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

Friday, September 15, 2006

My Loopy Life

Disperse dye leaves permanent stains on the white enamel of the roaster. Unlike the other dyes I use, this type of dye does not sponge off at all. I'll never have a problem finding the designated dye vat.

Loopers are not fun to weave with. I've tried both methods of chaining the loopers. One method makes a nice smooth, albeit thick chain that leaves no joining bumps, however it would not pack in. The other method leaves large joining bumps which at least packs in but leaves big fat bumps. I'm going to have a big fat bumpy rug. Once I install the 10# cast iron handle on the beater I may try the looper rug again using the first method. I really don't ever want to make another looper rug but I do have 40#s to use up. Anyone who lives near Next To Nowhere, PA can have 'em for next to nothing!

In rummaging through the loopers I've found that there are some thin loopers which I will try to weave with next. The thinner one is pictured to the right, the thicker on the left and both are joined in the same manner. This is the lump free method.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

For Charleen

15 tubes left

Distorted taller and tubes shorter in real life

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Spending $ Makes Me Happy

The Union is wonderful! I've learned how to overcome the flying advance of warp and I'm weaving rugs happily. I've completed the third rug using two 2" rag strips per shot. I'm midway through the fourth rug which is to be for a friend per request. This time I used doubled ends set at 6 epi. These rugs will be far more cushy than the first two.

I used a glue stick to glue the strips together for one of the rugs. Though it's quick and easy and can be done in front of the TV, it isn't any quicker than sewing the strips together. Do not keep your glue stick next to your tube of lip gloss. Though the glue stick is larger, if you're not paying attention you'll grab it and almost use it on your lips. Don't say I didn't warn you.

I got my wee paycheck from summer camp and made a huge order to Leesburg Looms and Supplies. Two enormous boxes arrived yesterday and I'm like a pig in s*it. Now to find room for all the warp I ordered.

I also ordered small cabinet maker scrapers for my spoons which also arrived yesterday. What a difference that makes in evening out the pesky gouge marks in my spoons. I have a gouge injury on my left index finger that will not stop bleeding. It was an oops moment.

On the dye front: 40#s of sock loopers, unknown content. I had ordered one jar of disperse dye and a bottle of PRO Dye Carrier NSC. The more I thought about it the more I realized I did not want to risk using the NSC, even with a respirator. I dyed 2.5# as a test run without using the NSC but did add the acid. It worked. The blue is a nice rich color, not navy, but then didn't expect to get a true navy. I have another 2.5# dyeing in the roaster again today...dyeing the rain. It's a shame that is all the roaster can hold. I doubt 5# will be enough to do a rug, so I know I'll be dyeing for the next few days. I did score another roaster, a used roaster, a big heavy roaster similar to what Mom had back in the 50's. Himself asked if this one could be for cooking food and not fiber. I'll roast a turkey or chicken or 2 then go back to the "dark side" and use it for dyeing. I'm an evil dyer.

Friday, September 01, 2006

The Union Loom put to work, or how I spent the past few weeks

My new vow is to try and have something in the dye pot weekly. As usual, the photo does not show the array of color variations but hopefully you get the idea with the 2 colors that show up here. This is yards and yards of cotton slated for ripping/cutting apart for a rag rug.

My first two rag rugs fresh off the loom. They actually look better in this picture than up close and personal. How refreshing for Photoland. The one on the left is from old sheets in shades of blue. The one on the right is from jeans...very underwhelming. I should have woven in more shots of very faded fabric to brighten the rug. Both rugs are in the downstairs bath which needs rugs that can be washed weekly. A lot of barnyard gets tracked into that particular room. I had some issues with the Union since it just made it's debut here at Chez Marie. I wrote to Rugtalk and got some feedback. I need to put another warp on to test out the suggested remedies. My big issue is advancing the warp. When letting off the brake I'm getting too much warp and must advance the cloth beam too much, so much so that the fell is at the breast beam. Not good. I can't figure out how to remedy this. Someone suggested releasing the cloth beam a few clicks. I can't really picture how this is done and have looked at the ratchet which only goes forward. I guess it's the back clickity click thing that can be manipulated. Putting on another warp is the only way to test this out.

This week's new spoons. The upper one is black birch....sure looks very white to me. I didn't name the tree. The off-kilter spoon is cherry. Can you tell I like wonky handles?

Note the grain on the back of the smaller spoon. Pretty cool, huh?

I thought the smaller spoon looked like a tablespoon measure but it holds 2 teaspoons. I wonder
if I could carve actual measuring spoons. Attempting it may throw me over the edge. Keep your comments to yourself, please. I'm fragile.

I'm sanding two more spoons and thinking about engraving at least one of them. There are at least a dozen more that have been rough cut and waiting to be carved out. These were to be Christmas gifts but now I'm thinking they're mine. All mine (evil laughter)!

We bit the bullet and have ordered satellite internet. It will be installed next week. It will be far better than the present dial-up and no, we cannot get DSL here in the Hinterland. I become paralyzed with technological change. How do I transfer my list of favorite sites? What happens to my address book? How do I change over the Bloglines notifier? Yup, I'm one of those people who plugs something in and expects it to work. I don't want to know how it works, I just want it to work!

Thanks to Ernesto we are having temps in the low 60's. Socks, jeans and flannel is the fashion of the week. I am not ready for cooler temperatures yet. My tomatoes are just ripening. Anyone need squash?

adopt your own virtual pet!