Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Talked to a local fiber shop owner who might be taking over the front part of my space. This would totally rock. The space has been unused and is such a waste, since I have to heat it as well and it just gathers boxes and junk that should be tossed out anyway. I've entertained the idea before of subletting it, once to a financial planner and currently to my other half and a little local non-profit to store their stuff in. The stuff amounts to about 4 boxes and that could easily go elsewhere.

The nice thing about having a fiber artist/shop owner would be the energy and the focus. Another weaver would be ideal, but a spinner would be just as cool. We'll see how this turns out. It could be a great thing for everyone.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Miles of warp

Spent the entire weekend warping up the back sectional beam with 30 yards of warp at 102"--I'd have gone with more yardage, but it's all I have of that color. My body is actually tired today, but the results are very satisfying. Now of course comes the tedium of threading and denting the whole thing, but that's easier to do alone. Had a friend come over and help with the warping--it really helps to have two people, there's lots going on to monitor. Sometimes we caught the break at the creel sometimes at the tension box.

So, I'm ready to crank out these last chocolate brown blankets and move on to something else. I've not been particularly pleased with the chocolate. The yarn is a little thinner than I had hoped for and seems more prone to breakage. It's also pretty dirty... lots of vegetal matter and bits of fluff. Don't know if it was the original fleece itself or lack of processing, but I've had to go back over these yarns several times as I'm weaving and pick out slubs and trash.

In the end the blankets are gorgeous though. I love the color.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Well, it seem that January came and went, mostly under about 6 inches of ice. Somehow all of that has put me a bit behind my schedule, then again, I need to stop being so apprehensive about time.

Earlier in the month (the week of my birthday January 11th), I went to Seattle and had a great time, not only visiting the city and stocking up on books at their local weaving store, Weaving Works, but I also had an opportunity to meet with two great weavers, Bonnie Tarses and Khris Fruits, who were both inspiring in their outlook and manner and the beautiful things they produce.

Bonnie especially has inspired me to move down a path where I have a bit more of a spiritual connection with my weaving, something that in production weaving is often missing I think. So, the gauntlet, or shuttle or whatever has been thrown and now I must really think about how that works for me. Khris inspired a new reconsideration of weft-faced and rug weaving. Something that I've really not been interested in before. But heck, I do have a rug loom, so maybe that's what I should use it for...

As far as production goes, I'm about to warp on a long warp and make a run of blankets in chocolate brown. I really had to do a lot of planning with this since my yarn stock is a little more depleted. I think I'll only be able to get about 8 blankets out of this run if my calculations were on the money and I'm hypervigilant about loom waste. I've got a very eager studio assistant starting, okay, actually just a good friend who has nothing better to do, but it'll sure help with the tedium of dressing the loom and if nothing else he's entertaining.

Two new gadgets this week--a digital postal scale so that I can weigh as close as 1/10 of an ounce but up to 35 lbs. (My Weigh UltraShip model), and a digital counter that will record every turn of the crank as I'm beaming on. It is pretty ingenious and uses a magnet proximity method--i.e., the magnet attached to the crank increments the counter every time it passes by the reader, $25 at www.chameleoncolorworks.com

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

New Year Resolution

Some years, I've done well with resolutions, others not. I think this year will be the year o' weaving. I'm already off to a good start. In addition to getting a nice fat warp on the AVL this week, I also finally put on a 10/2 perle warp for a shadow weave scarf in watery shades... we'll see, that one is definitely on the back burner.

My big project for the month is to finish off the vest and get some blankets out the door.

For the year, my plan is to complete the Master Weavers program or the COE (or heck, both..), in record time. I think most folks take about two years of concentrated effort. I wonder if I can do it in one year. That's a lot of weaving, I don't remember how many items I counted, but it ends up being at around one per week.

Either way, good goal to shoot for and I need something to get me up the hill to the studio.