Friday, September 18, 2015


This summer I took a bit of a blogging break, which wasn't planned, but it just felt good. I didn't email much, didn't spend much time on my computer, and focused on other things. Fiber things. Quilty things. Spinning things. Motorcycling with my family. And, boy, did that feel good!

I've been sewing donation baby quilts to drop off at the local women's homeless shelter. Once in a while I browse the thrift stores for cotton vintage sheets and it's fun to see what bright combinations I can come up with to create baby quilts. And there's something quite satisfying about making small quilts to give away.

This summer I was fortunate to buy a couple of lovely merino fleeces from Cleo Gallinger, who runs the Sheep Shed. She skirts the fleeces so that you end up with a bag full of lovely, soft fiber that is ready to work with. I came home with a champion white fleece that has a lovely crimp to it and a dark chocolate brown fleece. I've been tying small bundles of the fiber retaining the order so that the tips are together, then placing them in a slow cooker to clean/scour the wool. That works quite well for merino, as I want to flick card it for spinning rather than run it through my drum carder. It's slow going, but I get the results that want this way with no neps in the fiber and it's simply a joy to spin.

 I've been dyeing the white in various colors-from bright blue to pumpkin orange to a leaf green-using acid dyes, food coloring, and drink mixes. Then I blended the fibers on my Majacraft blending board to make rolags, which I spun on one of the hand spindles that my husband created for me. This is the first skein that I've finished so far, and it's merino plied with tussah silk. It's going to be knit up into a special winter hat for someone....

I like spinning on hand spindles and also using my wheel, alternating between the two. It's all good!!

I've had an 8/2 cotton warp on my loom for the longest time, just waiting for me to throw the shuttle.  I've been trying to fit in a hour of weaving each day, so that I can make progress on my kitchen towels. The latest towel is a 2/2 twill using a vibrant turquoise weft that contrasts nicely against the warm tones of the warp.

It feels quite nice to be back and I've missed reading creative posts from other people.
 I hope that you had a fantastic summer! Motorcycling with my family made my summer extra special, and we have some really great memories of back roads that we explored and plans to explore more.

Here's hoping that you have time for fiber/fabric today,