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more threads

August 20, 2014

this is the rainbow warp on the warping mill P1050410

it looks more like Crayola colours

tea towels guaranteed to brighten any morning


just getting started – navy blue bamboo weft

the same advancing twill – using up more of the stash


the studio looks like a big wind blew through


the morning after starting a new class – it’s a tight fit!


last weekends Fibrations – under a brilliant blue sky


it gets bigger and better every year

thanks to Knotty by Nature and Ryan and Stephanie

I didn’t participate this year so had lots of time to see everything


experienced hands at work

Barbara Birke’s bobbin lace is exquisite

she talked and answered questions while continuing to weave this intricate pattern

it is lovely to see the old crafts still being professionally worked

glorious colour

August 14, 2014


after weeks of hot, dry weather and forest fires burning throughout the province


it rained steadily all night

the Earth sighed

 the birds sang

P1050404and I finished weaving the scarves

two slightly different wefts

P1050406on one side the weft floats over three threads

on the other side the warp floats over three threads

can you see the difference in the diagonal pattern?

P1050407the center piece, woven at the end of the warp, has a weft of silver-grey silk

I was so happy weaving this colour sequence with the advancing twill


that the next warp will be cotton tea towels in a rainbow lineup

there is going to be a bumper crop of grapes

P1050358in this corner bed in Beacon Hill Park

blooms this mysterious flower – growing 4-5 feet tall

P1050355does anyone know what it is??

I need to have one

P1050401the rain has stopped, the sun is back

the colours are clean and sparkling

a week of colour

August 11, 2014

in the summer, when the indigo vat is working well, anything that isn’t nailed down gets dyed


 2 skeins of 20/2 silk I inherited from a retiring weaver

not exactly my colours

a couple dips in the indigo fixed that


the skein on the bottom is handspun silk that was a sad pale indigo

it went into the vat as well

P1050382Merino wool on the top and a silk skein, now green, at the bottom

they were a very bright yellow dyed with rhubarb root

 after 2 quick dips I’m not sure how the brown happened or if it can be repeated

it is a nice heather-y mix and would be lovely for a tweed jacket


the small blue skein is the same merino that got lost at the bottom of the vat and wasn’t retrieved until the end of the day


the shifu sample is a winner,  the linen warp and paper yarn are similar in shade

the twisted slubs in the paper thread add interest

I think there is a shifu project in the works

P1050393the second piece of woven shibori is dyed

with the 2 pieces there is 1 1/2 metres,  what to use them for?

P1050375a change from the blue

there is a bumper crop of figs, I just have to get to them before the starlings and raccoons!

the beat goes on

August 7, 2014

keeping my fingers crossed that all the handspun warp yarns behave themselves

I knew they could present a problem

but – looking good


two repeats of the 8 shaft advancing twill


on the other hand, this little weaver is in trouble


on my hands and knees, on a busy city sidewalk, ( bum in the air)  taking this picture

approximately 10 inches across

think it is a Sulfur Shelf or Laetiporus sulphureus , commonly know as Chicken of the Woods

my mushroom book states;  “do not  serve it to lawyers, landlords, employers, policemen, pit bull owners, or others whose good will you cherish!”

it does not say it will dye – think I’ll give it a miss


August 4, 2014

a wonderful thing about maintaining a large outdoor indigo vat is that you can dye all summer whenever the urge strikes

P1050337I frequently start the first dip while still in my pj’s

from left to right

heavy cotton napkin, first dip

napkin, same cotton  10 – or maybe 11 dips

the last of the woven shibori, more dips tomorrow

linen warp, shifu weft

P1050339 finally, 20/2 silk top dyed with indigo over pomegranate yellow

P1050348after several attempts this is very close to the actual colour

a dark teal green – yeah!

the challenge with my students involved an exchange of yarns

in order to have enough for two scarves (what’s the point of going to all the work of warping only one?)

P1050341I played with several colours from the stash

silk, some handspun

the gold yarn is spindle spun Fox Fiber cotton plied with silk

P1050343I choose to wind the colours in pairs – one increasing in number and the second decreasing

switch to a second pair which includes one of the previous colours

there is always a solid block of colour between the change in pairs

it takes a bit of time but blends the colours and varying yarns nicely

and I’m still working from the stash!


August 1, 2014

 summer is flying by

P1050109 on the daphne

P1050125right side


don’t you love the delicate border?

P1050333loves the oregano

P1050134hanging out at the Art Gallery – I wonder if that is allowed?

insects 001just hanging out

insects-critters 038 - Copyanother edging fringe

P1050129is it a Monarch? – it is well camouflaged – can you see it?

we’re not on the flight path

P1050132bye for now


July 31, 2014

gathering and tying the shibori threads

P1050317they need to be tight – very tight

the gathering threads need to be strong but soft so they don’t hurt your hands

P1050323ten dips in the indigo gave a nice dark colour

the fabric is soft and has a nice drape

P1050324the dye migrated along the draw-up threads and left an interesting pattern on the selvedges

but not what I wanted

I’ve now woven another 1 1/2 yards – every inch was a struggle

this time the problem is caused by the threads that were initially wound two together in the balls

I thought I had dealt with this when the warp was measured – apparently not

they are becoming increasingly twisted (plied together) as I advance the weaving

they are breaking at the heddles and it is impossible to make a workable shed

time to admit defeat

stop wasting time and energy

and – move on!


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