Thursday, September 15, 2016

Around the studio

I wish you could smell these flowers! We have them growing in a couple of places. This time of year they smell wonderful! They are a fall blooming clematis.

Another thing I tried growing again this year is cotton. I don't have a lot of plants and these are growing in a large pot on our deck. This is what I found this week.

The Lervad #2 has been empty for a couple of years and long past due for a warp.  It is the prettiest loom I have ever seen! I decided to put on a warp for a couple of walker bags. I have since woven it off but I didn't take a picture of the finished product. Here are pictures of the loom.

Isn't it pretty? It has ties to the Hull House in Chicago. I am not sure how old it is but it is old. It was made by Anders Lervad. When I first saw the ad for this loom many years ago I thought it was too narrow but that night I couldn't stop thinking about it. I wonder how many are still around. There are some that are black with beautiful carving on it but this one does not have carving. I wish it did.

Well that is all I have for now. Until next time.


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Finnian goes on a field trip!

Several of the Tuesday Weavers { loomy tunes blog} have asked me about my two new cashmere goats so yesterday I decided they needed to see one in person. Finnian was acting shy even though he is very friendly and likes people. When people first came up to him he turned his head around and lied it on my chest! Silly goat!

When we got back home my husband met me on the porch and asked me if Finnian would like to visit and elderly woman we know. Sure! So we got back in the van and headed there. They both enjoyed the visit. Hmmm, maybe Finnian has a future in visiting places like nursing homes etc.

I have been weaving several scarves. I used the book The Weaver's Idea Book by Jane Patrick. I have been wanting to try out some of her patterns. This one is on page 25, #8 It has a different look on each side. I really like how this one turned out!

Another thing I tried was a sample using a variegated singles wool yarn as warp and weft on the rigid heddle loom. I thought if I used it on this loom that it would be gentler on the warp. Even though this yarn is very nice I would never use it as warp again. It was loosely spun and was almost like very thin roving. I found on the outside warp threads that it shreaded. I spent more time trying to fix the problem than I was weaving it. The unexpected thing was that it puckered when taken off the loom making a very interesting pattern in the sample. I think it would make a very nice scarf if it wasn't so difficult to weave with. The next sample I used lesser tension but I still didn't like weaving with it. The puckers were not as noticable on that one.

What do you think of it? Can you see the puckers? It is a nice effect!

Until next time.


Monday, July 25, 2016

Drama on the farm

For one week my herd queen Ginger harrassed Finnian. He was one miserable goat. I made the decision to buy another cashmere goat from Mountain Hollow Farm. Meet Seamus,

It almost looks like he is smiling! He was chewing his cud. He is only one year old. Even though they were from the same farm he and Finnian had never met. The minute Finnian saw Seamus he cried sounds of joy. He was so happy to see another goat that looked like him! It didn't take long for them to be best friends. Every time Finnian lost sight of Seamus he would cry. Seamus would go up to him and put his head on Finnian's head. It was so cute to watch!

These were handled when young and are the sweetest goats! They like to come up to me for some petting and head scratching. I am really enjoying having them on the farm and I am really looking forward to seeing what wool they give me in the spring.

Until next time,


Monday, June 27, 2016

It's show time!

As some of my followers already know getting ready for a show is a lot of work. After all the weaving is done there are fringes to twist, washing of some items, measuring, tagging, pricing and boxing up. Then all the boxes and display items have to be loaded into the van, unloaded and carted into the show. After that, reboxing, loading and putting away what did not sell back to the studio. Hopefully I will take home a lot less than I took. Then there is the book keeping.

I like to demonstrate weaving while in my booth. It can really help the day pass by especially when the shoppers are less and the show is not over yet. People only get to see the weaving. They don't know all the preparation work that is involved before the weaving can begin. Some think items are too expensive while others appreciate all that goes into each item.

My favorite part of sitting in my booth is meeting people. I frequently hear comments like, "I did that in college" or "I did that a long time ago but then I had children. I wish I could get back into it." I always tell them about the Appalachian Arts and Craft Center and about Carol who gives lessons. Hopefully she will have more new students.

Here is a picture of my partially loaded van.

I have been breeding Nigora goats for a few years now. My goal is to get only goats who can be combed and produce cashmere wool. For the last year I have been thinking about getting a true cashmere goat from Mountain Hollow Farm in Tazewell, Tn. She sells black ones and silver ones. Recently I saw, on facebook, a picture of a goat kid with the caption, life is short. Buy the goat! So I did! He is adorable and has such a sweet disposition! Here is a picture of him before I brought him home.

Isn't he cute? The other goats don't think much of him but hopefully that will change soon.                                                                                                                                                 

Until next time,

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

So busy!

I can't even to begin to tell you what I have been doing this past month. It is a blur. Traveling, graduations, weaving, buying furniture, inheriting furniture, arranging furniture and rearranging that same furniture. Now we are remodeling the kitchen. We have been to several stores to see what the options are. So many choices and possibilities. We are at the point that our brains have turned to mush!

I did get another batch of rugs woven and hemmed. They are lying on a table next to some scarves waiting for final examination and tags. My first show of the year is in ten days. I really need to get busy! Here are a few pictures.

The lighting was not the best when I took these pictures but you can get an idea of what I have been doing.

Until next time.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Where I have been

Recently I was able to visit one of my favorite places, Colonial Williamsburg. This visit I wanted to see what the weavers were up to since they moved into another building. I saw two looms there. One was a reproduction loom of the 1600's and the other a reproduction of the 1700's. The last time I visited I was told they were only allowed to weave plain weave. This time there was twill and a huck lace on the looms.

These are some random pictures.

If you love history this is definately the place to visit.

Until next time.


Thursday, March 31, 2016

In transition

This is my Marigold one year ago. She and her sister were born here to Ginger. For those who may remember I raise Nigora goats for their wool. Marigold is the one close to her mother.

This is Marigold after being combed a year later. I have to say, she did not like being combed one bit! I was able to get a lot of her wonderful wool to spin into yarn.

As you can see she is still a lovely red underneath. Too bad the wool I combed wasn't the same color. Her wool fades to an off while like her mother.

This is Ginger and Daisy. As you can see they have a way to go as far as combing goes.

Ginger is a cross between an Angora goat and a Nigerian Dwarf goat. She is considered an F1 Nigora. I bred Ginger with an F2 Nigora and Daisy and Marigold are the result. I was curious as to what their wool would look like. They are very different from each other. Marigold's wool is like her mother's but Daisy's wool is shorter, straighter and very light and wispy. I am looking forward to spinning her wool to see what it is like. If you look on the left you can catch a bit of Max, my
Great Pyrennes guarding his flock.

Raising goats is fun! They each have their own personalities. My three are sweet and like to have their heads scratched. The nice thing about this breed is that they are small and I don't have to have a big farm to raise them on.

Until next time.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

My new toy

For some time now I have been wondering how I can speed up my dish towel production. I heard a friend of mine say recently that she had an electric spool winder. She let me take a look at hers and I decided that it was just what I needed to speed up my production. I looked on line and saw they can be pretty pricey. On to Ebay and etsy. I found a man who sells on both for a good price so I bought one.

It takes a bit of getting used to. So far I have wound three spools now just 27 more to go!


Wednesday, March 23, 2016

All done

While I was weaving the Elegant Placemats I wondered if this yarn would hold up as fringe. I suspected it wouldn't. So after weaving one placemat I decided to weave off the rest as a table runner with a hem. Last night it came off the loom. I washed it on the gentle cycle and air dryed it. Just as I suspected. The fringe looked terrible. It will get hemmed and ironed and look great on my table. I really like using this weave structure and I know I will be using it again.

A couple of years ago my husband suggested I have some inexpensive items for sale in my booth so I started weaving mug rugs. Many people have bought them including children who like them for their doll houses. My supply has gotten low so this week I am weaving up more. I didn't take any pictures of those.

People have asked me why I weave. Hmmm, I had to think about that.
The short answer is that I really enjoy it! I can't imagine me not weaving. It is relaxing and challenges my mind when figuring out a new weave structure. I have gotten to meet some well known weavers over the years and attended a few classes. Currently I am a member of the Appalachian Arts Craft Center. The weavers meet on Tuesdays and weave things for the shop. It is so nice to be with like minded people. They are a fun and happy group and being there makes all my problems disappear for a while. If you are ever in the area stop by! The center is located in Norris, Tn. and we are there from ten am to two pm.


Saturday, March 12, 2016


I like to weave colorful things and use yarn with texture. A bit of sparkle is an added plus. Recently I decided some neutral placemats might be nice to offer in my booth at shows. I chose a huck lace draft using 3/2 cotton. They are called Elegant Placemats. I got the pattern from a free download from Handwoven Magazine. When I started the first one I wondered if the lack of color would bore me. Not at all. I like watching the pattern emerge as I go along and once I get into a rhythm they weave up quickly.

The weather here has been nice even though it has been very cloudy. It makes me want to get outside and plant things! Today I transplanted a rose tree. I am hoping it will bloom in the new sunnier location. While walking around the studio yard I saw a tulip in the middle of the lawn! it got transplanted too. In a way it is hard for me to decide where to be. Inside weaving or outside planting things and tidying up the yard. But the reality of it is this nice spring like weather won't last long. One day I will wake up and it will be summer. We have already turned on the air conditioning because it is so humid. That is the wavy of it here in the south. One day we can have spring like temperatures and the next day hot. So enjoy the nice weather for however long it lasts. Weaving can wait. Well, for a little while anyway.

Monday, March 7, 2016

i am here again

Well, I figured out how to use the tablet, kind of, and I now have internet at home so here goes. I had thought of giving up on the blog but then I thought I would give it one more try.

One year ago two little does were born here on a cold 27 degree day. We had rain, snow and sleet. In a break in the weather my doe gave birth to two cute Nigoras.

The red one I named Marigold and the white one Daisy.

Here they are one year later.
Mom is in the back. Aren't they sweet? I am hoping they shed like their mother and I won't have to shear.

I have been weaving rugs this winter. Here are six I took off the loom recently.I used a very thick yarn for weft for all except the one in the far back. For that I used nylon strips from Great Northern Weaving. Now I need to machine hem them and I will be done.

Until next time.