Funny Farm

A fearsome foray into my fiber follies. I talk about weaving, knitting, spinning and dyeing. Some chatter about the sheep, goats, pigs and chickens.

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Location: North-east PA, United States

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Bev's Warp Painting Lesson

My friend Bev motored up from MD last week to paint two wool warps. One was a blue to green run and the other a navy-purple run. Note the picture above/left. Yup, that is Marie's Scientific Method of warp painting. Previously used Styrofoam cups, that is used previously for dye, bleached out and hoped there was no old dye lurking in those tiny crevices. Well, no it isn't actually Marie's Original Scientific Method, but one stollen from Sara and Molly. But they used acrylic cups and not it's kinda original, maybe. Ok, so it's not.

Above photo is the warp wrapped and steaming, well steaming once the lid was in place.

What? No pictures of the warp rinsed and dried? Nope. None.

After reading Charlene's blog (, like a good lemming, I stained my new spinning chair. Pretty, no?

Windows are open. There is a hint of Spring in the air and a rumor that it will arrive. Eventually.

You know, the "preview", which I liked, is nothing at all like it actually appears on the blog. I don't understand. Off to ponder this conundrum.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Here is a photo of the curtain I'm weaving. It certainly looks blurry here. It's a cotton warp set at 20 epi. The power has been going off and on all day and this is the third time attempting to write about this so this time I'll write an abridged version of the dyeing disaster. I had been planning the warp in my pea brain every night while falling asleep for weeks. I had other things brewing at the time so had no time to dye. Finally the time came when I could actually wind the warp and plan for a dye day. I got all my laundry done on a Sunday and weakly attempted cleaning the house. Monday was going to be the day! Bob left for work Monday morning and said it would be a good idea to check on the goats since they were getting close to kidding. I puttered around and mixed up dye stock and covered the table with news papers and plastic. I thought I ought to check on the critters before I got started and put on my winter barn garb and trudged out to the barn. Lo and behold, one of the does had triplets. I gathered up the trio and their Mom and took them to a jug pen after mucking it out then treated their umbilical cords and made sure they each got to the milk bar before coming back inside. Three hours had dwindled away so I hurried and mixed up the soda ash to begin soaking some of the warp. Some pesky people (a story is there) knocked on the door, let themselves in, sat and stayed for several hours. So much for Monday's dye session. Tuesday was already spoken for, library day, which entails a trip to Scranton. One does not just go to the library when in the "city" but goes to the feed store, hardware store, Wegmans (be still my heart) and to Harriet Carter's candy factory outlet. Ah, Wednesday is dye day! Another barn check finds another set of triplets and a repeat of Monday. My heart is broken. Charleen was coming on Friday to begin our Great Adventure and I had wanted to show her the warp. Okay, it will have to all be done Thursday and it actually happened. Kind of. Sigh. The table has been prepared since Monday. The dye had been mixed since Monday and the soda ash had been mixed. I checked the barn, twins. You know the routine by now. But I actually did get to the dye, I was determined, and began to paint the warp. Phone rings and someone wants to come over and buy eggs, no problem, more money for me to spend at Webs. The customer comes, chats while I'm merrily painting. Jingle, the phone rings again. Someone up the hill wants to bring his friend over to see the sheep and lambs. It seems this guy is doing a senior project about sheep. I said "fine, you know where they are so I won't come out". I am actually getting somewhere this day and I'm dancing with joy. Well, maybe not really dancing because I'd knock over the dye and that would not be good, but I was rejoicing. Knock on the door, pesky people let themselves in and I say in a loud voice, "this is NOT a good time to visit" and they keep coming into the house anyway and they all sit on the dining room chairs I had pushed aside and laugh, like I was joking! I continue to paint the warp, very angrily. They stay 2 hours. I finally asked them to leave. I've never done that in my life. But it was getting late and I was not even close to wraping this project up. On a sunny day the house is dark and day light was frittering away. At just about 4 PM the power goes out, nothing unusual around here except it didn't come back on. The pesky people had cut down a tree and it knocked down a power line. Are you getting the picture here?At 6PM, covered in dye because I wear whatever I'm doing, I wrap the chains in the plastic wrap and toss them into the now unheated roaster and put other warp chains into a bucket of 3% red dye which I realize a week later never had soda ash added because of my addled brain after a day of fun and frivolity, not. I sent Bob out for Chinese food and we read with our headlamps on. Quite a fashion statement. Quite a day. I guess I should have let the pesky people stay. Power came back on around midnight. I turned out the lights and went to bed.

Friday, March 10, 2006

I needed to learn how to upload a photo so here is a picture of a shawl I made my daughter for her last birthday. I painted the warp a la Sara Lamb.

I have another painted warp on the loom. I'm weaving a pair of curtains for the living room which really needs a splash of color. I'd post a picture but the cord to the camera seems to be missing. Bob must have it with him at work.

Stay tuned!

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Today is a milestone for me, however it was an accidental milestone. I started a blog, though quite by accident. I attempted to post a comment to Sara's blog and found I had to "join" and ended up creating a blog. Hmmmmm. My post never went to Sara since I wasn't "recognized". Well, I've been urged to start a blog, so here I am. Next lesson is to put up an actual photo, especially since I have a new warp on the loom. My second lesson will be to learn how to direct you to other's blogs as Charleen, Claudia, Carolyn and Sara know, highlighted names, click and voila you're there. I suppose I should find out what my blog address is. Stress!

respectfully submitted,

adopt your own virtual pet!