Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Well hello ...

Well hello, its been a while.  You probably guess that I've been busy.  I had an opportunity to take a stand at an Altrusa Conference at the Rotorua Events Centre over four days this last weekend.  Went down to set up on Thursday afternoon and traded Friday through Monday.  It was a great weekend, met some lovely people, had loads of fun and sold some fibre art.  I now have new respect for shop managers; it was exhausting getting stock made, sorted, labelled, priced and packed but all worth it.

Now where did we finish last round up.  Oh yes, charcoal and silver warp.
 4 colour double weave, red and melon weft over charcoal and silver warp.  16 shafts, 8 shaft shift.  Love it, so did the lovely lady who took it home.
 Then, just because I could, I used the same warp and threading to try shadow weave with a denim blue and rust weft.  A lovely wrap resulted.
I wove some fabulous blankets to take to Rotorua but the general comment was they were too large to accommodate in luggage and would get dirty if taken on board the plane.  This first one is Paua with a dark green mohair weft
 and its close up
 and Paua with deep purple/blue weft.
 I had some mohair dyed a dark green so dyed a warp in the colours of pounamu (greenstone) and they glow a rich emerald and dark green.

 I overdyed a couple of merino wraps, this one wild raspberry (which has a new home)
 and Sea.
I was going to take the pearls off before dying but thought they might take on a bit of colour.  They didn't but so glad I left them on.

And that about gets us up to date.  I have orders for more blankets but think I'll make one for my daughter which I promised at the beginning of autumn, just to get me back in the swing.  

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Solving problems

Quite some time ago I wove a series of scarves in an orange/red and a harsh orange.  No one looked at them and they weren't my colour so I nonchalantly hit the dye pot.  This first one I overdyed with 'fire red' which made the red redder and softened the orange.


Then I figured blue over red gives purple and over orange I'd get a green but what sort I didn't know so it was with curiosity that I kept peering into the pot.  A successful outcome I think.
 The play study of 4 colour double weave continues.  I dressed the loom with a black and white merino wool warp; weft was emerald green and purple.  The black enriched the colour but white was a bit stark.


 Same warp and different treadling, this time the weft is quarry and silver grey.
 You can see from the close up that the white has killed the silver.  Two medium colours would have been better.  Nonetheless they are both super wraps and very wearable.
 Blanket production continues and, among others I've done recently, this is wet warp straight from the dye pot in paua colours.
 The next warp I've put on the dobby loom for another run of 4 colour double weave is 2/20 cotton in charcoal and silver.  The charcoal is mercerised but the silver isn't and as soon as I started rolling the warp onto the back beam (front to back) I was in strife with the silver fluffing and attaching itself to its neighbours.  B..ger I thought and went for a walk to the beach.  While strolling along I recalled a blog post from Daryl Lancaster where she separates layers of her warp with cords while winding it on.  I thought it was worth trying even though I get a basket weave shed with echo threading.  It worked; I went slowly but no tangles or broken threads.  I really thought I was going to have to bin this one.

side view
Isn't the internet wonderful.  You never know when posting information about one thing will help with another problem.
I did include an extra half metre of warp for sampling and tried many different combinations of weft.  All but one is successful and now I can't decide which ones to weave.  More next time.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Jayne Cobb hats

Some time ago my son sent a picture of a hat and asked if I could make one for Jack.  I thought it rather 'un-kiwi' colours so said yes, but I'd change the colours.  Until I was educated into the mystique behind the hat.

It turns out there is quite a cult following of a TV show called "Firefly".  I haven't seen it and obviously new nothing of it until the hat request.  Firefly was a short lived "space western" which aired on TV in 2002.  In one of the shows' episodes a character named Jayne Cobb receives a distinctive yellow and orange hat in a care package from his mother.  Jayne, a gun happy tough guy (a mercenary) is very pleased with the handmade hat and wore it throughout the episode.  I believe he asks "does it sit right".

I had some handspun romney yarn which was a bit uneven as I had been experimenting to get bulky thickness - perfect - into the dye pot it went.


Looks like someone pinched is wearing Dad's hat.
The little one is for Uncle Errol who introduced me to the story of Jayne Cobb.  (A friend said he's probably thinking "Muuum it doesn't get that cold here".)