Friday, June 26, 2020

It's Been Too Long

My first dahlia!
Well, hello!  It's been a long time since I've written anything, but this past year has been a doozy.  Probably for you, too.  But this morning, I had too much time on my hands before I had to go to my desk, and went into the studio to get a certain warp off the loom 
When I was still in Brasstown, over two years ago, I put this organic cotton warp on the 8-shaft Tools of the Trade, aka Tootsie.  I used a pattern from Lace and Lacey Weaves by Mary E. Snyder, which is a fun but somewhat confusing book.  I've loved this pattern for a long time and was ready to take it on.  But I warped the loom before I moved to Richmond, and the warp got awfully wonky in the move, of course.  I battled and cursed and hated this warp, but I was determined to finish it.  It's bread cloths, which I intended as gifts.  Oh, but they're just full of skipped threads and a couple of broken ones, and I just wanted this dog off the loom!  And this morning, I finished.  Well, I'm lying:  There was probably enough warp left to make a small one.  But I cut that dog off!  Funny thing was, when I unrolled it off the beam, it smelled like that awful house I rented in Brasstown, full of mold and stress.  Ugh!  
Crap hanging off the back
What a mess!
So today, I will serge the edges and throw the whole thing in the wash to get that nasty smell and memory out.  And then, what?  What yummy project shall I put on that loom next?

As for the other loom, Jenny, the tartan warp I was making, which was so pretty, was ruined by cats.  Yes, my "cat-proof" studio is only cat-proof if I keep the door closed, and I didn't.  I still got about 4 yards of the tartan, and don't know what I'll do with it, but I do know this:  I will not be weaving the Davidson tartan.  I'm not sure what I'll do with that wool that Mom bought so long ago for that, but I weave for fun, not to make projects I feel I have to.  I know, I know:  I pushed through that warp on Tootsie, even though I hated it in the end, but I didn't want to waste all that yarn.  Maybe I shouldn't say never.  I won't do it in the near future.
  In the near future, I am going to make some dish towels on Jenny.  I'm using some 8/2 olive green cotton Mom bought way back in 2005.  We went to Misty Mountain in Charlottesville, and Mom bought this yarn and some brick red, as well as a giant cone of off-white, but she never used it.  I like the red and green together, but I think I'll make the first batch just green and white, and then next batch with red and white.  I should have enough to keep and share, and I'm thinking a nice plain weave will make me happy, but they will be striped.

 And when I was getting ready to wind that warp, I was super excited to see that some hooks I bought ages ago fit perfectly into the holes in my IKEA shelving unit!  Perfect height and everything!

 Progress has been made on my embroidery project during my stay-at-home, work-from-home time, as well.  This is the upper back of the jacket.  I'm now working on the skirt back that hangs from this, full of a sunflower chain.  Hand embroidery is slow work, but very soothing.

 And I've decided to learn to crochet.  I follow a knitter on Instagram, Sofia Kammeborn, @kammebornia, who also has a lovely podcast, and one Sunday, she posted a photo of an afghan she was crocheting.  I found the pattern and started using up some old odds and ends of brightly colored yarn.  Mom taught me to crochet when I was 8, but I could never follow the patterns.  Turns out, American use one terminology for crochet, and the entire remainder of the world uses another!  Why?  No one seems to know, but it explains why I couldn't follow patterns.  So I learned, and I have enough flowers to make into an afghan, still working on the borders, but you can see some of the flowers in the background here.  When my son saw them, he made fun, calling them Yarmulkes and doilies.  But then had the nerve to ask for some to use as coasters!  And I have a pile here to send him.  They're fun and mindless and good for doing in the evening when my brain is spent.

 Since March, I've been working from home, and for a few months, it was very slow going.  I had projects to do, but there wasn't much business coming in.  So, the cats took over the office, kicking me out of my chair and frequently taking naps on the keyboard.  

No dogs on the couch!
But in May, I went on a road trip.  I've been looking off and on for a new dog, and now would be a perfect time to adopt a dog, as many people have found now, and I finally found one.  He's an Australian Shepherd, a retired service dog for people with PTSD, and he was unhappy in the rescue sanctuary that took him in when his person passed away.  His name is Wiley, and he is wonderful.  He is afraid of thunder, loves long walks, gets along perfectly with Amelia and loves Liz.  
Hiding from thunder

I've just found out I'll be going back to the office soon, and I'm still working out the details with my boss.  I'm not super excited about it, but I knew it would happen soon.  In the meantime, there's gardening to do, weaving going on and lots of furry friends to hang out with.  I've enjoyed my time working from home!  I hope you are all well and happy and working on lots of fibery projects to keep you minds off the world right now.  Health and love to all of you!

1 comment:

LA said...

I'm so glad Wiley found you! What new commands have you taught him???? Your stash looks interesting....lots of great projects just waiting for a loom. Have fun! (P.S. Glad you've taken up we can talk!)