Monday, November 30, 2009

I'm Glad...

  • That I finished my Thanksgiving Costco Pumpkin Pie before I checked to see how many calories it has (Costco Nutrition Factor -- look only if you dare!)
  • That I have finished my Christmas shopping (if only the wrapping was done!)

  • That I have 10 inches of another scarf completed on my table loom

  • That I have warps ready for my counterbalance loom

  • and that I can play Christmas music anytime I want.
I have no photos of finished scarves to show you today because it's just been to gray to take good photos without a flash and I hate the way my flash washes out the colors. So instead I'm going to share some fibery/textile photos I took in Paris (FYI -- DH took me to Paris for my birthday. Whadda Guy! Little did he know that there were many, many, many fabric stores within 5 minutes of our apartment.) You can see more of my Paris Textile Photos here. The first two are from the fabric stores...blocks and blocks of stores. All of them have a sampling of their fabrics on the sidewalk for shoppers to admire. Many of the stores are multi-stories. I went three times (maybe more) and the shops were always busy. I only bought some buttons and three pieces of was sensory overload for sure! I went to the famous yarn shop, La Droguerie, and did not buy anything. They had lots of yarn in lovely colors but I didn't see anything that I would not find at home. However, had I been looking for feathers this shop and several in the fabric district would have been the place to shop! And if you look at the whole photo gallery you will see photos from a shop with rows and rows of shelves with ribbons. Amazing!

Now its off to the treadmill for a short walk to nowhere so that I can leave those pumpkin pie calories behind (no pun intended!).

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Stash...

My stash busting weaving projects are progressing nicely, however, it hasn't stopped me from adding to the stash. The fall colors here have been extraordinary this year so when Lisa Souza spun up some of her fabulous LeafPile colorway I snagged a skein. Yesterday I made a trip to Weaving Works in Seattle and found some warp to go with it. I have enough of the handspun for at least 2 scarves plus a mobius.

I have another mobius on my table loom -- the colors were inspired by the Maple trees in our yard. The warp is some mystery alpaca in greens, browns and blues and the weft is Lisa Souza Big Wool in Mars Quake. Right now I'm calling it a mobius, but since I tied on to an old warp there may be enough for a shorter scarf. I'm just going to weave until I reach 43 inches and see how much I have left of the warp and weft and maybe keep going.

Now for some finished projects...Last spring I put a warp for a scarf on my table loom...a really lovely soft turquiosey blue and paired it with Lisa Souza Baby Alpaca Silk in South Pacific. But for some reason I just wasn't motivated to work on it so it just sat there until I hauled the loom to my annual knitting retreat. I nearly finished it there and finished shortly after I got home. The colors are wonderful, the yarn is wonderful and it feels so good. So today it's going into the mail, heading to its new home in Kansas with a very deserving person. It will be a great barrier against that nasty Kansas wind. I wish you could feel how soft and warm it is.

The past year I've been haunting local thrift shops and snatching up cheap cashmere sweaters. Then I pick them apart and reclaim the yarn. The next Mobius here is using some of the reclaimed cashmere for the weft. The yarn was really fine so I paired it with a strand of kid silk and a strand of merino. I actually S-plied them on my spinning wheel before weaving with them. For the warp I used some Merino wool in black and burgundy colors. I've been wearing it alot this fall as I try it get my 10,000 steps a day in. Instead of tying the fringe together I got brave, hauled out the sewing machine and joined the ends with a flat fell seam and it turned out great. I wet finished it by hand but it still came out more fulled than I thought it would -- it's toasty warm. I did this mobius on my Fireside. I had actually intended it to be a scarf, but I had lots and lots and lots of problems with one of the warp threads breaking. It wasn't along the edge so I think there may have been a rough spot on the heddle. I know the threads weren't twisted because I had to rethread to heddle and reed some many times.

On my Fanny loom I put on a cotton warp and used a Cashmere and silk blend for the weft to make yet another Mobius. (I really like to make them because I have a short attention span, and after weaving a while I'm ready to move on.) I just love this Mobius, the colors dance and its lovely to wear. I also joined it with a flat fell seam.

Just one more Mobius for you to see -- this is a stash buster. The warp is a called Little Devil (yep, its from Lisa Souza but the yarn discontinued) and the weft was something I picked up in my travels.

I joined it with by tying the fringe together, but I'm thinking about taking the fringe off and joining it with a flat fell seam. What do you think?
Wishing you a totally terrific Thanksgiving holiday!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Weaving From Stash

Every year I and a bunch of my friends go on a five day knitting retreat at an undisclosed location -- we shop, hike, eat, shop, hike, eat and do a little knitting -- some of which will have to be ripped out when we get home because we were laughing and not paying attention. The last couple of years I have taken my table loom along and since last year actually converted a knitter to a weaver (I think she has 3 looms now).

Some of my friends are also weavers and one was telling me that she has been weaving a lot using her knitting yarn stash. I've done some of that in the past and I have a lot of knitting yarns, err, maybe even more than that. My friend has inspired me to do more weaving from stash and maybe I will be able to empty a few bins and actually find one wall of my studio again.

So yesterday and today I have been pulling warps using my knitting yarns and I finished the scarf on my table loom. I have quite a large stash of yarns from Lisa Souza, so I pulled a warp with some of Lisa's Merino sport weight yarn (not available anymore) in Little Devil and two other warps in mystery yarns. I've been really inspired by the fall colors and spent some time this morning going through the stash to pull out fall colors. I want to get all three of my looms warped this week. Hopefully I will soon have some weaving eye candy to post here.