Monday, August 30, 2010

Oh... the life!

We all need to take some pointers from Monster (the cat)

Anytime you find  yourself in a tight spot. Relax and make the most of it.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

My first try at plying yarn

I started using the drop spindle in December or January. I used mohair from my angora goats. One was Abby, she is a light brown color, and the other was Ziva, she is black but her fiber is more dark grey. Once I was finished spinning the fiber on my drop spindle I had to figure out how to store what I made. Being the 'thrifty' (I like that better than 'cheap') person that I am I used empty toilet paper rolls to put my finished single onto. So I had these two 'spools' of mohair singles I had no idea what I was going to do with. So they sat in a box for months. And then I decided I wanted to make a plied yarn with them. So still being the 'thrifty' person I had to figure out a way for the singles to come off of their 'spools' smoothly and without getting tangled. I came up with this:
It is amazing what you can do with butter knives and a small card board box!!
So I started plying, I have a little book that I learned to use the drop spindle with and it had a small section on plying.
The biggest problem I had was I had made my yarn pretty chunky (or thick) so when I plied them together the resulting yarn was pretty thick and I had a hard time keeping the yarn secure on the spindle. But in the end I got it done.
I don't know if I did it the correct way or even if the resulting yarn is usable for anything, but boy was it incredibly satisfying to see it done!
So the next step was to get the plied yarn off of my spindle so I can spin something else. And we are back to 'thirtiness'. Using the same cardboard box, I put the drop spindle in it so it would turn freely while I removed the yarn.
And then the final product! Well there is still a matter of washing it to set the twist, but I have not done that yet. It is going to be hard to take it off the chair. Not because it is on there tight  or anything like that, it will be hard to take it off because I just LOVE walking by it and rubbing my hands all over it! It is so soft!!!
It ended up making only 23 yards of yarn, so I really don't know what I am going to do with it. I have a couple of ideas in my head but you'll have to wait and see if decide to anything but 'pet' it. :)

Have a wonderful evening! And if you have any ideas of what I can with 23 yards let me know.

Friday, August 6, 2010

New to me loom

I was very lucking a couple of weeks ago. I was checking Craig's list for a loom and came across one that was being offered for FREE! They had pictures of it and it was in pieces and looked pretty rough. But I sent him an e-mail asking if he still had it. He replied that someone was coming to look at it. Darn it. I told him if they decided not to take it I would definitely take it sight unseen. I figured even if it was not all there we would be well on our way to making one that works. So after several days, and me thinking the other people took it, I recieved another e-mail from him saying the people where a no show and if I was still interested in it. Silly question! Of course I was interested in it!

So last Sunday we went and picked it up. It came out of the Kansas City Museum. It had no documentation with it and nowhere on it does it have any name or symbol. But it was all mine!! I had no idea how to put it together or even if it was all there. But once we got it home and started looking at it, it was really fairly simple to put together.

So now I have a nice heavy duty 4 harness loom that I can make my rugs with! This is wonderful!!

You can see the other loom I have been using on the side of this one, this one just dwarfs that one!
This one has some things on it I will need to learn a little bit more about and it is missing one treadle which should be no big deal to replace.

Now I need to clean up the big box of heddles that came with it and put them in the harnesses, replace the treadle, replace a couple of bolts, buy a reed and I am ready to thread the loom! Any guesses how long it will take me to thread it the first time? I am already planning my first project on it. I am thinking log cabin rugs. That is what I was making on the other one until I decided that loom just was not heavy enough to take the abuse of making rugs.

I can see lots of long winter nights working away on my 'new to me' loom!

Have a wonderful weekend!!