Friday, January 29, 2016

A Little Tool

There has been no weaving again this week, so if you are sick and tired of knitting, feel free to move on.  (Maybe next week!)  There has been knitting, comfort knitting if you will.  I deem a project comfort knitting if I can knit on it and it soothes my troubled heart, or calms my jangled nerves or lets me think on things other than what it going on in my non knitting life.  It seems when one aspect gets straightened out, a whole 'nother thing goes haywire!

Anyway, back to my knitting.  I am as I said last week knitting on 1 pair of socks, of which I am past the heel and making my way down the foot.  This is a good project to take along when I go see my Mother in law where she lives.  She loves to watch my progress, frankly I though I would never get past the heels, but I made it!  (I also have a lace hat cast on, but I haven't had a chance to touch it. )

My main project, my comfort knitting, welcomes me every morning to my day, along with a cup or two of coffee.  It is complicated, it is large, it is a long term project so speed is not a factor and it is just what I need right now to face my world.

Cable needle and Landfall in the sun!
In this project there are a million crossed and twisted running stitches,   at least 2 very large 8 stitch cables and a lovely simple background stitch.  When I first started out, I was trying to manipulate those crossed and twisted stitches, then putting them back on the left hand needle, using my fingers, then knitting them. (thinking I was saving time)  While I was able to do it, I was sometimes unsure as to whether I had put an extra twist in a stitch or not, or split a stitch and the dropped stitches began to get vexing.

I did this on both sleeves, but by the time I cast on the back of the sweater/coat, I realized that those large cables were going to need a cable needle.  At first I only used the cable needle on the big cables, then I began to use it on those crossed and twisted running stitches.  I was amazed at how much easier the rows went when I was sure that the  twisted stitches were not over twisted! My work looked more even, my stitches less crowded, and in general a much more pleasant knit.

This yarn by they way, a '70's worsted  from Germantown yarn, is fabulous!  It is toothy and robust, but not scratchy at all.  The color is magnificent, it changes according to the light it is in, now dark in the shade and now fiery in the sunlight as you can see.  The pattern once again is the "Landfall" pattern, a Sweater Coat if I ever saw one, from Veronik Avery, it is a paid for pattern that you can find on Ravelry.

I will continue to knit on every morning, and here is hoping I can get to the looms sometime soon, or I may have to take a sabbatical from blogging!

Until next time, Happy Crafting, Tina

Thursday, January 28, 2016


  I wish I had a finished Top#64 to show you....but, it's still in the works.  I remembered too late to make the pockets larger (Theresa at are right, these are a wee bit small!)  I ended up using the heavy weight muslin for this first attempt, and I think it is working nicely.
  While JoAnn's had their patterns on sale, I stopped by to have a look.  I was looking for a men's cap pattern (no luck) but found some others that caught my eye.  At $1 each, this was a real bargain.
  I also got a bolt of pattern tracing material.  That should last me for a little bit.

  I emailed Theresa after her comment on Tuesday about our Wolf Pups.  We have five at the Center....they're great because they fold up so we can store them in the aisle between the big looms.
  I love my little Pups, too!  All three of mine have warps on them right now, which is the norm.  Scarves, placemats, mug rugs....they are great for those narrow projects. 

  Keep your fingers crossed that I can show you my top next week.  Who knows....maybe I'll have two to show!!!

Happy Weaving (and sewing!)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Weaver Memes

Weavers really know how to strip!

 Weavers know how to tie one on!

  You can blame these on Polly!!!  It's amazing what goes through your mind while you're weaving!

  Here's a look at the new floor that was installed in the kitchen area of the Studio.  Today, we had two tables set up for table looms.  We have a group from a high school art class that will be visiting the Center in a couple of weeks.  The Potters and the Weavers are providing some activities for them to do during their visit.  Betsy was in charge of getting two table looms set up for them to weave mug rugs.

  It's really too bad they can't be there on a Tuesday when we're all there.  (Of course, there might not be any room for them!)  We have so many different projects on the looms.  But, they will get a chance to go around and look at the looms.

   Our other project of the day was getting the cabinets ready to be moved to the kitchen.  So many things get plopped on the flat surface (for lack of a place to put them.)  Karin jumped in and tidied the back shelves making room for stray cones of thread.   Also, the dyeing equipment was all put in one's ready for Dye Day!


  There will be more beautiful scarves and shawls created for The Ladies to weave.


Shirley is just about finished with her scarf warp, and there might be enough left to weave a cowl.    And, here's a close up of Marie's napkins.  This is from the Strickler book, Number 47.  She started to sample, and just couldn't quit weaving!!!!
  I'm sure the Weavers will have many more memes for me next week!  And, who knows???  We might even have a kitchen again!
Happy Weaving!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Keeping On

It's been a long week of weaving as much as I can. I am 2/3 finished the weaving and 1/3 washed. So much more to do and not a ton of enthusiasm for it. I'm not much for weaving a ton of the same thing. However, knowing that I'm almost done certainly helps.
Last week I posted pictures of the longer panels. 
Here are the shorter panels. The will be 45 inches finished which means I weave 68 inches for shrinkage, casings and hems.
The pattern is the same only different. Same threading, different treadling.
Here's the bit I weave at the top.
This past week saw us on the very tale end of the huge blizzard that paralyzed the east.
Here's what it looked like Wednesday as the snow came down. It's hard to see all the flakes but it was coming down like crazy for awhile. We got about 3 inches.
Then that mostly melted with cold rain. I didn't bother taking pictures of what we got during the second wave....just over an inch. Just enough to keep me from driving anywhere. This morning it should all melt and we'll be fine until the next time! Weather in East Tennessee is so interesting. It changes a lot plus, depending on where you live, can be so different. Just 10 miles north of the center, they had over 10 inches of snow. We had an inch. Schools are all closed north of here today because of the snow. Our kids in Knox County get to go today! They only have 10 built in days for snow and they've already used 3. Should make for an interesting rest of the winter. They predict more snow in February!
I'm ready. I've got my weaving to finish. The last warp is on the loom, ready to thread. 8 more panels to finish. Then the washing, ironing, pinning and sewing to complete. Fun!!
I'm wondering how many of our Tuesday Weavers won't be able to get out tomorrow for weaving. Areas north of us got it so much worse. Those that are still stuck at home should be able to keep weaving on their looms. Weavers never run out of things to do!
Until next week, stay warm and keep weaving!

Friday, January 22, 2016

More Snow

This morning, most of the snow from Wednesday was gone!  I have a wonderful little car that seems to do well in the snow, so when I have to go out in it, I can.  But, when I get the chance, I like nothing better than staying home and working on projects of all kinds.

This weekend will be filled with knitting on my Sweater/Coat, I am almost done with the second sleeve and hope to finish it before Sunday,  I will then start on the back.   Every once in awhile I will see an error that simply needs fixing before I go on, but they are few and far between.  I do not have the pattern memorized, but it just takes a glance at the chart and I know what needs to be done.

The back of this sweater has a more complicated pattern on it and many more stitches!  I will be using circular needles instead of long straight needles.  I really should do a swatch to make sure that the gauge will be the same, maybe I will do that tonight so that it can dry before I need to cast on.

Today, as I was at the Walmart to pick up a few things, I picked up some Pellon tracing paper.  I am determined to sew up a couple of skirts with the fabric and the patterns I have on hand.  To help me with the total brainwashing necessary for me to enjoy this kind of activity, I have purchased a book written by Carolyn N.K. Denham of Merchant and Mills.  It is the "Elementary Sewing Skills" book, and I found it used online.

It goes through the most elemental sewing terms and techniques, which for me is perfect.  I am no stranger to my sewing machine, but we do not know each other very well at all!  I have purchased a couple of the dress patterns from M&M, but I hesitate to start off using them.  Today, while the  freezing rain is falling outside, I went through my old patterns and chose out a skirt pattern that according to the measurements on the back of the envelope, should fit me.  Never mind that the number on said pattern size is not at all what I buy when I purchase ready to wear!    (I won't tell you in which direction those numbers went!)

I traced off the first pattern piece and held it up to my body.  There was no way that I would be able to sew a seam and still have the thing go around my body!  I ended up adding an inch to each piece, in order to accomplish this feat.  I am using some fabric that is in a wrap around skirt that I will never ever wear again, (especially now since it is all cut up!) but I know it is washed and dried.

I brought the featherweight downstairs to warm up for awhile before I begin sewing, I figure a cold sewing machine would be fussier than a warm one.

I suppose that tonight, I am sewing my first wearable muslin, I hope I can wear it!

Until next time, Happy Crafting, Tina

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Staying Warm

  For the first time since Sunday, the temps got above freezing this afternoon!  That means that the snow that fell all day Wednesday got a chance to start melting.
  I took this picture yesterday from my front porch.  It was one of those snow storms that alternated between big flakes and the finer ice-like flakes.  The streets were completely covered...and stayed that way until early this morning when the snowplows came through.  With the sun shining and the temps going up, the lower part of my driveway cleared by one o'clock.  YEAH!

  I was ready to go, too!  With the next storm front on the way, I figure I'll be snowed in for the weekend.  Me and lots of my best friends were all at the store stocking up on just a few little things!

  I've got my weekend project underway....finally getting this pattern traced!  I thought I had found the perfect piece of fabric at the Center, but after I washed it, I think it might be too stiff for this project.  I'll dig back in my stash for another piece or two.  After all, the first one is the test project, right????

  Who knows....maybe I'll get the looms going again, too.  I could weave off that placemat warp that I did for my niece.  (She loved them, by the way.)  I think I have enough warp to do 4 more placemats.
  Let it snow.........I have plenty to keep me warm!

Happy Weaving!  (and sewing!)

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Before The Snow

There was no calm before this storm......we walked into lots and lots of activity and precious little space to weave today.  BUT, we are not complaining!  The new kitchen area is taking shape, and we just try to stay out of the way.
  The old counter is now gone, as are the cabinets in this picture.  The new flooring will go down before they start installing the new cabinets.

  And this was Cayce's first day with the Tuesday Weavers!!!  Carol didn't miss a beat as she got Cayce off and running......winding her very first warp. 

  Michelle was back with us today, too.  I guess we didn't scare her too badly! 

You can just imagine....walking into studio was just a little crazy this morning.  We weren't sure for awhile if they had more they were going to do.....did we need to clear out of the way???


  Then, we got the word....they were finished with what they had to out rolled the Pups, and our Ladies got to work!

  Marie is tied on and ready to start sampling.  There seems to be a crossed thread right smack dab in the middle, though!!!  You know she'll get it fixed!

  Sharon is still working on her clasped weft wool rug...those colors just zig and zag across the surface.
   Jocelyn winds several bobbins at a time...but she sure does weave them up quickly!!!!

  Linda is making some headway with the walker looks like several are wound up on the cloth beam.

  Polly helped out by adding heddles for one of the looms (my personal least favorite job!)  Betsy has been playing with some of her new threads and made a sample to see how they would feel for scarves. 

  Tina spent the morning helping me get the new warp on Big Bertha.  It's ready for me to start threading next week AFTER I add heddles to shafts 5-8!  Oh Boy!!!!!

  Remember the strips that Pat cut last week???  Here they are in Carl's new rug!  Those plaids and the red fabric are playing very nicely in this rug.

  Who knows what we'll walk into next's always an adventure!
  They are calling for snow during the night, and the local schools are already closing.  That means the Center will be closed tomorrow!  I'm just glad we had today.

Happy Weaving!

Monday, January 18, 2016

A Good Start

This past week I finally had time to get going on my curtain order. A lot of each panel is plain weave but with some overshot stripes. These are the taller window panels. They want them 60 inches finished so I wove them 85 inches. That gives me plenty for shrinkage, casing and hems. 
The double section of pattern is near the bottom of the curtain. I don't weave overshot that often so it's a change for me. Change is good, keeps me on my toes and makes for an interesting project.
Near the top of each of these panels I wove another small pattern area. The trick to it all is careful measuring as I weave. Planning first to know the exact lengths between each section is important. Once that's done, it's just a matter of moving the measuring tape as I advance the warp. It's crucial that accurate measuring happens. I measure with no tension on the warp.
I have another set of curtains that I'm weaving for shorter windows. In figuring out my warps, I ended up weaving half of the longer panels and some shorter ones. I thought I had plenty of warp.....
But I didn't. I was sweating bullets near the end but I just barely made it!!
Not much room at the beater, either! 
When I figured out this project, I decided to wind 3 warps.  Two of them to be identical length. However, with the close call on the first warp, I did add length to the second warp. I've begun weaving it and hope to get it done this week so I can do the last one next week. Life seems to keep interrupting my weaving time but I'll do my best to get the panels woven for the 12 windows.
We've got a real cold snap this week with temps going down to the low teens at night and mid 20s during the day. If we didn't have weaving tomorrow, I'd sure stay home and weave. However we do and we'll warm up that space with laughter and throwing shuttles. 
Tonight I think I'll make a pot of chili after weaving several panels. Then, pull on an afghan and read a book!
Until next week, stay warm and keep weaving!!

Friday, January 15, 2016

In my spare time

I have been busy "otherwise" again this week, but I have managed to keep going on a couple of projects in my spare time.  First thing to post about is the sweater/coat I am working on for next year, "Landfall" by Veronica Avery.  I have made it almost all the way thru the sleeve increases on the first sleeve.

Those little stitch markers are really a big help, and you can also see that I am using a row counter on my long straight knitting needles.  I couldn't do without it!

There is so much texture in this sweater coat, but I am finally getting in the groove, I know that because I don't have to look and see what the symbols on the chart mean, I already know it!

Next in line is a spinning project for a weaving project.  You may remember the post from a couple of weeks back where I spun a really bright single and paired it with a medium grey.

Now I am filling bobbin after bobbin with just the grey, I will pair both of these yarns plus some silk I am spinning to make some shawls and scarves for next years show.  One of the Weavers a week before last showed us a scarf that was stunning!  There were  so many different yarns and beads and ribbon too, it spurred me to try and think outside my normal creative mindset, to see what I could come up with.  I may even take a look at a few of my finished scarves to see if I can spruce them up a bit too!

Lastly, I have been seeing some mention, in several blogs and from a couple of my friends, you know who you are, about the patterns at "Merchant and Mills".  I did some looking around online last week and ordered a couple of dress patterns to try.  It is simple clothing, that I hope my limited sewing confidence can embrace and be bolstered!  Stay tuned!

Until next time, Happy Crafting, Tina

Thursday, January 14, 2016


  HA!  I bet you were thinking that I was thinking about this kind of apron!

  Well, I do think about aprons a lot....but, not this time!

  Loom Aprons!  Does your loom have an apron?

  I'm making front and back aprons for a friend's loom, and it has got me thinking about them. 

  For instance, my 8-harness Standard Schacht has an apron on the warp beam, but these strings on the front! While I've got the heavy muslin out, I might as well make a front apron for this loom.  (Of course that also means I need to weave this towel warp off the loom!)

And, while I'm sewing, why not front and back aprons for the Baby Wolf?

My Baby Wolf came to me dripping nuts and bolts up the driveway!  It was partially taken apart, and shipped in two large boxes. 

  I learned a lot about looms as I put her back together again.  She had lost one piece on the back, but a friend of mine made another one and screwed it into place.
  Thanks to the Schacht website, I was able to lace the string-ties on the beams, and they have worked fine for me.  But, I think it's time to give her a little lift. 
  Then, I'll need to put a warp on her!

OH....I'd best get busy.  Aprons......

Happy Weaving!  (and sewing!)

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Plenty To Do

  You'd never know these ladies just went to the Woolery and bought new yarn!  Oh, no!  They were all over this assortment of yarn that came from Barbara's stash!  Barbara is a local weaver that is now weaving mainly tapestry.  She's been clearing out her stash of yarn and books, and the Tuesday Weavers stepped up to the plate.  There were plenty of happy weavers this morning!

  The looms were back in business as the weavers moved to their spots.  Ms. Ila is winding a new warp to be dyed at the end of the month....I bet it just might be another shawl (or two!) 

  Jocelyn is making steady progress on her placemat warp.

  That's Marie at the Macomber.....she was busy sleying the reed.  As soon as she gets tied on the front beam, she'll be off and weaving!

  Linda and Sharon were just to the right of Marie.  (It's too bad I can't stitch these two pictures together!)  There are so many conversations going on in the Studio!!!

  Betsy was back with us today....without her arm sling!!!!  She's weaving on her little Inkle loom right now.

Frieda is making great progress with the scarf warp.

  Carl is just about finished with this rug (flannel plaid.)  Pat cut strips for the next rug today.  It's a mixture of several plaids and solid red.  I can't wait to see it on the loom.

  Remember the warp that Tina wound on the little Macomber???  Karin was busy today getting it threaded in the 8 harness rosepath.  Those are going to be such fun towels!!!

  Polly and Irene finished up their first warps today!!!!! 

Wonder what they will weave next???

  Parting shot:  wonder what they are up to????

I'm sure they weren't checking Power Ball tickets!

Happy Weaving!