This is a fun one. I direct warped my Baby Wolf with a bunch of leftover skeins of worsted weight yarns out of my stash bins. Direct warping is how one warps a rigid heddle loom, not usually how one warps a multi-shafted loom. The warp is measured from the back beam through the raddle on top of the shafts, to a peg on the bookcase (not pictured), then cranked on smoothly using friction provided by the guides in the warp helpers on the back beam. Next the yarn is threaded in a bird’s eye point twill pattern from Dixon, and then sleyed at 1 end per dent in a 10 reed, this is full width on this loom. I lashed on but didn’t take any pictures of that. I am using all three of the patterns that go with this tie-up on page 72 like a random sampler. If I was actually planning the warp instead of just running up and down the stairs grabbing skeins of yarn I’d have put the greens in the center and made the colors symmetrical but I like how quickly this weaves up, the hand of the fabric and how the twill looks. It’s a fun break from the finer thread projects on the Millbruck and I can’t wait to see it finished.
I finished all the earth-toned warps and still in keeping with using up stashed yarns, went shopping in the bins in the laundry room for both of these projects. On the Flip, we have a wide scarf in “Shawl in a ball” in Healing Teal, and on the big Jack, a rug from black carpet warp with Lion Brand Homespun Thick & Quick in the Lakeside Stripes colorway. It looks like the water in one of Monet’s water lilies paintings. As much as I love the look of the earthy, “Imagine” warp, I don’t know if I’ll do that again. It was a tough project to weave.
I like both these projects, so that makes it fun work. I’ve got the big loom working better than it was before, I rotated the hooks on shaft four and fiddled with the brake on the warp beam, and he/she seems happier too. You can see from the pic of the warping board that this is a short one, it’s just 105″ long. It is 28″ wide, and I planned it, with some shrinkage, to work as a runner or on a yoga mat as an extra cushion. We’ll see how that goes. So far the most dramatic result of the experiment has been the pain. Yes, either because of using the warping board on the couch and/or then thinking that since it was a short warp, I could get it on in a day, I have done something awful to my back and have had pain all through my hip to my foot. So that has kept me on naproxen, some Chinese salve I found in a drawer, and a heating pad for the last two days and is limiting me to work on the Flip loom. Don’t worry, I have a plan for next time. I’ll either use the reel or properly hang the warping board. I just wanted to try an idea I had about using the Homespun.
I keep sharing pictures to Instagram and forgetting to put them here! Here is a bit of what I’ve been up to! The runner is wool sock yarn warp and various wools, acrylic, rayon and lurex wefts. The rosepath scarf is cotton warp with cotton weft. I’ll show a pic of it finished once it is pressed.
Michelle Baggerman, I swear I did not make that name up, says that the commonly used method of recycling plastic bags requires more chemicals and produces toxic emissions so she developed her own. She demonstrated how she first used a drop spindle and then a spinning wheel to make the plastic into a form of fiber that can be used for attractive textiles. Watch the video to see what she has created and the impact her idea has had on sustainable industry in one small area. The links below are her company websites and blog.
I’ve been away but I have a very good excuse, I’ve been moving. Not moving far, just moving upstairs. One thing we’ve learned having a small house and living in it for over 20 years now is that we keep re-purposing rooms. It is how we avoid outgrowing the house I guess. This move started when Nathan’s mom, Eileen, asked if I would like to have her loom. She and her husband are selling their house and downsizing. I’ve turned down loom-offers before but this time as soon as Scott texted me her offer I had the feeling this was a loom I wanted. Now squeezing another loom, especially another, bigger floor loom into the studio downstairs means getting rid of the desk, the couch or possibly the bathroom…
I’ve thought about changing the living room around for a long time and almost bought a couch the other month but I just couldn’t do it and I finally figured out it was because I was trying to figure out a way to fit a loom upstairs. I haven’t been weaving much recently and that keeps me from being as happy as I could be and it’s because I don’t have much time to spend downstairs in the studio during the day and not enough light in the evening. However I do have time to weave a little every day if I had a loom more conveniently located upstairs where I work all day. Meanwhile Scott is insulating the den with stacks of cigar boxes and has two friends coming to kick me out of the studio over the Summer so when I suggested moving my stuff out and giving him the studio he jumped at the opportunity.
We drove the truck over to Port Gamble on Saturday to meet the loom. We disassembled it and I took the small pictures to be able to put it together again when we got home. The big side pieces just fit into the Tacoma with blankets between them and the center jack or shed-lifting mechanism is one piece that actually lifts out of the frame. It is elegantly designed with sliding wood slats in dowel frames that require minimal hardware. The larger picture is reassembled that evening in the living room. Isn’t the light great? It went back together easily. I still have a lot to do moving the rest of my yarn and jewelry-making supplies out of the studio and moving the rest of Scott’s cigar boxes downstairs but I could not be more grateful!