Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Rainbow Black Towels in Progress

The rainbow warp on the Baby Wolf has been waiting patiently while I spun more silk and plied up Mr. Debbie's polwarth wool sweater yarn (1750 yards! I'll show you that when it's been washed and dried...)

I started weaving yesterday, and I'm super-pleased with the fabric that's emerging:

The draft is called "breaks and recesses", and those little swirls will turn into little flowerets when the towels are washed. I love how the black makes the colors POP!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Handwoven Mermaids

I finished the Mermaid scarves. I am completely in love with weaving handspun silk. It feels great when it comes off the loom, but then, oh my! A hard pressing with an iron gives the silk a fantastic gleam and such a soft feel. These scarves are like butterfly wings.

I'm super-glad I have a whole bin of handdyed silk, because I'm going to spend this year spinning it up into scarf warp. :) For instance, I just finished spinning this skein of 400 yards laceweight silk, handdyed by Southern Cross Fibre:

It'll be the next warp on the Saori loom... but today, I'm finally starting the black rainbow towels!

Friday, January 25, 2013

Mermaid In Progress

The colorway of the silk I spun for this scarf is called "Mermaid Tail", and I can see why! I love the blues and subtle greens in this one. I'm using tencel for the weft, in a color called "Greyed Teal" - it really gives a watery feel to the scarf.

I'm glad I had enough silk to warp for two scarves, because I'm nearly finished weaving the first one, and I'm having too much fun to stop now!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Silk Warp

I spun this silk yarn earlier in the week, now it's wound into a warp for two silk scarves:

It's mostly blue with some mysterious green here and there. The handdyed silk fiber was called "Mermaid's Tail" and I think it's a great description. I can't wait to see how the variegation will look in the scarves!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Handwoven Chocolate

OK, so it's not as tasty as REAL chocolate, but these scarves are delicious in their own way, and calorie-free!

I used a favorite handpainted yarn - Fairy Dust yarn from Enchanted Knoll Farm, in the "Tiger Eye" colorway - comprised of superwash wool, nylon, and sparkle. I warped the Saori loom with enough length for two scarves, one shorter, one longer.

I wove the first shorter one with a caramel brown bamboo, hemstitched it and twisted the fringe. It's 5.5" x 45" with 3.5" fringe on each end. I call it "Chocolate Caramel":

The second longer scarf I wove with a spice tencel, hemstitched it and twisted the fringe. It's 5.5 x 72" with 3.5" fringe on each end. I call it "Spicy Chocolate":

I'm really pleased with the look and feel of both scarves. I hope you can see the sparkle - I took a zillion pictures trying to capture it. I'm glad I have more of this lovely yarn in my stash!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Handwoven Handspun Silk Amethyst Scarf

I spun this purple silk yarn last year, and it's been marinating in my stash waiting for its moment.

This week, I warped it on my Saori loom. I wove it with a tencel yarn in 'eggplant'.

I am so pleased with the way it turned out!

Handwoven Handspun Amethyst Silk Scarf

Handwoven Handspun Amethyst Silk Scarf

Handwoven Handspun Amethyst Silk Scarf

I'm pulling out my stash of silk fiber this afternoon - I see a lot more handspun silk scarves in my future!

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Black Rainbow Towel Warp in progress

I'm winding a warp today for a new set of dishtowels, in a "breaks and recesses" pattern (from Strickler). I'm using 10/2 cotton, setting it at 24 ends per inch. Here's my design plan:

And here's the warp in progress on my warping mill:

Rainbow Warp in progress

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

SAORI Carnival Scarves

Here are a couple of Saori scarves I wove this past weekend - they're just perfect for our Mardi Gras carnival celebrations here in New Orleans.

I warped 5.5 yards for two scarves using 10/2 and 6/2 cotton, rayon boucle, cotton boucle, and novelty monster yarn from outer space. I wove one with a purple 6/2 cotton and the other with a periwinkle 6/2 cotton. I love how they turned out - they're light, with lots of drape, yet warm. They can be gathered or spread - either way, there's loads of color and texture. Each scarf is 70" long, 7" wide, with 7" of knotted fringe on each end.

First the purple:

And the periwinkle:

These were a lot of fun to weave, and they'll be a lot of fun for someone to wear!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Mile 1, and Huck Rainbow Stripes Towels

I started off my walking program, and added a little widget in the sidebar to keep track of miles walked this year. My goal is 365 - one for every day (though I know sometimes I'll miss a day, and some of my walks will be more than a mile). Today's mile was on the treadmill, since it's gloomy and has been threatening rain all day. Still, yay mile!

Got my thick 'n' thirsty Huck Rainbow Stripes towels handhemmed and ready for the shop. I'm super-pleased with the thickness of these towels - they'll be nice for handtowels in the bath as well as in the kitchen. The 6/2 cotton washed up nice and squishy. 24" x 16" each. I gave one as a Christmas gift and have 8 left.

Handwoven Huck Rainbow Stripes Towels

Handwoven Huck Rainbow Stripes Towels

I was thinking about buying a corkboard bulletin board for Goal #4 (setting up a planning board for upcoming weaving projects) but then I thought, "Why buy something, when I could make something from what I've already got around the house?" I have some thick cardboard and some older wrapping paper that's not in good enough shape to use for packages. I'll put together a cute board, hang it on the wall, add some pushpins, and Bob's your Uncle. Free planning board!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013


Happy New Year! I'm excited for the things this new year will bring - the learning opportunities, the creativity, the possibilities.

How about some Goals?

1. Go for a walk every day and soak up some fresh air and sunshine. I'm registering for the Crescent City Classic 10K (March 30), and I'd like to finish with a spring in my step - daily walking will help.

2. Learn new weave structures, and do some designing.

3. Continue to cultivate a simpler life, by decluttering (PURGE!) and choosing simplicity over complexity.

4. Set up a planning board for upcoming weaving and spinning projects.

5. Incorporate more fresh seasonal foods into our usual grocery fare.

6. Devise and implement a more efficient yarn storage solution in the studio.

7. Find an additional market for my handspun and handwovens - Etsy sales have slowed dramatically.

8. Teach my daughter to weave - she's expressed interest, and I want to encourage it.

9. Read more - I've challenged myself to read one book a week plus 13 (for the year date) for a total of 65 books. See my Goodreads page for my progress - link in the sidebar.

10. Weave some Saori yardage for clothing - I want a few comfortable cotton shirts, a vest or two, and several jumpers - things I can mix/match and wear with jeans.

11. Spend more time with my siblings - the time I've spent with them over the holidays was precious, and I want to make the time for that at least once a month.

12. Manage my music better on my computer and phone. I'd like to organize it into playlists and get rid of stuff I don't ever listen to. Songs that I skip every time you come up in the shuffle, I'm looking at you...

13. Get used to my Mavea water filter pitcher. I dislike our tap water, so I drink bottled water (delivered by 5-gallon bottles). I've bought a water pitcher, but didn't like the water as much. I want to try it again and get used to it - it's cheaper and has less impact on the environment.

There! 13 Goals for 2013. I'll keep them in mind and revisit them as the year progresses - I think pursuing them will bring me great benefits.

I pray that the new year will bring you love and health and joy. Thanks for reading my little musings here - I enjoy sharing what's going on my studio and my heart. Here's to 2013 and its opportunities!!