If I taught a workshop/seminars at ANWG '19 would you be interested?

Saturday, October 21, 2017

Form/Function



Yesterday I had the pleasure of addressing a group of weavers, talking about lace weaves.  As part of that I talked anout my 'messy' train of thought as I build a cloth, and that I am primarily a form follows function weaver. 

After the presentation one weaver came up to say that she worked for a group of engineers and that they were always saying "form/function, form/function".  

She said she now understood how that applied to weaving. 

Be still my heart.  ;)



Wednesday, October 18, 2017

TN Interlude


This trip has been a lovely Interlude before the craft fair season begins with a bang in, oh, 10 days?   Really it begins pretty much the minute I step foot back in my house next Monday evening.  Then it is four weeks of scramble, plus a slew of appointments stuck in between trying to pack, set up, make nice, hope to sell enough to pay off my debt and have some left over to get me through the winter.  

The downside of easing back on the teaching is...less income.  

So, once the sales are over I will need to stare that manuscript down and get it finished.  I'm still a minimum of six months away from completion of the manuscript, plus all the rest of what needs to happen to it after that.  Bottom line?   A bunch more money going out before it will (hopefully) bring some money in. 

And the cycle takes another turn...

Monday, October 16, 2017

Asking Why


Sometimes I do things just because I want to know what happens if I do this?  Or if I change this, how will it affect that?

Over the past while I have been working with a spinner and looking at things like twist energy.  Today we wet finished the three scarves I wove with handspun singles.  And the corners of this scarf curled.  We have had a good chin wag about how the yarns were the same and how they are different. We have come to a conclusion.  We are pretty confident in why it happened but more experimentation will be required to prove or disprove our evaluation.  In the meantime, it was an interesting exercise.  Proving once again that you never stop learning if you just keep asking "what if?"

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Fellowship


There is nothing like finding kindred spirits, even though hundreds (thousands) of miles may separate us.  Every once in a while we gather, to share hopes, dreams, highs, lows.  

Today we visited Ann Marie's new studio and put our stamp of approval on it.  

Tomorrow we separate further, although Mary and I have a few more days together.  We will finalize a joint project and hopefully wrap up what we have done to this point.  And then I begin my slow journey home with a stop in the Pacific Northwest to help ease me back into fall weather.  Because today home had first snowfall and I am spoiled for winter after spending time in Tennessee.  But soon it will be time to enter back into the fray of the craft fair season before the descent into full winter.  

And the cycle begins again...

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Culmination


I'm at the fun bit of weaving - sitting at the loom, contentedly weaving away, piling up the yards/meters.  Thinking.  Because when everything is going well and you only need surface attention for the task at hand, the mind can go wandering.

This morning I was thinking about how cyclic in nature being a professional weaver is.  My year end is not Dec. 31 but oh, around now.  The craft fair season begins very shortly and if I haven't got it ready for sale by now?  It probably isn't going to be ready for this year.  So what I am actually doing is working on inventory for next year.  

I am also stash busting - to a certain extent.  While the weft I'm currently using is 'new' - as in purchased in Sweden at Va:v last month, the warp yarns have been in my stash for considerably longer.  

This summer I did not have my usual 'birthday' sale so I am thinking of getting new items loaded to my Circle Craft shop as soon as I get home from the Circle Craft Christmas Market, mid-November.  Maybe by then these towels will be finished.  Or very soon after I get home.  My 'shop' is currently closed due to my travel schedule, but I haven't forgotten about it.

There are a whole bunch of things that have had to be put on the back burner, but I have not forgotten about them.  Number one is, of course, The Book.  I got the last set of edits in June but have just not had the time - or energy - to deal with them.  Again, hopefully after the craft fair season.  Doing the new edits can actually be - not relaxing, exactly - but a different kind of activity, one particularly suited to winter.

Plus the perennial conversation about all things weaving, generally process related, goes around again.  So finishing The Book seems particularly important, if only to give people more information than is generally available.  If you don't know what you don't know, you don't know that you need to know it.  My hope is to fill in some of those cracks in people's fundamental knowledge so that they can make appropriate choices.

As for the web on the loom, yes there are reed marks.  No they may not come out 'in the wash' (wet finishing) but they are consistent and therefore part of the character of the cloth.  I'm good with it either way.

And yes, that's a three thread float on the selvedge.  And no, it doesn't bother me.  It's fine.  And no, I don't use a floating selvedge.  See my other blog posts on Selvedges.  Whole lot more to good selvedges than using a floating selvedge.  Or an end feed shuttle.  Etc.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

It's Own Time


I have visited the province of Dalarna, Sweden several times and as such have also visited a number of glassworks and gotten to know a little bit about glass as a material.  One of the phrases heard about glass is that it 'has it's own time'.  In other words, the glass worker must tease it into the final shape by understanding how the molten glass behaves and when it is appropriate to shape it.

So too, I think, does linen have it's own 'time'.  Or at the very least, it's own humidity in order for it to behave nicely.

I bought some singles 16 at Va:v and this morning I started winding bobbins to place in a humidor.  I live in a much dryer climate than linen really appreciates, so it is important to allow the fibre to take up moisture so that it co-operates in the shuttle.

Yesterday I got the 2/16 cotton warp threaded and later today I'll sley and tie up and hopefully begin weaving.  I ought to have started winding bobbins yesterday so that they would have a good 24 hours to take up moisture, but I was distracted with other things and didn't remember the linen really needs a little coddling in terms of humidity.  Hopefully it will behave for me when I get started weaving.

I only filled one humidor this morning but that should be plenty to start weaving.  I'll wind more later today and fill the other two humidors I made with a couple of plastic tubs and a lid.  When everything is going well, I can go through quite a few bobbins in a day so I want to make sure I have them ready - and willing - to go.


Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Bumps


Life is full of bumps, lumps, twists and turns.  

The last couple of warps that I put onto the AVL I had some errors that required fixing and this time I decided I needed something that would be simpler to set up.  It's also something that many people find attractive - a twill block version of the traditional Snail's Trails and Cat's Paws design.

I have some of this design on hand but they are 'neutral' colours.  The linen I brought home from Sweden is a lovely rich somewhat 'off' blue, not dark dark, but deeper than what I would consider a medium value.  As such I thought it would go nicely on this warp made up of greyed blues and greens in a medium value with a few darker blues, almost identical to the linen, to make up 32 spools for sectional beaming.

I have just now finished threading and rather than continue I need to do some administrivia - both sales taxes are due.  I don't owe anything on either of them but the paperwork has to be filed and I'd rather do it now before I leave on my next trip.  Because when I get home I will have to hit the ground running, as they say.  My schedule is gearing up towards the craft fair season and I have three back to back, each one longer than the next (2 days, then 3 days, then 5 days) with a 450 mile trip each way for the last.  Circle Craft is the last show of the season and is pretty exhausting, coming at the end of my shows.  Well, the guild does a small show but that is in December and only two days, in the guild room.  Usually a time when I can spin or knit or putter.  I am also hoping I can update my shop at the Circle Craft website for a 'sale' - just in time for Christmas?

With this warp I wound up with no 'extra' threads which gives me hope that I actually managed to follow my threading draft and not make any mistakes.  We'll see!