Monday, November 30, 2015

Not Much Here!

So in thinking about this past week, it's obvious that no weaving happened! It was hectic. A trip to Atlanta and another to London, KY made for some fun times but weaving took a very back burner this time!!
I did pull out all the balls of painted weft left over from the projects woven the last month.
They looked pitiful. Bamboo is soft, pliable, and a bit tricky at times. It tangles quite easily. When I wound bobbins for weft, I pulled from the center. The same when I was crocheting edges. The result was that the leftover bits were a mess.

Also, there were 3 skeins that needed to become balls as well. So as time permitted, I spent time re-balling the yarns.
I do love the ball winder from Strauch. It holds up to a 2 lb ball of yarn. 
They look so much better now. Ready to store, they're waiting for the project I'll use them in.
There are still 2 skeins left to wind. Hopefully I'll have time this afternoon to do that. I really need to get a new warp on later this week. My last show is over but there's still an order or two to get done. Then there's next year to think about and yarn to many ideas to think about and get listed for next time.
It's easy to be distracted this time of year and I think we should heed the call to have some fun and do some extra shopping. I love going to the shops that sell Christmas ornaments and decorations. Even if I don't buy anything, it sets the mood for celebrating. That's why this blog is late today!!  I refused to go get into the Black Friday crowds but today there weren't crowds where I was. 
Hopefully you will get some creative work done before next week and maybe even throw a shuttle or two!
Until next week, enjoy!

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Begin Again

  And, another one is in the books...

  We did OK....not great, but OK.  A lot of those ornaments that we made at the 11th hour did not come back with us....SOLD!

  All of those placemats that we wove....most of them came back with us.  But, the shelves sure did look GREAT!  There's always next year!

  Today we got all the show equipment tucked away, and Marie checked-in the inventory from upstairs.  We have a missing scarf that Harriet wove, and I hope it's tucked away in one of the weavers' stash.  We'll keep looking.

So, we're back to doing what we do best:  weaving!!!!

  Carol serged the edges on the placemats that Lanny took off of his loom.  The twelve that he wove are going home with him!  The placemats in the picture were woven by one of our other weavers....they will get hemmed and taken upstairs.

  Carol was also busy with Connie, one of our new weavers.  She's ready to start weaving on her first warp. 
  Casey finished her first one, and was starting on her new warp.  Busy, busy, busy!!!!

  Linda took Irene in the Potter's studio (no one was working in there today) to stretch out the warp for this vintage rigid heddle loom. 

  The Ladies got right back to work on their warps.  Shirley is checking the treadling order for her newest scarf.

 And, right across from the Ladies, Frieda and Sharon were weaving on their scarves.

  We got the news that Betsy took a tumble and will be out for, Sharon decided this will be a good time to weave some rugs on that loom.  She and Linda looked over the yarn on the shelf to see what they could use.

  Carl just kept on weaving....

And, Jocelyn was busy at her loom, too. 
  She is wearing her newest scarf that she wove:  a six shaft snowflake design!!!  Isn't it lovely!!!!

  And, here's the Birthday Girl!  Happy Birthday, Sharon! 
(Just don't ask her how old she is......)

Now we'll get ready for the holidays, and set our goals for next year.....only eleven months until the first show!!!!

Happy Weaving!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Foothills Craft Show

This morning all of us Tuesday Weavers are relaxing, thankful that the last show of the year is done!!  It was the 3 day Foothills Craft Fair here in Knoxville. It's a high end, juried show where you have to submit items to just become a member. It's not easy to get in but once you are, you can do their show each year. Back in 2011, we were juried in as an educational center. It is what we are, teaching classes and educating the public on what weaving is. So we've done the show each year since.
This year we decided to try to have some lower end items for sale. Hair clips, pins, key chains were there to temp customers along with our regular stock of rugs, placemat, scarves and bags. 
I didn't take pictures until the second day so a lot of things had sold from the trees but you can still see some of the ornaments we made from scraps of handwoven fabrics. The group booth is right next to mine and we left a space open between them. 

We had 2 small trees. One on each side of the booth.
The lighting isn't great here but you can see how mine is always set up, colors prominently featured.
It's been so much fun playing with the MX dyes and then weaving vests and pullovers in bamboo. In January we plan to have another few dye days so we can get more done. I do need more pullovers. Deciding what colors to do and what wefts to put with which warps makes for a fun day!!
Knowing that some of these pieces found new, good homes is very satisfying. Oh, and don't you like my new rug? The old one wasn't nice anymore plus it was heavy and bulky, hard to transport in the van. This one is actually a bit bigger but because it's thinner, it folds up. Tuesday Weavers have the same one. Got them at Home Depot for less than $40 each!! They're actually plastic but once taped down to the floor, sturdy. Never slipped on them.
So today is the end of the year inventory. What do I take to a couple of shops and what stays here for next time? Also, what do I need to weave for next year? That all starts today. This morning I didn't get up til 9. Pure luxury!! I may take a break later on, put my feet up and read a book. But then, it's back to organizing the studio, moving the piles that got stacked the last couple of months as I got ready for these shows. Can't really hibernate. Too many ideas and projects to do!
Isn't that great?
Til next week, keep weaving! My loom is empty and it'll be pulling at me by the time I come home from weaving tomorrow!

Friday, November 20, 2015

Looking Ahead

I finished my inventory for the show on Monday.  As the last placemats were drying, you would think I would heave a big sigh of relief and put my feet up.  But you would be wrong!  I may have heaved that sigh, but my mind was already plotting ideas for next years shows.  I may say this every year, but I really want to be pro active about show prep next time.  (I should probably check one of my post from last year!)

With that in mind, I had already chosen an new band to put on my Inkle loom to use for the new key chains I have been making.  I only had a few to take to this show, but I really like how they turned out! I got the band warped up in no time, and  wove a few repeats to see how it looked.  After just this much woven, I almost have the pattern memorized.

This is the new band, it is just a little wider than the previous one, and I managed to make it a couple of yards longer too.  I have put too many yards on my Leclerc Floor Inkle loom before, and not been able to advance the project and I ended up having to cut it off.  I probably have 5 to 6 yards on this one.

If I can manage a new band every 2 months that will be 6 different patterns for the key chains.  That would really look wonderful!

Wish us luck on the show for today through Sunday evening, when we will break down and take everything back home again.

Until next time, Happy Crafting, Tina

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Let It Begin

  Remember when we challenged the Tuesday Weavers to weave a dozen placemats for the Fall sales????  Well....they came through for us!  Look how nice the shelves look in our booth!

  Lots of variety of fantastic placemats....and plenty of each, to boot!!!!

  But, I got a little ahead of myself.  Here is how it looked this morning when I got to the Jacob's Building.  Tina and Marie already had the new rug down (doesn't it look nice!) and they were busy getting the panels up on the little feet.'s always fun to get a shot of the ladies while they work.....either that or they landed in jail!

  Next door, Carol was giving her hubby directions.  By the way, Carol, thank you for loaning us the lights and extra power cords!  They are on our list to buy for next year.  It might be time to have our own!!!!

  As the panels went up, and each one got tightened, we talked our way through what we wanted to do with the rest of the booth.  All our woven items were waiting in tubs and bags to be put in place.

We got the curtains in place along with the lights, then we started unpacking all the lovely woven items.  Needless to say, we moved and rearranged many times during the process.

  It's done! 

I think we're ready!  I have no doubts that the ladies that work tomorrow will be busy rearranging the booth again as they work.  That's just the nature of working in the booth!  (Besides, it's fun to "fluff" the shelves!!!)
  Wish us has begun!

Happy Weaving (and Fall sales!)

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

We're Ready!

  Once again, Marie spent the morning on her computer, getting the items for the Foothills Fine Arts Show logged in to the database.  Dish towels, scarves, mug rugs and a bunch of other items were quickly read off by Tina.  Jocelyn then carefully stored them in a tub to take to the show.

  Meanwhile, Margi and Frieda and several others put the finishing touches on hair bows, pins and ornaments.  These, too, will be going to the show.

  Shirley and Bonnie quickly got the mug rug warp on the Pup....we always weave at the show!    Carol figured out a mini Ellen's pattern to use with the mug rugs!  (It is based on  Tutti-Fruiti pattern--the one we use for our signature placemats.)  You can just barely see Harriet in the background:  she's winding more yarn for the straw loom kits.

  Then, it was over to the counter to make the straw looms to go in the kits.  Linda was in charge of counting the kits and making sure they had their straws.  She also made the stickers for each kit.

  Can you imagine being a new weaver in the middle of all of this????  Carol assisted Connie and Casey with their threading.....just a straight draw for the first one.  They'll be old hands at it soon enough!

Carl and Lanny were the only two actually WEAVING today!!!!  Sometimes, you just put your head down and weave!  Lanny needed to do a count to see if he had enough placemats already woven....I think he decided that he needed just a few more!

  Carl brought a tapestry that he just finished to show us after lunch.  Isn't that wonderful!!!

  And, yes....we did have a potluck lunch today....and I didn't take even one picture of the spread!  It was great, as usual. 
  We got the tubs loaded in the cars, and all that was left was finishing up the ornaments for the tree.  Sharon tagged them and gave Tina a final count for the inventory list.

  It looks like we're ready to go.

Stay tuned for updates on the show!!!!

*****A big shout-out to Betsy....we're thinking of you!  We hope to see you soon.

Happy Weaving!

Monday, November 16, 2015

New Puzzles

When we're at the center, we never know what we'll be asked to take. We take everything that is offered to us and then figure out where we can use it or find someone that can. We've gotten everything from fabric to looms to books to sewing machines but this past week we got something new.

Months ago we found out that a former Tuesday Weaver had passed away and we were asked to help with the looms, yarn, etc that she and her husband had acquired. We ended up having a silent auction just among our group and had a blast outbidding each other. Much as we hated to say goodbye to Dorothy, it was good to know that she would have had a blast laughing at our antics while we figured out who would be using the looms and accessories now. We did inherit a 45 inch Nilus Leclerc that Jocelyn weaves on each Tuesday.  

A couple of weeks ago I got a call from Dorothy's cousin about some sewing machines they had and some fur sewing machines. (Dorothy and her husband owned a fur business, sewing fur coats, etc many years ago and these were her husband's machines from the business) Of course I said we'd take them! Thursday about a half dozen of us met at their country home to see what we got. I forgot to take pictures of the sewing machines but there were 4 of them. Two in cabinets and 2 in cases. There's a Kenmore and some Singers. I think these will clean up nicely and be usable, even the old Singer that still has a bit of wood attached to it from a long ago cabinet. I wonder whose Morher sewed on it. 

Who knew what a fur sewing machine was? None of us!! I thought it'd be just an industrial sewing machine which we certainly can use. Doesn't look anything like that plus there were 3 of them!!
Ever seen anything like it? We googled the name on the machine and found a you tube tutorial on how it worked. Fascinating!! You sew with the fabric going between the discs which press the fur together. Fabric is vertical, not horizontal!!  My question is, will we be able to adapt it to see the things we were hoping to sew with it.  We shall see.
So, the puzzle.
This week is our Foothills Craft Guild Show. We'll spend all week getting ready for that so this puzzle will go in the background til next week.....Sharen took one of the fur machines home plus one of the sewing machines. I'm hoping that between her and her husband they can figure it out. The machines have all been up on the second floor of a garage, not exactly temperature controlled but inside at least. The good thing is that Dorothy's cousin had some workmen bring them downstairs for us. There is no way we could have done that. The fur machines are heavy!!! 
Stay tuned for updates on that!

Until next week, keep weaving and expanding your horizons with something new!! 

Friday, November 13, 2015

Fine Tuning

Everything is a mess up here in the studio, as I fine tune the small articles I am bringing to the show.  I had taken some key chains to the center last Tuesday, I had made out of an inkle woven band I had finished.  I already knew that I wasn't happy with the findings I was using, and I thought I knew what I needed to change. 
Turns out, I needed to go in a different direction totally.  I had caught sight. yesterday, of something my daughter had her keys on, and I decided that I liked that approach better.  I went to the local store and searched until I found some new findings to complete what I had on hand.

 The keychain on the left has a ribbon crimp, (that is too big) and a dinky jump ring and a normal key ring.  I had thought that I just needed to replace the jump ring with something more substantial. 

However, when I saw the claw clip on my daughters key ring, I was convinced that it was a winner.  I added a second heavier key ring and sewed it on the sewing machine after I used some machine stay stitching and fabric glue to stabilize the ends.

I really like this new key chain idea,  I can see me doing much longer bands too, since that seems to be all the rage right now.  I am adding that to my plans for next year.

Until next week, Happy Crafting, Tina

Thursday, November 12, 2015

It Could Happen To Me

  It has happened to me!  There have been lots of times when I have been weaving overshot and lost my place....I guess that's one reason why I'm so proficient at unweaving!!!  So, you can imagine how easy it would be to make a mistake when you are weaving at the Studio with all the excitement in the air!

  This throw was woven in the Studio recently and it was brought down from the shop because one of the corners had gotten some dirt on it.  Carol needed someone to take it home for a good spa treatment, and I volunteered.  It was when I started giving it a good steam press that I kept thinking that something just wasn't right.  That's when I noticed the wider stripes.....Oh NO!!!!
  Stuff happens...but, it does make me more aware of checking my items before they go to the sales.  I have placemats that are ready to be hemmed, and two shawls that need an eagle eye to check them out.  This has been a reminder to check carefully.  I wouldn't want a customer to get home and see a mistake in my work.
  So, I'm getting back to the items I need to finish.

Happy Weaving (and checking!!!)


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

We've Become A Sweatshop!!! Oh, No!!!


  Sweatshop or Workshop?  Either way, that's what the Studio looked like today!  We were on a roll making ornaments from left over pieces of our weaving. 

Betsy staked out a spot to work on her gingerbread man garland. 

  Frieda and friends had buttons, sequins and shiny threads to decorate the different ornament shapes.

  And, believe it or not, some folks were even doing a little weaving while all of that was going on!!!

  Now.....way back in the kitchen, you can barely see Carol, Marie and Tina.  We were working on the booth design for next week.  It's funny, but we change it up a little from year to year.  And, it will change again when we start to set it up next Thursday.

    Pat got busy cutting the strips for Carl's newest rug.  He sews the pieces all the long edge and creates a large circle....then you just run it through the cutter in one long strip!

  You can see Anna and Sharen in the background....Anna finished that rug this afternoon.

  Those loopers make a really cushy rug!

Carl got started on his rug after Pat finished the strips.  Isn't it fun how different fabrics work together to make a great rug!!!!

's the Ladies....on their phones!!!!  I'm sure they were looking up weaving information!

  Jocelyn kept busy on her sparkly blue placemats today.  We found out that the ones she finished early in October have already sold upstairs!  Weave on!!!!

  A special shout out to our favorite Marine on the 240th birthday of the United States Marines.
  Lanny....we are so honored to have you as a Tuesday Weaver!!!!

Next week will be a whirlwind....batten down the hatches, folks!  And, in the meantime,
Happy Weaving!