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More Loose Ends

The weaving report: I finally got about 13 inches woven on my handspun sampler, and decided that was enough for now, so I cut it off the loom, and now rather than the project itself being a loose end, the project is a mess of loose ends! I’m sure there is a better method for finishing it, but for now I’ve tied all the little ends in pairs so it doesn’t unravel itself.

weaving with loose ends

My first weaving. It’s simple, and certainly not perfect, but it’s fabric. Cool, eh?

First Fabric

Didn’t quite finish sock #2 this week,

Socks in progress

but working with those bright fruity colors has motivated me to dye up another batch of sherbet-y goodness:

Fresh and Fruity

Kool Aid is so much fun.

Almost too tired to blog

Very little woolwork to show for this week, though I did manage to finish sock #1 thanks to bus rides and lunch hours.

Purple-Tangerine sock #1

Sporty, eh? A nice thick, warm sock.

Just my standard sock formula- lots of ribbing, modified Dutch heel, wedge-type toe, kitchener stitched to close. Here’s a closer look at my preferred heel- so easy to work, and fits a narrow foot very nicely.

Denise's Favorite heel

Toe is little squarer than I’d usually make, but that’s because I kept on with the foot a little too long. Still a good fit.

Sock number two is newly cast on, and will be worked in the same yarns, with whatever striping scheme that occurs to me while I’m knitting it.

Still have to ply the rest of the purple haze

More Purple Haze

Which means I’d better keep this short. Gotta get to bed early tonight. It’s been a hard-workin’ weekend around the homestead.

Denise out.

This Week in Pictures

Combing:

Shetland of many colors-

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Spinning:

Purple Haze from the stash (b-day gift from thoughtful co-workers!)

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Knitting:

Tilly, from A Fine Fleece. Finished. Just needs ends woven in.

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Finishing:

Zipper arrived, and I’d better buckle down and finish the Urban Aran before it gets really cold out.

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Casting On:

Purple Haze and Tangerine Blaze. Match made in heaven?

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& studying up!

Very exciting- I’m taking the Livestock adviser class in Everett this Fall. This week was Poultry 101. Next week is Grass-fed beef. Hopefully we’ll get to sheep sometime soon.

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Denise out.

Yet another way to play with wool

Until today, I’d never ventured into weaving.

I always thought “Geez, looms look like such big, complicated machines” and “Man, it must be a bugger to warp one of those things”.

I’d looked at some of the small rigid heddle looms that a lot of spinning wheel manufacturers have on the market,, but they run about $200, and that seems like a lot of cash to drop to just “give it a go”.

Then other day I was poking around on the web, and I happened upon a plan for a simple loom.

I read it, and it actually made sense to me (helped that it had pictures). I thought “Hey, I could do that just just materials we already have around the house”.

And so I set about doing it. I present Exhibit A:
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This is just the frame with the warp yarn wrapped on it.

Before you can do any weaving, there are a couple more steps you need to take-

First, you need to tie the warps together so they are all laying in the same plane (at least on the end you’re working from)

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Then you need a “shed” board-

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and a heddle, so you can easily lift every other warp yarn to create a plain weave cloth.

The shed is easy- just place a lath-type piece of wood in the opening between the warp yarn layers on the far side of the frame. The heddle are a little (but not much) more work. You cut and tie loops of string for each of the lower strands of warp,

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and then load them on a dowel (or PVC, if that’s what you’ve got hanging around),

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Then magically, when you lift the bar, the lower strands rise too, and create a nice little space for you to pass your weft through! Neat, eh?

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You also need something to press your newly-passed through weft yarn down next to the last one. For this, I’ve been the using the tine end my diz, who happens to also be a spork (seen in a couple photos above).

Who’da thunk that this modest little lunchbag utensil would have such extensive fibercrafting potential?

That’s all for now-