Friday, July 28, 2017

Looper Rug

I have not finished the looper rug that is on the rug loom yet,  I got distracted.  I thought I could at least share with you some pictures of my progress so far.

After a tiny bit of sampling, I figured out that it takes 4 rows of loopers on the rug to make 2 inches, and around 7 loopers to make it across the loom.  Once I had that information, I made some rough chains with a stripped rug in mind.

I think it is going well, even if it is a little fiddly.

Close up,  these loopers are very different than the ones I used on the previous rug.  These are heftier and at the same time shorter, that is why I had to sample.

You can easily see the difference in the selvedge tuft on the 2 rugs.  This second rug will be much more substantial all around, and it will be fun to compare the two once they are off of the loom.

I hope to finish this rug this week or next, because I have many more color combinations of loopers that I want to try, but life, and distractions, often get in the way.

Until next time, Happy Weaving, Tina

Tuesday, July 25, 2017


  The Anderson County Fair is over, but, Carl got to share his ribbon winning entries with the Weavers today.  The number one question was, "What kind of rug won the BLUE ribbon?"
  I wasn't as concerned about checking on the competition as I was seeing how our entries did!!!  I promise to take careful notes next year!

  Tina went to a fiber show this weekend, and came home with some lovely braids to play with.  (And, they are super lovely to touch, too!!!!)  Stay tuned to her blogs to see what she has planned!

   I'm sure Carol is planning all kinds of projects that she's going to do with her sister in the coming weeks!
  It looks like Alyce is almost finished with her warp....that means she'll be planning her next project!  Helen is probably close to being finished, too. 

   Carl finished the threading, and it was time to wind on that red warp.  With Tina and Carl holding the reins, we wound that puppy onto the warp beam.  After tying on next week, there will be a new batch of blue jean rugs!!!

  Ms. Ila works hard keeping the Ladies on task.    Or, at least, she says she's working hard.......

  Marie is starting the next shawl on the bold pink warp.  I think this one will have a light gray weft...we'll check on that next week.
  Linda is back from her trip and working on her placemat warp.  She has quite a few finished ones wound up on the cloth beam!

  Sharon and Liz were working in the middle of the pack of "wolves."  That means more scarves for the fall sales!

  WOW!!!!  Four shawls came off of Jocelyn's loom this afternoon!  Now this is some kind of wonderful!!!

  As we finish up the projects on our looms, we're thinking about the Fall sales, which will be here before we know it! 

So much to little time!!!!

Happy Weaving!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Summer Guild Fair

Summer guild fair is in the books! This year the Southern Highland Craft Fair was only 3 days long. The big controversy is whether we should continue at 3days or go back to 4. Four days is a very long time but having the extra day for sales can be beneficial. 
I had a good show.
Taking pictures with my iPad probably isn't the smartest thing to do but when the lights are dimmed, it's the best I can do.
My booth is a mixture of cotton and bamboo. The drapey pieces are bamboo and the others are cotton. A fair number of these pieces found new homes over the weekend.
This picture below doesn't show the beautiful caribe of the top on the left or the royal blue on the right but you get the idea of display.
A rack of jackets just waiting to tempt people.
Black and red. The jacket on the right is predominantly black, the one on the right predominantly red. Both of them plus the purse on the left found new homes.
Black, grey and white jackets look stunning on the right person. It's got a new home, too. She looked awesome with this jacket on.
My summers are very hectic. After the convention in Nashville for a week, then the guild fair this weekend, I have to shift gears again and quickly get things packed away til the show in October. That's because I leave Wednesday for my annual trip north to visit my sister. DH will be home taking care of the cats and collecting all the treasures they find in my studio and bring up the stairs. Those cats are a mess. He keeps saying he's going to get a camera to see which one it is. I suspect Belle is the one. Thursday morning when I was coming down the steps to the studio, there was a lb cone of yarn on the third step. Those cats managed to get it off the cutting table to the floor and carried it up three steps. No telling what they'll do next! Good thing they also catch mice. DH can take care of those, too!
No weaving for me the next month but I hope you have time to throw your shuttle a time or two!
Until next time, keep weaving!

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

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Anderson County Fair

  We all know that Carl is a WINNER, but this just proves our point!

  He had three BLUE ribbons:  his tapestry, the Christmas card, and his table runner.

  His scarf and blue jean rug both received RED ribbons.  (Personally, I think his rug should have gotten the blue ribbon!!!!)

My scarf and placemat received BLUE ribbons!
(This scarf is my Aurora Borealis scarf that I painted.)
  The placemat is a huck variation.
 My other entries did not receive any ribbons.

 No visit to the Fair is complete without a corn dog, which I totally enjoyed.  (When I was growing up, we called them "dip dogs.")
  Marie will be at the Fair on Saturday.  She is demonstrating weaving on her rigid heddle loom!

Now, back to projects here at home!
Happy Weaving!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Warp Off....Warp On!

  As promised, Carl got busy sleying his new warp on the barn loom.  


  This afternoon, he was half way through threading the heddles.  That means that he will finish threading next week, and we'll wind on the new warp.
  Won't that red warp look great with the blue jeans!!!!

 Betsy got some advice from Carol and Pat concerning the tie-up and treadling for a new project.  
  On the table, you can see the re-weave rug ready for pickup!  And, those are some of Carl's card inserts that are ready to be mounted.
   There's always news to catch up on, and weaving to discuss.  Liz is looking for a floor loom.....she's ready to start her home studio.  (Should we tell her that this is just the beginning???)

  Vacation time has a smaller crew at work, but, still a lot of weaving!

Happy Weaving!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Another Good One!

Every year we spend a week in Nashville. This was our 33rd annual Chet Atkins Appreciation Society convention. Starting Wednesday, it went through Saturday evening. It's nonstop music on 2 stages with workshops, vendors and informal music everywhere with an emphasis on learning the guitar and Chet's finger style way of playing.
This year I had to get an almost new registration crew. I'm so thankful that Linda and Christy of the Tuesday Weavers agreed to help. Their husbands were a huge help as well. I put them in charge of tshirt and CD sales. It was great not to have to worry about that table. I knew they were taking care of it all. Each year at noon of Friday we get our picture taken and Sally orders us a bunch of pizzas. This year our picture didn't get taken til about 7pm but the pizza was on time!
Someone got this picture of Mark and me at the reg desk. I am at the desk all day from 9am til  about 10pm. Someone has to do it so I volunteer. Often in the evening people will drop by to visit and we enjoy getting to know them.
Saturday evening is the grand finale. This year we had a plaque made for Bill Spann who'd been MC for 31 years. He was too frail to make the trip so we made a presentation for him anyway but what we didn't know was that one was made for us as well. What a huge surprise.
Mark certainly deserves it for all the work he puts into planning what's become essentially a family reunion of musicians and those who enjoy listening. It's a huge undertaking to schedule the 60 plus performers with 2 stages and 2 workshop rooms, hotel rooms and flight schedules. 
Each year something special happens. This year it was a 12 year old dynamo from Croatia who played incredibly well.
We're not sure what next year will bring. We haven't signed the contract yet. Legal stuff is required first but if we do, there are hundreds of guys out there just waiting to see when we can do this all over again!
This week I won't get any weaving done but I'll be finishing some pieces I wove earlier. It's going to be awhile before you'll hear the beat of the loom again at this house but I'm looking forward to it!
Until next week, keep weaving 

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Vibrant Color

I was distracted this week by a new arrival.  LouAnn has kindly "long term" loaned me her rug loom.  I went to LouAnn's house on Wednesday to disassemble and transport the loom.  It was a hot day, and though we made short work of the "taking apart" phase of the project, we took an ice tea break before we loaded "John" into the truck.  I mentioned to LouAnn that the older I get the less fun this part of loom acquisition is, though I think if the heat index wasn't quite so high, I would have enjoyed it a little more.

We loaded up the loom and off I went to the other side of the Ridge, and after a glass of iced water, I took the loom upstairs piece by piece.  I have taken apart and put together many, many looms over the last 16 years, and this may have been by far, the easiest one yet.  Within an hour I was threading the colorful warp that was left on the warp beam.

LouAnn texted me later on that afternoon to see if I wanted her to come over the next day to help me put the loom together.  I sent her this picture, with the quote, "sometimes I can focus".

I had had the fantastic idea, or so I thought, to use sock loopers in a shag technique.  It was really terrible, really terrible in fact, so terrible I don't even have pictures!  As I was looking around to see what I could use on this colorful warp, I found a basket of colorful loopers already chained, from "Crazy as a Loom", they had been taken out of a failed rug attempt a long time ago.

It had been one of my first attempts at rug weaving and I had not taken into account the springiness of the loopers, consequently the edges had drawn in dramatically.  Those balls of chained loopers have been around several years, so when I found them stashed below the old sewing machine cabinet, I almost shouted "Eureka!"  Weaving down the magnitude of my stash is one of the reasons I wanted a rug loom in the first place.

I think these two vibrant rug ingredients are throwing a party!  This is the last of these vibrant loopers, but not the last of the loopers or of this warp, next up I will see what this warp does to a more sedate weft choice.

Until next time, weave a rug!  Tina

Thursday, July 13, 2017

We're On The List!

  We got the notice that we've been put on the list of the Top 100 Weaving Blogs & Websites by Feedspot.  You can see the list here:
  We are #72, and Tina is #78!!!!  As I read down the list, I saw many of the blogs that I read, as well as some that I would like to read.  A big thank you to Feedspot for the honor, and to all the folks that stop by from time to time to read our blog.

  I cut off the warp of one blue jean rug and three tote bags the other night.  The white tote bags are already washed and waiting for their turn with the sewing machine.  One of them will be going to the Anderson County Fair on Saturday.  I've got Carl's entries in the car already, and I'm getting mine ready to go.  Keep your fingers crossed for us.  I'll try to get pictures next week!

Happy Weaving!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Just Us!

  We had several things to do on our list today, so we hit the floor running!!!

We got Carl's rugs off of the loom, rolled them out on the floor, and got them cut apart.  

FIVE beautiful blue jean rugs!!!!
(The first rug is the re-weave rug!  I hope that lady has a discussion with her fur baby before she puts it on the floor!)

The fringes were tied, and the rugs are ready to be tagged next week when Carol gets back.


 Meanwhile, out back, Tina and I tackled the privet that is growing by the annex's porch.  It was starting to get a little wild!

  We did one pickup load of privet and weeds!

Man O was hot!  

   Inside the Studio it was nice and cool....a great way to spend our summer day.  We were the few, the cool, the WEAVERS!!!!
(P.S.  Betsy had to leave early, and Marie was working upstairs!)

Happy Weaving!