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Showing posts from 2016

A Belated Wish

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Hello again.  I have been quite remiss in my efforts to keep blogging of late, but I think for good reason.  There were the upcoming holidays, of course, but also a slight shift in my thinking about my weaving future.  I wanted to take some time to really consider where I was and in which direction I was headed.  Though the thought processes are still not totally solidified, I do feel confident that I am getting out of the baby-wearing realm, except for gifting or perhaps a favor here and there.  The new regs are finally being considered, and though there is to be a 12 month grace period. my life and all that is required really doesn't allow me to be as active on social media as I have to be to succeed. I was finding myself pulled in too many directions, and always trying to cram in more weaving to keep the business active and exciting, along with everything else that one has to do with a full time job and a house to run.  This past year was my most successful as a business, mostl…

My First Inkling (Pun Intended)!

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As promised, here is the outcome of that new inkle band project I last wrote about.  Aren't they cute???


The idea is from Handwoven Nov/Dec 1993, and they are called Inklings!  Pretty easy to make, and oh so appealing, at least to me!  




The inkle band was cut into 4-10 inch sections.


They are then sewn into a loop and turned inside out.  (I don't have any pictures from here on out of the process, because I was too excited to stop and take any!).  The folded edge is brought to the sewn edge, and then you stitch up the seams, keeping them flat.  Leaving a space open, they can be stuffed and a head can be inserted. Several people have used felted wool heads, or wooden beads with faces already imprinted, but I decided to go with small styrofoam balls inside nylons.

Though the inklings  are a bit fiddly to sew up, I really enjoyed making them, and cannot wait to give one to my Christmas-obsessed DIL!

I've also finished the Baby Surprise Jacket project, another quickie.  You re…

Next project underway!

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Just a quick post to show progress on a new (to me) and different sort of project.


I didn't create this draft; it was kindly shared on a Facebook Inkle group.  Isn't it great?  And the bands themselves weave up so quickly!  I started the actual weaving yesterday evening, by mid morning today, I had 4-10 inch bands, separated and sewn.

The elastic you see was necessary, as there were 121 ends in this draft, and that really stretched my mini inkle to its limit.  I'm still waiting for my larger inkle loom to arrive.

Next, finished objects, I hope!

Talk about lag!

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I've really let this blog slip more than I intended to.  I could blame the holidays or work, but that would only be partially true.  I've simply lost the urge to weave at present.  A big debate is raging in my mind (again) about the future of my weaving/crafting, and more and more I am leaning towards getting out of the babywearing biz.  As much as I love creating something that brings moms (and dads!) and babies together, there are aspects of that business that are becoming more difficult for me to engage in.  I've always been "behind the curve" as far as generating excitement on social media, and now there seems to be some other conversations, expectations, and "drama" (for lack of a better word) that make future prospects seem unappealing.  I still have that last piece I wove available, but for now I think that I will weave a few non-BW things and see how I feel after that.

First on the list will be a simple kitchen rug that needs to fit into an odd …

Pardon the Lag

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I realized I haven't posted in awhile, but, well, life has been even busier than usual.  At first, there were added responsibilities at work, as we are prepping for a medical records software changeover in January.  I am among many SME's, or subject matter experts, who are folks who have a fairly good grasp of using electronic medical records already in the day to day care of hospital patients.  We were to receive training in the new system early on, so that we can practice to become more comfortable with the changes and then be a resource for everyone else as they learn and after the switch.  These classes were 4 hours long, and we had 2-3 of them a week, along with our regular shifts.  This past week was the end of them except for one, which happens after Thanksgiving, and is basically how to teach people the skills necessary to document in the new system.

As soon as those classes were done, my husband got sick.  I got home from my regular shift on Thursday night and he was …

Number One Done!

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I am so happy to announce that the troublesome baby wrap will be winging its way to its new owner tomorrow morning!  I spent most free of my free time over the last two weeks hunkered over it with magnifying headgear on in order to needle weaving the repairs for over 80 threads.  Happily, once the wrap was wet finished, the repairs are pretty much invisible.


This pima cotton is so very soft, I just wanted to bury my face in there, but I refrained...



There did end up being a single mistreadle that I couldn't repair well, so I gave the customer a small discount after showing her photos (error is marked by clips).

The outer side;



and the wrong side;


Another interesting "feature" is the slight scalloping of the selvedges that seem to be common with these so-called crackle drafts.  The draft, #63044 from www.handweaving.net, isn't a true crackle but a close approximation created by a mathematician who was fascinated by weaving.  In conversing with other weavers, most if n…

The Highs and Lows

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I've been MIA for a bit because of several factors.  First and foremost, I wanted to complete the weaving portion of the Paradise Cove warp.  At last post, I was ready to start the Zephyr wool/silk weft, and I found that to be a wonderful yarn to work with.  The patterning became apparent again, but in a much subtler way than with the black tencel.  I had almost memorized the 146 pick pattern, so was happily weaving along, and then...




It became apparent that there would not be enough warp left to weave the size baby wrap that the customer wanted.  I felt horrible, having let her down.  I wove until the bitter end, but only ended up with 118.5 inches STIH off the loom, pre-wash.

I set that aside, because I had planned on finishing the wraps in the order in which they were woven, so I took the first piece, woven with tencel, and found 25 inches of multiple long floats that covered the entire width of the cloth at the end of her piece.  These floats were underneath and so, impossibl…

Peppermint Done, Now on to Zephyr!!

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Just a quick note to say that I finished baby wrap #2, 4.5m using hand dyed peppermint weft!  It's been fun, and once I had some time to spend at the loom, it worked up fairly quickly.  Yesterday I ended up weaving ~80-ish inches, including a very long bout of unweaving twice in the afternoon.


It's amazing how the actual pattern is so hard to see at times with this weft, but up close, like in the above photo on the cloth beam, the pattern becomes more apparent.

And my usual "hyperspace" shot:


The Zephyr (wool/silk) weft coming up is in the indigo colorway, so the pattern should be apparent, and I can't wait to weave with that soft silky stuff!!

Weft Dyeing

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The weaving on the Paradise Cove warp came to a screeching halt last Monday when I finished weaving the first wrap with the black tencel weft.



The next semi-custom slot holder wants hand dyed peppermint yarn for her weft, which arrived in the mail last week.  The decision was made to have the yarn speckle dyed, so I planned to do as much as I could on Wednesday, knowing  would be away the next day for a nursing conference, and then have to work today and tomorrow.

Being the way I am, I ended up completing the process all in one day, which is a lot.  I set up the table in my garage, adding plastic and bringing out the dye powders that I would use.  Mind you, the night before the temps had dropped into the 30's, and the garage is unheated, so it was very chilly out there.

The skeins had been already wound, so I put them in hot soapy water (I used Synthrapol) for about 30 minutes, then rinsed and soaked them in a soda ash solution for another 30 or so.  Then one by one I set them o…

Paradise Cove!

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Weaving has finally commenced on this, my first hand dyed warp!  I'm still waiting for more yarn to arrive, and as always, I have a busy work schedule this coming week but this morning I wound some pirns and began the adventure.

As a refresher, here is the photo that inspired this warp:



And here are the first few inches woven with a black tencel weft:


The draft is from http://www.handweaving.net/, and the draft is #63044.  The treadling sequence is 146 picks long, so I'm still using a small post-it note to keep my place.  I feel like I'm learning it bit by bit, and I'm sure I will have it memorized relatively soon, but for now, no music or podcasts, just some slow, methodical weaving.



and a bit of a close-up:


This first customer chose the black tencel to help highlight the weave structure.  The other wefts will be a speckle-dyed peppermint yarn (yes, I typed "peppermint!"), and Zephyr wool/silk in the "indigo" colorway.  I can't wait to see the …

Living Room

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Here are some quickly snapped photos of the living room after being painted.  They were taken in the middle of warping the next project onto the loom, and none of the pictures/paintings are up, but you get the idea.

First, pre-paint.  This is how the living room has looked since we bought the house many years ago.


You can see the bit of green where I got the excess paint off of the brush after painting the stairwell.

And today:




I'd love to hear people's opinions about that double entry with the brown painted trim that you can see on the right.  The dining room, which is on the other side of that entry, has all darkish brown stained trim.  This entryway is stained on the dining room side and the underside that is parallel with the floor, but the side that faces the living room is painted brown.  As I was painting the ultra white trim in the LR, I voiced that I thought we should paint over the brown paint, and leave the stained parts unchanged.  Two members of my family voted th…

Been Busy, Very Busy, But...

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I've nothing impressive to show for it.  Well, not online, anyway.  The hand dyed warp is being wound onto the back beam, and as of this moment, 9 of 16 sections are done and nicely even.  I haven't taken any pictures of the process, though why, I'm not sure.  Perhaps too busy working, both on this warp and at my nursing job - lots and lots of babies have decided that September is a great month in which to make an appearance!

Our weather, which has been so hot and humid all summer, is showing glimmers of change.  Today is blessedly cool and comfortable, starting the day in the mid 40's, now hovering in the upper 60's with a nice breeze.  I made a point to get outside, just for a short walk, because this is the weather that I long for throughout the year.  The air seems clearer, the colors more vibrant...I just love it.   Unfortunately, my walk was quite short, as my legs are feeling a bit rubbery today.  I worked non-stop 12 hours day shifts on Friday and Saturday,…

All Balled Up!

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The yarns that I dyed for the upcoming baby wrap are dried and wound into balls!  It was so much fun to see the colors emerge and run through my fingers.



Next stop is to reload them on the Square, this time using the mini-reeds and feeding them onto the sectional beam.  I can't wait, but will have to for a bit as the living room renovation is completed but still needs a light sanding and then painting.


I really want to paint the north wall before I move the loom back there.  The wall needs a good scrub before that, but hopefully I can work on that tomorrow or over the weekend.

The craft fair went off without a hitch.  We got up at 4:15 and hit the road by 5:30.  Congress St in Portland (Maine) was closed off, and there was a sea of white tents by 9 AM.  The Maine Crafts Association, which put on the show, had two city blocks, and there was an adjacent sidewalk art festival going at the same time on the next two blocks down. so four city blocks of white tents and vendors.  It was…