it, and we bought all the cones they had. I ended up with one cone at my house and I thought about using it with this yarn.

The wpi are pretty close. I settled 11 epi which gives me 8 inches in the reed. I will be using an 8 harness pattern, Kathryn my new/old 8 harness loom will finally have something on her. I am alternating the vari wool and the black. I am also alternating which end of the vari warp I pull from. Should be interesting.

Next I will thread up the bread cloths on Lillian and the scarf
on Kathryn and I will finally feel like I am getting somewhere. I am not finding the time I thought I had available to weave.

I must look at this more closely this week and see if I can fix that without neglecting my other obligations.

Happy Weaving, Tina

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Old Project

Ok, I will confess. I have not started anything new right now. When I first started weaving, I did my first project at home of place mats and table runner. You know me, I can't try something easy. I used 6 different colors in the warp. In the weft, I made place mats using each color. I made 2 place mats in every of the colors and then a table runner in red. I know some of you guys have seen them. But not on my table. Turquois,red, purple, yellow, blue and green. I learned alot from making these. How patterns shows up different with different colors. Color combining. These were all done with the same pattern. Don't remember what it is right now. Maybe somebody will know it. You can really see it on the yellow. It was a fun project. Also, I love them.
Have a good week. Bonnie