Thursday, December 29, 2005

So It's Not a Three Ply

In order to steel myself for the daunting task of cleaning up the basement studio I sat down to sample my three ply sock yarn made from my stash blend.

Maybe I put too much twist in the singles? I seem to remember someone saying that you need less twist in the singles for a three ply. I could get a yarn that looked good, but all the samples had so much twist in the finished product that I predicted socks that twisted up under the arch.

I finally came up with a winner. The addition of a little mohair gives a nice halo and will help strengthen the yarn, along with making a warm pair of socks.

I spent several hours downstairs going through my stuff. I tried to come up with a system for storage separating ready to spin fibers, fibers for blending, luxury fibers, handspun yarn (all other yarn is stored in the attic) and fabrics, divided between hand dyed, quilting, and clothing. Thinking I was on the road to organization I turned around and remember the bags of washed wool and a few bags of dyed and ready to be carded wool. Believe me, this picture minimizes the pile. There are twenty-one bags with washed fleeces that vary from a 2.5# Shetland to a 5.5# Romney. All dye equipment has been relegated to the bathroom. Today's job is to put up shelves to hold the syringes and measuring tools.

I didn't get Sarah's towels finished for her open house, but I'm on the last one now. While weaving I've been planning my version of a warping trapeze and the next warp to be woven.

Sunday, December 18, 2005

What I've Gained From This Experience

I'd like to think I've gained a few new brain cells, but after my little buttonhole fiasco today (see below) I can honestly say I haven't. What I have gained is a bunch of pounds and and an even fouler mouth! Did you hear me today? The table of contents should have been a breeze. All I had to do was use the first three levels of headings and it's good to go. Yeah. Once I learned how to lock the fields the going was easier.

So the buttonhole problem. You might remember me saying that my new Janome wasn't making buttonholes. It would only do one side and not do the turnaround. I bought this last spring, attempted buttonholes in August, and just got around to trying it one more time before taking it in for repair. I read through the directions ten times and still it didn't work. Then I saw buried in the middle of 27 steps, pull the buttonhole lever all the way down. Oh. That. And here I was complaining that the manual was written for idiots. I guess I'm right.

So here's just two of the buttonholes it can do. Once I finished marveling at my stupidity, I finally got the zipper in on my Zipper Jacket, but stopped working on that and hopped over to the loom.

Sarah just finished redoing her kitchen and I'm making two of the towels for her. Josh painted it when he was home for Thanksgiving and he put a couple of dabs of paint on a piece of paper for me. I haven't seen it yet but she's having an open house on Saturday so I'm hoping to have both done and hemmed by then.

I love this variation on the pattern. That's a purple, let's call it eggplant, on the bottom, then gold, and then a forest green. I did three repeats and after 30" of pattern I'll reverse the order for the other end.

Sunday, December 11, 2005


Yeah, yeah. There's the abstract, the table of contents, and the appendixes, but the last chapter is done. I'm giving it to my editor (i.e. my friend the English teacher) tomorrow.

So I decided to peek in the fiber storage room to see if anything grew in there while I was otherwise occupied. Oh my! I hear the electrician is coming tomorrow morning while I'm at school. Did I clear a path to the fuse box? Of course not, I got back to spinning the stashblend sock yarn.