Happy Halloween

Last FO (finished object) of the month.  I was surprised I was able to get this done.  Here’s the first of the scarves for E.

I used Valley Yarns 2/10 Merino Tencel (Colrain Lace) from Webs, set at 16 epi.  The draft is from The Handweaver’s Pattern Directory on page 50, top left corner.

Being as I had the Harrisville all fixed up, I used it to weave the scarf.  I wanted to test it out, see how well my fixes actually worked.  That was how I found out that the ratchet on the back beam was put on backwards.  This made for very slow going weaving because the back brake kept slipping, causing the beam to roll and tension to be lost.  If I had used the Gilmore, I’d probably have had this done in a day.  I wound the warp on Wednesday night, got it on the loom (using f2b) and wove a little over 3 feet on Thursday, and finished weaving and twisted fringe on Friday.

Normally, I pick my work to death, finding every little flaw.  I’m happy to say, you’re not going to see any picking with this one.  I think it’s my favorite FO to date!  There are a few more pics on my Flickr page if you’d like to see them.

Dear Time, please slow down

Things are going so fast in my head that I don’t really know where to start.  I went to Small Town to visit daughters and grandsons this past weekend.  Daughters both picked out things they’d like to have made.  Daughter E is coming to stay with us this weekend and part of next week and I’d like to get her two things made before she leaves.  I’d also like to get Daughter K’s things made so E could take them back with her on the plane, but it just ain’t gonna happen.  So much to do, so little time.  If I wasn’t working, it would be so much easier.  Of course, trying to get caught up on blogs and emails isn’t helping either.

I made the spare bedroom a loom room, because we hardly have anyone spend the night.  I now have to get all my weaving crap out of the loom room and the bed back in there so E will have some place to sleep.

This weekend is WeFF, which I was going to possibly help out with, but that ain’t happening either.  Spending time with E is more important.  I’ll still stop by there, though I won’t be spending as much time there as I have previous years and I definitely won’t be helping out.  That’s probably going to put me on a shitlist with someone.

I’ve got one warp wound and hope to have it on the loom today.  I’d also like to have at least part of it woven but it takes me forever to get a warp on the loom so I won’t be surprised if I don’t get that far.

Pictures of the stash enhancements and FO’s next week.

Sometimes I’m an airhead

Remember the 22″ Harrisville 4s/4t I picked up a couple of weeks ago?  I finally got off my duff and started to work on making it usable.  It was missing a brake cable, harness cables, and a crank.  After I got it home, I realized the beater bar was out of kilter.

I added harness cables.  Don’t knock them, a girl uses what she has on hand.

After putting on a new brake cable (you’ll see that in a minute), I went about figuring out why the beater bar was only touching the castle on one side.  On the other side, it was a couple of centimeters away.  My first thought was that the wood for the beater bar was warped.  I layed the beater bar on the floor, no warping.  I put the beater bar back on the loom and looked for other causes.  Finally, I found it.  The piece of wood on the left that has the bolts that the bar sits on was different than the wood on the right.  The one on the left didn’t come all the way to the edge of the front frame, the one on the right did.  The bolt hole on the back was further away from the end than the bolt hole on the front.  I was a tad irritated, someone drilled the holes wrong.  How would I decide which bar I wanted to drill new holes in?  Which one would set the beater bar in the right place?  How would I handle the bolts the beater bar swivels on since they don’t come out of the other side of the wood?  I thought about this for a good 5 minutes.  Then it hit me.  The bar was put on backwards, or upside down, depending on how you look at it.  I didn’t have to drill any holes, I just had to flip the bar front to back.

Here’s the bar view from outside the frame.

Here’s the view from the inside of the frame.

This is actually the right side bar, which looks the same as the left.  The front of the bar was to the back on the left side.  With the bolt hole closer to the end, the bar didn’t go all the way to the edge of the frame.  With the bar turned around, the swivel points weren’t at the same place on each side, which is why it was only hitting one side of the castle.  Once I flipped the bar around, the beater bar is hitting the castle perfectly.  And there’s the brake cord I mentioned earlier 🙂

For now, I think I’m going to keep this as my workshop loom and put the table loom plans on hold.  I only paid $50 for this loom, which is a lot cheaper than the table looms I was looking at.  The only thing is, is that this will be a bear to haul around.  I’m thinking about putting some wheels on it so I could tip it and roll it along.

What do you think?  Purple wheels?  I wish 🙂

I bought it from a guild that it was donated to so I didn’t get to ask the previous owner any questions, and now I wonder.. did the previous owner abandon this loom because he/she thought the loom was warped?  (I mean, warped in a bad way. Ha!)  All it took was a little time and effort and this loom is now in working condition.  It might not have the “real” parts (brake cable, harness cable, etc) but it works and that’s what matters.

I still need to get a crank substitute, which I have some leads on.

Has anyone seen my mind

On the loom, rayon chenille:

I’ll get a better picture once it’s off the loom.  I hope.  Once again, I’m reminded how much I don’t like alternating 2 shuttles.  It takes so much longer to pick up a shuttle, throw it, put it down, pick up the other shuttle, throw it, put it down, than it does to pick up a shuttle, throw it throw it throw it.  I stopped weaving 3 inches short because I was just plain tired of it.   I still have enough warp on for another scarf, where I’ll only be using 1 color for the weft, and it will go much faster.

Yesterday was the Ventura County Handweavers & Spinners Open House.  (Scroll down if you want to skip my blathering and see the yarn I bought.) This is the 3rd one I’ve gone to.  One would think that you could go, spend a half hour or so browsing, then be on your way home.  Not me.  First thing I did was see Elisa and spent a few minutes resisting her trying to talk me into a spinning wheel.  Evil spinners, always trying to lure us poor unsuspecting souls into their evil spinning lairs.  I walked around the vendor booths.  Then walked around the booths again.  Oh my gosh, you guys, I could stand in the RedFish DyeWorks booth for hours.  I practically did.  I stared at the 60/2 silk in all it’s beauty.  I stood on one foot, then the other, and drove the poor vendor crazy asking questions.  How many ends per inch?  How many skeins for a scarf?  And I didn’t do this just once.  I stopped at that booth 3 times while I was there.  I wrote down some colors that I liked, then told them I would see what kind of plan I could come up with, and order online.  After I left the open house, not a mile down the road, I realized I should have taken a picture of that booth.  I thought about going back.  A little farther down the road, still thinking of all those lovely yarns, I realized that hey, I had just bought a book at Village Spinning & Weaving’s booth, and it likely had something in it that would give me some ideas for the silk.  So I took the next exit, pulled into a parking lot, and looked through the book (Twill Thrills).  I found something I liked, and headed back to the open house, where I proceeded to buy 60/2 silk.  60/2!  The draft I’m going to use says to use it at 48 ends per inch.  48!  Has anyone seen my mind, because I seem to have lost it. At least I stayed away from the 120/2 silk.  And I still forgot to take a picture of the booth.

Yarns added to the stash.  I have actual plans for some of it, but not all:

And the winner is….


Thank you, everyone, for entering.  I wish I could give one to each person who commented.  Maybe when I win the lottery.

The next time I do a contest, I’m not making the end date so far out.  I wanted to give people time to enter but it was hard for ME to wait that long!

Edit to add:  John left a comment to this post.  Make sure you read it 🙂

Sheep herding

On Sunday, hubby and I went to the Ventura County Fairgrounds to see the Highland Games.  This isn’t something I’d normally go to,but a cousin’s husband was playing in the bagpipe competitions so we went to show our support.  I’ve never seen so many men in one spot wearing plaid skirts before so it was quite interesting.  The most interesting thing for me, though,  was seeing the Border Collies herding sheep.  I could have stood there all day.  If the dog wasn’t herding, sometimes the sheep just stood there as if to say “Well?  What now?”  It was so neat to see the dogs do their thing.

They told us that this is something the dogs are born with, they aren’t really trained to herd.  They brought out a 9 week old puppy and put him near the sheep.  He was more interested in chasing the bigger dog, and at one point showed the person in the ring that he could hold on to her pant leg pretty well 🙂  Seeing all of them made me want a Border Collie.  They’re gorgeous dogs and the way they worked was so neat.  However, with the warning that “If you don’t give a Border Collie a job, then they’ll make one”, I think we’re better off sticking with just the one dog we have.  She tries to herd the cats enough as it is.

CNCH Conference

Anyone planning on going to the CNCH Conference in April?  I think hubby and I are going to make a trip out of it.  I’ve picked out the classes I want to take, each on a different day, of course.  In the evenings, we’ll do some sightseeing touristy stuff.  I’ve been wanting to visit the Winchester House since I first heard about it several years ago and it’s close enough that I’m hoping we’ll get to go there.  Anyway, I’m not planning on going to the banquet.  I’m going to see if I can give my spot to someone else so if you’re going and need the extra ticket, I might have one.

Anything else anyone recommends seeing or doing while we’re there?  Restaurant recommendations are welcome too.

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